Sunday, August 12, 2012

Little road trip round Ireland with the child

As soon as the Retro Romp was over, I decided to take a break, a road trip with the child, and I thought I'd just post up a few pics of our travels. I love travelling round Ireland, its such a beautiful little country. There is so much to see, so much history, yup, I can be quite the tourist. It always amazes me how little Irish people travel round their own country. We seem to be better at travelling the globe then visiting our own heritage sites. I am lucky my 5 year old has the travel bug too, and is great (well... great-ish) in the car for long distances. I decided to make this his hols, doing things, going places the child would like, rather than what I wanted to do. So no visits to bookshops, shops, visits to museums he wouldn’t like, and lots of just sitting round with family and friends in the evening.
 This is the famous autograph tree 

First stop the lovely Kinvara, Co. Galway for 2 nights.This included a trip to the beautiful Coole Park with its famous beech autograph tree. If you have never been, then shame on you. It is a wonderful place. Just a minute off the Galway Limerick road, if you are passing, take a few mins to stop.  Not only is it a beautiful place to walk, have coffee, it is so full of history, its incredible to think of the men and women who strolled round this park in the past, and were inspired by its beauty.

I won’t go into the history of Coole Park, you can read all about it here Suffice to say, its pretty darn amazing to still be able to see the markings of Lady Gregory, Yeats, Shaw, Synge, and more.

Second stop was Westport, Co. Mayo, for a few days, to the folks house. We chilled, ate loads, watched the rain and the Olympics. My folks have the most beautiful garden, and I always come back with lots of pics of some of its beautiful flowers. The colours of which are just amazing! We did catch a few mins of one lovely early music session in McGings,, a jazz band that plays the last Saturday of the month (I think). The trumpet player and singer is possibly in his 80's, and still has it.
Then, with a little break in the weather, got to walk a bit on the Greenway. A bloody fantastic venture by Mayo County Council!  42km of a cycle track around the most beautiful parts of Mayo. We didn't have our bikes, so just walked a bit, and then the child ran around the skateboard track, while I did a little mini session on the outdoor gym. This outdoor gym idea is fantastic, and I wish we could get one here in Dingle. The folks were very quick to point out that Westport was voted best place to live in Ireland, Dingle being only about 15th...(They don’t actually know where Dingle came in, but liked teasing me about it.)

Next we went to Dublin City Centre. I have wanted to go to Dublin for ages. I chat to a good few Dub stitching tweeters and I’m always saying I’ll visit and never do. But, as I said this was the childs trip, and he needed pleasing...
Originally I’d planned a day in the zoo, but the days were a bit dodgy weather wise. So we visited The Ark, Imagonosity, National Museum, and the Natural History Museum. All of which I highly recommend. The child loved each one equally. And a quickie trip to Dun Laoighaire, I sneaked in the one thing I wanted to do: visit the newly opened Maritime Museum. Lovely little museum, and interesting for kids, including a huge light from the lighthouse, a sword from the founder of the Argentinean Navy, and lots of models of boats.

Then down to Kiltegan, Co. Wicklow for another 2 nights, to visit a friend. Chat, eat, watch movies and be ignored by the children who were all happily playing. Bliss!

Then finally home with a carload of laundry, 3 little ash trees and lots of cuttings from my ma. And I had a lovely surprise when I got home. An avocado plant! Years of sticking avocado stones in pots finally paid off.  This baby is growing fast! I've just had to repot it. I've now just stuck a few plum seeds in, you never know....

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