Day three in Ireland was one of our faves. Our hostel roomies woke us up bright and early in Galway, so we decided to roll with it and get on with our day as well. We grabbed a couple of mint lattes from an overpriced cafe and were on our way!
When we arrived at the Cliffs of Moher around 8:30am we were happy to find the parking lot almost empty. With all of the talk in guide books about the incredible crowds I had kept my expectations reasonable on this, but it was such a nice surprise to have the place to ourselves. After a small altercation with the parking attendant, who brain ninja-ed us into thinking there was another place to park and then told us we'd get arrested if we parked anywhere else (what?!), and a cold but short hike up the hill, we were there....
It really was breathtaking. We just kept staring at the view, watching the gulls flying in and out of their nests and listening to the waves crashing waaaayy below. If there's one thing the Cliffs taught me it's to embrace "tourist traps" from time to time. J and I pride ourselves on traveling off the beaten path - spending more time wandering lesser known lands and dining with locals than on visiting the tourist hot spots. But sometimes (especially in the off season) we should make sure to visit what's popular - it probably got that way for a reason!
Finally it was time to move along with our day. We stopped at the visitor's center to warm up and buy some Irish souvenirs, including some Burren Mustard, Jim's favorite mug and some white chocolate hazelnut spread (yum!), then continued on our way to Killarney.
Before we even checked in, we decided to embrace the last bits of sunlight by going directly to Killarney National Park - which is now one of my favorite places in the world...
Amazing right? Everything about Killarney National Park was beyond gorgeous and deserved so much more exploring. I can't wait to go back again sometime!
We capped off the day at the Smoke House in downtown Killarney, enjoying multiple hard ciders and a delicious meal. The place was adorable - unique and homey.
Finally at our hostel we took advantage of the wi-fi for a bit and sipped some Irish beers before hitting the sack. The land o' the Irish just keeps getting better and better...next Ireland post soon!