Thursday, July 3, 2008

Ireland - Part 3: The Countryside

We had attempted to get to Skellig Michael today, but we were unlucky; the ocean wasn't cooperating, and we were told that it was too dangerous to go out (it's a 10-mile boat trip from the coast of Co. Kerry to the Skelligs, and apparently the ocean can be rough enough to deter travel). But this was okay, because except for a few brief showers this morning, the weather was perfect - sunny and warm and breezy and I got sunburned because of it. We spent the day doing something that I actually enjoy almost more than organized travel: Driving around aimlessly and coming across interesting things to look at.

In our driving around, we discovered St. Brendan's Well; climbed Geokaun Mountain (which has very many sheep prancing about, and which overlooks the Fogher Cliffs, on Valentia Island); hung out on the beach at Valentia Island; and meandered through the remains of the Ballinskelligs Priory (12th Century remains). This took pretty much all day, but since there was no rush, and because we had to agenda nor any place to be, it was really nice to just drive around and be outside.

We rested at our B & B - which we are leaving tomorrow, whether or not we get to Skellig Michael (we have a reservation on the boat in the morning, but our actual going will depend on the conditions of the ocean) - and went to the local seafood restaurant for an amazing seafood dinner; they offered a hot and cold seafood plate that was just really fresh and simple and delicious - smoked salmon, wild salmon, deep fried squid, crab salad, shrimp with a sauce over it, and a type of cooked fish whose name I forget. It was really excellent.

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