Sunday, September 13, 2015

Day 5 - Cork to Killarney

Italics tour company description.

7th September 2015: CORK TO KILLARNEY. THE WILD ATLANTIC WAY. After breakfast you will
meet with your driver/guide and depart Kinsale. You will travel along the wild and rugged south and
west coast, part of Ireland’s famous tourist route the Wild Atlantic Way. First you can make a stop to
view the breath-taking scenery at the Old Head of Kinsale. 

Wild Atlantic Way
Old Head Kinsale - Mick managed to talk us into the grounds of this private golf course.

Travel along the coastline to Skibbereen and around Bantry Bay, One of the world’s largest natural harbours. Today is all about the very best of Irish scenery truly breath-taking panoramas that present a new vista with every mile. 

Mick had wanted to take us to Bantry House but it had changed its hours and was now closed on Mondays.

But no worries time for a coffee break in Bantry.

And on to the town of Ballinspittle...
The phenomenon attracted worldwide attention in 1985 when crowds thronged to see the statue of the Virgin Mary in the Co Cork area.


A former garda sergeant says he was teased in his station because he saw the statue float in mid-air during the height of the marvel that captivated Ireland. But in a documentary to celebrate the 20th anniversary of Ballinspittle he says he is adamant that he witnessed a miracle in the tiny Cork village.

There will be plenty of photo stops your will also travel onto the Beara Peninsula and over the Caha Pass where you can walk from Cork to the Kingdom of Kerry enjoying some stunning views.

Cormorants diving.

 There will be time for lunch in any of the picturesque villages and also time to stop in Kenmare for some shopping.

We have lunch in O Donnabhain;s (O'Donovan's) in Kenmare.

Back on the road.

Again, not on the itinerary, Mick suggests we visit Ross Castle and we are just in time for the last tour. No photography allowed within the castle.

 Ross Castle sits on the edge of Killarney's lower lake and was built by O'Donoghue Mór in the 15th century. The Castle came into the hands of the Brownes who became the Earls of Kenmare and owned an extensive portion of the lands that are now part of Killarney National Park . Legend has it that O'Donoghue still exists in a deep slumber under the waters of Lough Leane. On the first morning of May every seven years he rises from the lake on his magnificent white horse and circles the lake. Anyone catching a glimpse of him is said to be assured of good fortune for the rest of their lives. The large rock at the entrance to the bay is known as O'Donoghue's prison. Ross Castle was the last stronghold in Munster to hold out against Cromwell. It was eventually taken by General Ludlow in 1652.

Things we learned:
The front door, on the inside of the anteroom, was constructed of two layers of thick Irish oak, one layer 90 degrees to the other with the boards riveted together. If the door was a single layer with the wood fibres going in a single direction, it would have been possible to split the door. The second cross layer prevented that. The door opened inward and was backed by two heavy beams fitted into the stone structure.

The spiral staircase, located in the front left corner, was built in a clockwise direction. Attackers, ascending up would have their sword in their right hand and would be impeded by the center structure of the staircase. Defenders, facing down, would have their swords swinging at the outer part of the staircase giving them an advantage.

In addition, the stairs were of uneven height to throw off an attacker's charge by interfering with his gait.

These staircases are hard to climb! We already had one in Blarney Castle.

 In the late afternoon you will arrive in Killarney which will be your bases for 2 nights. 

Accommodation is included at The Aghadoe Heights Hotel in a lake side deluxe room. A superb 5 star hotel located with incredible views over Killarney and Lough Leane the largest of the lakes. You will bid farewell to your driver/guide this evening. The hotel offers a free shuttle to town to enjoy Ireland’s most famous tourist town and all of the great pubs and restaurants.

We reach "our castle" for the next two nights around 6PM.

The view out our window.

We meet for dinner in the pub of the restaurant and I had plaice.


  1. I am now becoming truly envious, and look at the weather you are having! I am slightly puzzled that comments are appearing on your blog but not mine.

  2. So lovely. I really must get there someday


This blog does not allow anonymous comments.