Ireland With The Fam

Sunday, April 22, 2012

My family arrived bright and early on the 14th and they were kind enough to wait until they had settled into their hotel before they called to wake me up.  We didn't have much planned for their first day since I'm well aware of the pains of jet lag.  We spent the afternoon wandering around the Temple Bar area visiting the market and a few stores and having a late lunch / early dinner at Porterhouse.
Exploring Temple Bar
Day two of their visit here involved a road trip to the Cliffs of Moher.  The trip there was much more stressful than my bus tour because I was navigating while my dad was driving.  We had an extremely helpful GPS but even that wasn't enough to fully maneuver the roads of the Irish countryside.  Although my first visit to the cliffs had some great weather, it was even better on this trip.  There were almost no clouds in the sky and we were never overwhelmed by the fog that came on my first trip.
Dad and I at the cliffs
Unfortunately, my family's visit coincided with my last week of classes which is probably the most important week to attend. Because of this, on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday they did various things around Dublin without me.

My previous post covered the big events of Tuesday but i think this day was, overall, the best day of the trip!

After class on Wednesday I joined my family on a trip to Kilmainham Goal.  I was just there a few weeks beforehand but it was interesting visiting with another tour guide.  This time I heard a lot more about the political history of the museum though my first tour provided a few more interesting and somewhat gory tales of the jail that I think my sisters would have enjoyed more.

On Thursday we traveled down to Cork to visit Blarney Castle.  Many Irish seem to despise this as a tourist destination but my family thoroughly enjoyed it.  Everyone will firmly warn you that the stone is regularly peed on but with the pouring rain and hail we experienced when we reached the top of the castle, that was the least of my worries.  Exploring the castle and kissing the stone were also just a small part of the experience.  The grounds had a poisonous garden, caves, dungeons, and old druidic ruins.
Blarney Castle
Kissing the stone

Being goofy in the caves
Friday was my last day of classes for the semester (yay!) and I was so exhausted after that I stayed in while my family spent most of the day shopping.
Rainbow for finishing classes!
Saturday was our last day together :-(  They had only booked 6 nights in the hotel so they had to pack up and check out by 11 am.  This meant that I was getting four new roomies for the night!  Luckily my real roomie Kat was back in the States for a few days so there wasn't a huge overcrowding issue.  After dropping off their bags, we headed into the city centre to go on the Viking Splash Tour.  I have heard so many good things about this tour but I could never convince my friends to do it with me.  Luckily my family was up for it.  We got a great historical tour of the city and especially the parts which were once old viking settlements.  From there we put on life jackets and rolled into one of the canals.  I was hoping to see a bit more of the city by water but the parts we did get to see were still very interesting.  Our tour guide was amazing and hilarious so even if you weren't interested the the history of the city you could at least appreciate his jokes.

Such an attractive group of girls!
My family left very early this morning.  I'm sad that they are gone and it's made me realize that I miss home more than I thought.  I am, however, looking forward to just relaxing for a few days before I need to start studying for finals.


  1. hi..wiking..,nice

  2. sounds like a great time was had by all wish I was there