Trip Start Dec 26, 2005
289Trip End Jan 25, 2009
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Where I stayed
The hostel is called Killarney's Railway Hostel. It has a homey feel to it... wooden floor boards, large living areas, well-equipped and clean kitchen, comfortable beds and a leather lounge suite to relax in. I think the smaller the hostel, the better
Last night ended up being quite unbearable and I started to question why I'm subjecting myself to this... I was in a very small, cramped 4 bed dorm. The 50 year old was weird ... and noisy. I desperately searched for my ear plugs, and alas, I found them... they are such an INDISPENSABLE item that I would never travel without. I was able to get to sleep but the room had a nasty musty smell to it. I attended to that by opening the creaky window. I never got to meet the other 2 guys - they got in after me last night. Didn't hear them thanks to the ear plugs. But one of them kind of gave me a nasty look this morning when I made a racket in packing my backpack and getting out of there at 9.30am.
The drive from Cork to Kilkenny took about an hour or so but enroute, I decided to stop in Blarney to visit the Castle. Blarney is situated 8km from Cork City and the historic castle is most famous for its stone which has the traditional power of conferring eloquence on all who kiss it... given that millions have kissed it, I passed. Instead, I made my wish on the wishing steps:) The word 'blarney' was introduced into the English language by Queen Elizabeth 1 and is described as pleasant talk, good repartee without offense..
I loved the grounds of the castle. The rock close and its surroundings is a most unique place of ancient trees... felt like I was trancing through the enchanted forest... The place definitely had an aura of magic and mistique with the wishing steps, witch's kitchen, druid's cave and many other dlights. It was like stepping back in time. Interesting.
I'm pretty much relaxing today. But I did fit in lunch at McSweeny's Pub... very typically Irish with excellent service and a great ambience. I had Chicken Curry with another Murphy's beer... black beer with a very creamy head. I thought I'd spoil myself given that I've been having very basic meals since leaving London... all for 12 euro.
Off to the Ring of Kerry tomorrow and then I'm kind of undecided as to what I'll do afterwards... probably drive up to Limerick, via the Dingle Peninsula.
I'm getting into Ireland... the east coast didn't really do much for me. But the beauty of the southern western coast is definitely setting in, and for the first time, I was starting to go 'wow' this is what I've come for. I'm loving seeing the castles etc and the beer is exquisite... such a great drinking experience.