This post won’t contain a recipe. It’s all about our vacation! 🙂
Woooweee! What a fun time hub Christopher and I just had. We were globe trotting! Uh-huh, yes we were! The picture above is all of our luggage. We rock on packing and not bringing too much. 🙂
We spent 10 days abroad – from September 13th to September 23rd. Our first stop was Dublin, Ireland. We spent 4 full days there and I’m going to write about the first half of our vacation for this post, our Ireland trip. The next post will be the second half of our vacation: a trip to Rome, Italy.
Other than being exhausted when we first arrived, it was such a fun trip. We didn’t bring our nice camera so all the photos were taken with our iPhones.
When we reached Dublin Airport, we took a bus and although the ticket agent gave us the wrong information so that we got off at the wrong stop, a nice man helped us and pointed us in the right direction. Of course, we had to walk a long ways to get to our hotel, which was a challenge, since our flight was a red-eye and we didn’t sleep on the plane.
We stayed at the North Star Hotel & Premier Club Suites. I highly recommend the hotel. We were on the 7th floor, which I guess houses the Premier rooms. I just wanted a king bed; that was my only criteria. One of the perks of its being premier was that we got to use the 7th floor lounge where there was a complimentary breakfast (sort of like continental) in the morning; bottled water, coffee, tea and biscuits (cookies to us USA peeps) all day. We saved quite a bit of money on water as we helped ourselves frequently.
Since our flight didn’t get into Dublin until 8:00 a.m. the morning of the 14th and hotel check-in wasn’t until 2:00, we decided to pay for the night of the 13th. That way, as soon as we reached the hotel we could check in and crash if we wanted to. That turned out to be the right thing to do! We had a quick breakfast and then took a nap for 2 hours (yes, we did set our alarm).
We have travelled overseas before and we never really know the best way to handle jet lag. We have done it different ways: slept when we’ve gotten to the destination; stayed up until “their time zone” bed time; and this time we napped for a short time. I think we found the right combination – the napping seemed to work.
After our nap, we were typical tourists. We had lunch and after a pint at the neighborhood pub, fish and chips for dinner. Miraculously we made it until 8:30 that night before we crashed. The weird thing was that we both woke up around midnight and were awake for a few hours. So, say we got back to sleep around 2:30, we proceeded to sleep until NOON.
Yeeks! Christopher nudged me from sleep and showed me the time on his phone. 12:06 pm. It was like he touched me with a cattle prod. I sprang out of bed and was trying to get my bearings. I couldn’t believe we slept so long. We must have needed it!
Ireland is such a beautiful country. We only saw a small portion of it but boy, is it green. We took a bus tour outside of the city and went to see an ancient monastery at Glendalough. Although it was beautiful countryside, I have to admit I was a little disappointed. I thought we would be touring an ornate monastery. Um, nope. Here’s the extent of it. There were a lot of ruins and even though it wasn’t what I was expecting, it was pretty cool.
This was an old church. As you can see, it’s pretty much ruins. I don’t know the gentleman in the picture but he wasn’t moving and I had things to do, places to see. Like the one below.
The water and lakes were pretty though and it was a nice walk by them. (The iPhone cameras, as good as they are, just don’t do justice to the real colors.)
I guess actor Daniel Day Lewis lives in this area (Wicklow county) and has done a lot of charity fund raising, which I thought was great. Here’s the last picture of the monastery.
It isn’t a leaning tower, it was just the angle of the photograph.
The highlight of the tour was the Powerscourt Estate.
We ate lunch at the Avoca Terrace Café right on the estate. It had a spectacular view and boy, what a delish lunch! We had a selection of dishes (quiche, butternut squash soup, three different veggie combo salads, a scone and a chocolate chip cookie) and enjoyed each one of them. One of the things I loved about Ireland is the Irish brown bread. I’m going to blog a recipe real soon! I can’t wait to share it with you.
Back to Powerscourt. It is a vast 47 acres. The gardens are simply stunning; they include an Italian garden, a Japanese garden (a couple of acres), a pet cemetery, lots of trees, statues, fountains and beautiful flowers.
The two pictures below are of this rock/pebble mosaic, very impressive and beautiful. It’s hard to depict how beautiful it was.
You can’t really tell by the picture, but the steps below are sloping. Isn’t it beautiful?
More pictures of the estate. We were there late afternoon, so the shadows are long when the sun was out; then clouds rolled in. It was very picturesque.
Cool tree. Sparks the imagination!
Peek a BOO!
Interesting wall below, which you see when you enter a grotto through the narrow opening above, walk all the way to the back and look up.
Dublin was easy to get around. We took the subway (mostly the Luas trains). We took pictures of this funny leaning seat. Otherwise, we walked everywhere. We had to, such delicious treats and meals. We had to walk off the calories until the next meal. 🙂
Look, it’s a picture of dear ole’ hubby Christopher!
And of course, Moi! Love the angle. Christopher is SO artistic.
We also toured the Guinness Storehouse Museum – now, that was fun and took longer than I thought. It’s a self guided tour and at the end of it, you get a pint of Guinness to enjoy at the 36o degree rooftop bar. Simply stunning. Full disclosure, we didn’t drink our pints up at that bar. Too many people, so we went down to the bar/lounge two floors below and enjoyed our pints there.
Guinness. *Bows head, moment of silence*
So, we spent 4 full days in Ireland. We can’t wait to go back and spend more time there.