Now the fun begins! We picked up the van and headed out of Dublin...at 5:00 pm the day before a holiday (St. Patrick's Day). CH was driving a strange van with the gears on the left side, driving on the left side of the road, in a major city during rush hour. I was horrible at navigating through the roundabouts at first and we missed a turn. That led to driving through more streets in Dublin (but thank goodness it wasn't City Centre!) before we got on the motorway. It was strange to have the exits to the left. We originally planned to drive to our first campsite but that was before I realized we were picking up the van at 3:00 in the afternoon. Strange vehicle, strange road, dark; you get the picture. There are a couple of apps/websites to help someone find a place to park for the night. Mark at Bunk Campers made a call and found a place for us that was about halfway between Dublin and Clifden. He was told that as long as we went in and had a pint or two we were welcome to stay.
When we got there the kitchen had just closed. We hadn't eaten dinner and didn't take the time to stop at a grocery store as we left Dublin. Sean, the barman, called a cab for us so we could go into town for dinner, only it never came. We ended up ordering something online and driving into town to pick it up. After we ate we went into the lodge's bar and ended up staying until 2:00 a.m. talking with Sean and Joe (a regular) & his wife. It was great listening to the stereotypical Irish banter between the 2 men! Joe is a tour bus driver so he had some great tips on places to visit along the Wild Atlantic Way. Before it was too late, there was another bus driver who gave us tips, too. We were blown away by how friendly everyone was.
We woke up the next morning and hit the road. CH drove through Galway's traffic without incident as people made their way down to the City Centre for the parade and other festivities. On the flight over, there was a young woman from Galway sitting next to me. The last time I was in Ireland, Galway was my favorite place. We had an excellent chat & when she found out we were heading to Clifden, she told us about this place in Oughterard (to the west of Galway) that had fantastic coffee & pastries. We had no trouble finding Sullivan's. In fact, we stopped again the next day when we went by it on our way to Killarney. It lived up to the hype!
|The cinnamon rolls are what they are famous for, but everything was delicious!|
|This was stop #2!|
We left Oughterard just minutes before the parade began. Google Maps routed us down this 2 way road:
On our way to Clifden we saw some beautiful sights:
|Sheep on the side of a mountain|
|This sheep made it to the top of a mountain|
We made it to our first campground and the owners showed us around. We had a beautiful view from where we parked. It was really windy (and I thought it was cold!) but we were nice & toasty in our van.
|Old vs. New(er): An old building sits next to a newer one.|
That night we went into town. The owners of the campground suggested that we not stay out past 9:00 when things would start to get crazy and a little out of hand. We definitely took their advice. We ate dinner and tried to find a not-so-busy pub to get a drink. We met a man who made a suggestion but it was a bust. We were too early for music, although we were hoping it would start early on St. Patrick's Day.
|Clifden is a cute little town |
My one complaint is that we didn't have more time in this area of Ireland. We hit the road the next day to Killarney, but we had a major stop to make on the way.
More pictures of the Atlantic Ocean at the campground:
For more details on the campground, visit our camping blog, Flyin' the Coop.
Beautiful...and Sullivans is mentioned in a series of books I read by Sheila Connolly (she is now deceased---she wrote Cozy Mysteries that were based in Ireland). Thank you for posting...I sure enjoy this. smilesReplyDelete
Oh! I'm going to have to check those books out! I can't believe Sullivans was mentioned!!!Delete