Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Day 11 of the Giant Irish Adventure

I think the first part of this post happened on the same day as the Skellig trip...lost track of time, haha.

We stopped at a chocolate factory...
A map of the area we are in.


There were samples served.
And lots of chocolate for sale.
Chocolate Skellig Island!
Samples
Where the chocolate comes from...
We will be finishing up the Ring of Kerry tour.

One last look at Skellig Michael, Small Skellig, and Lemon Rock.
We stopped for a tour of Derrynane, ancestral home of Daniel O'Connell.


Inside the Chapel.
About the chapel.
Large banquet room.
Drawing Room
About the Drawing Room
Going to see O'Connell's getaway...where he went to be alone and write.
We are also looking for Fairy Houses that are hidden in the woods.
Do you see one?
This two-story tower was O'Connell's getaway.
We pass a little fairy house below the tower.
The unique floor of the tower.
You can see where the second floor was.
Steps to the second floor.
Some fairy houses I spied, but I didn't find them all:






Lots of paths to wander down.


I had a little time to wander through another woodland garden.





Next we headed out onto Beara Peninsula...

Down this narrow road to see the ancient Urach Stone Circle.
It is on a farmer's property.

The stone circle is supposed to hold some magical powers.
Dee explains about the powers.
People have left symbols...
We held hands and circled the stone to try to feel the power...
This bird circling overhead...I thought was a vulture, turned out to be a Bald Eagle when put on my computer, so I guess there must be something to the mystical powers...hmmm.
Uragh Stone Circle

Dee showing us how to make a Cross from the straw...if I remember correctly.
The oily bogs...no wonder the peat logs burn so well.
Heading into the mountains..
To go over Healy Pass and drive on the curviest road in Ireland.



Ride with us...click on the video.
video

Dee stopped here and made us walk over the pass!
There she goes leaving us...
So there's nothing for us to do but walk.


We all made it to the top of Healy Pass.

Looking down at the other side at the curviest road in Ireland.

Here we go...
Looking back at the pass.

Motorcycles like this road.

We stopped at the famous McCarthy's Bar in Castletownbere. There's a book by that name, although I'd never heard of it.


In a park in the town of Glengarriff we stopped for a lesson in the fast-paced sport of Hurling.
Dee demonstrated various moves/plays.
And we all got to practice. Tom..
Lance..
Tina..
Elaine....
Traveling and passing...
Danielle
Danielle and Elaine
Tina and Katie
Then there was yet another castle to explore!


And on to our last night's stay at Gougane Barra Hotel.
But before we can unpack our bags...
There's a hike to do!
This is the Gugan Barra Forest park.

We are off to see a waterfall and a great view.

Looking at the waterfall...
Not much water falling.

Upwards to the view...
Unfortunately, many of the trees in this forest have been killed by an invasive species of insect.
Dee making sure everyone crosses the stream safely.

And the view is nice, well except where my camera lens is cracked.

Coming back down...
It looks like the rain forests of the Pacific Northwest.

Shamrocks
Many trails left unhooked.
The lake beside the hotel.
It's rumored to have it's own sea serpent.
A church reflected...
Tina and I walked the grounds early in the morning.
Sun rays just catching the mountains.
Graves

This was the start of our last day on tour. 

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