That’s right, next stop was Ireland! ☘️
And this time I had my mother in tow. Who had never been outside of North America. And who I have never traveled alone with in my adult life.
It was kind of fun to be her ‘parent’. I made sure she was always in sight, held her money and tickets for her, and ushered her around an unfamiliar city. The one time we split up we set a very firm location and time to meet up. And we only almost got hit by motor vehicles twice… pretty good stat I’d say.
Our first stop was Newfoundland – a nice little stepping stone across the pond. I had never been here so we spent the afternoon getting our exercise walking up the very steep hill that is St. John’s and exploring the city. Beautiful place, definitely need to go back and explore more.
And then we took a bigger hop across a bigger pond and landed in Dublin about 12 hours after our Prime Minister had also landed there. We planned that.
After a few bus rides we made it to our ‘hotel lodge’ – not sure what that means – but think bed and breakfast… without the breakfast. We checked in early (thank you thank you thank you) and took a snooze after our redeye flight before tackling the city.
The city is beautiful, and totally walkable, so thats what we did, lots of walking, 50+km of walking. We traipsed all the way around Ireland.
We headed out west to King Johns Castle, and had delicious Guinness Stew at an Irish Pub, and saw the Burren, and the Cliffs of Moher. We even got to don some swords and test out our skills.
We stayed in the city and learned about the history of Ireland (Mom explored some museums while I shopped.. she then told me about it later), and walked around the Temple Bar district, and Trinity College, and saw lots of old old buildings. We hit up a few Irish Pubs on our trip, where Mom drank exceptionally good coffee (her opinion, I think it all tastes like dirt) and I drank pints of beer.
We headed North and learned all about the crazy history, and current events, of the area and signed our names on the Peace Wall.
We toured around Belfast in the back of a Black Cab, saw the Giants Causeway (which was beyond bizarre, and so strange, and definitely a NOT MISS location), and walked across the Carrick-a-Rede rope bridge.
I didn’t know that my poor mother was scared of heights when I took her to the edge of all of these cliffs.. oops. She did great, like a champ.
It was a quick trip to a beautiful country and I would love to go back with more time on my hands to explore the countryside a bit more.
Would I rent a car so that I could stop at all the little towns along the way? Yes.
Would I rent a manual car and drive on tiny winding roads on the opposite side of the road? No.
So I’m not sure where that leaves me. I guess I’ll have to go back and meet a cute local Irish man that can tour me around the countryside…
Until next time, happy traveling.