Patterico's Pontifications


Question: Where to Go in Ireland?

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 2:02 pm

If someone were going to be in Ireland for a little more than a week, where would they want to go and what would they want to see?

Hypothetically speaking, that is.

28 Responses to “Question: Where to Go in Ireland?”

  1. I’d go to the south – Limerick, Cork, Tipperary, Killarney – not for any particular sights but to relax and soak in the local flavor. Rest assured that the Irish tourist bureau can discover a distant relative you can send the occasional check to since your name shows an obvious connection with Saint Patrick.

    Enjoy your week.

    John Boddie (18ca17)

  2. My wife and I really, really enjoyed Galway. The Cliffs of Mohar you will recognized from “The Princess Bride.” And the Aran islands are beautiful—all the stone walls are made from fossil bearing limestone.

    The Irish people were very nice to us. But everything you have ever watched or read about antipathy toward the English is really true.

    Our cab driver in Dublin: “Just 70 kilometers up the road, the bootheel of the English is still upon Irish throats.”

    To hear about the Famines still takes my breath away.

    Our tour guide to the Cliffs: “Then there was the murdering psychopath Cromwell…” I didn’t reply that was no way to speak of the Lord Protector.

    Seriously, I felt welcome and relaxed. The weather when we were there was wonderful, but it is usually pretty rainy.

    Simon Jester (c8876d)

  3. You could easily spend a long time there.

    Simon Jester (c8876d)

  4. Is this hypothetical someone already in Ireland or planning to go?

    DRJ (2b49a4)

  5. Cliff’s of Mohar are a definite yes. Bunratty Castle. Dublin. If anyone you are with happens to be into crystal, Waterford might be a stop. What kind of experience are you looking for?

    Nic (896fdf)

  6. There used to be, and might still be, a week long coach tour originating in Dublin that slowly tours the perimeter of the island stopping at the key sights. The island is not large. In about 9 hours one can drive from corner to corner. From Jan 1996 to Aug 1998 I was living in Dublin and working in Drogheda. Fabulous experience.

    LTMG (05d2fd)


    [preparing my butt for the swift kick it deserves]

    BuDuh (abc770)

  8. I was going to suggest that too, BuDuh, but had an attack of sanity.

    Kevin M (ed969f)

  9. Most importantly, if you can find out where your family came from, go to that area. There is a very sacred feeling treading upon the same ground on which your ancestors trod. I went to the small town from which my great-great-grandfather emigrated, but unfortunately we could not find any records of him at the local church. The young Irish priest (who had played semi-pro soccer in Chicago while using someone else’s Social Security Number) explained that their small town had been an embarkation point for a portion of the entire county, so it’s likely that this part of my Irish family came from an even smaller village than we realized.

    JVW (c20b43)

  10. Having said that, I’m with Simon Jester: Galway is not to be missed.

    JVW (c20b43)

  11. Also, if you don’t consult Atlas Obscura you might miss out on something really cool.

    JVW (03a183)

  12. The farthest back we can trace my family name is Ireland, but it sure isn’t Irish.

    That said, it was a lovely place.

    In a cafe, a young woman brought me my coffee. “Thank you, ma’am,” I told her.

    In that lovely Galwegian accent, she replied “I know you are a traveler, but please do not call me ‘ma’am.”

    I’m very sorry,” I replied. “What should I call you?”

    She smiled. “You should call me ‘Miss’.”

    I hate to tell you, but my calling a young woman ‘Miss” would get me into trouble in America,” I told her.

    That’s mental,” she replied, and patted me on the shoulder.

    Like I wrote, it’s a nice place.

    Simon Jester (c8876d)

  13. “I hate to tell you, but my calling a young woman ‘Miss” would get me into trouble in America,” I told her.

    “That’s mental,” she replied, and patted me on the shoulder.

    I love it. And hearing it in that beguiling Irish accent (especially evidenced by the Misses) would probably crack my heart of stone.

    JVW (01190f)

  14. Simon Jester (c8876d) — 8/28/2023 @ 12:16 pm

    Great story, Simon. Please share more anecdotes. Lord knows I do. 😛

    norcal (345e4d)

  15. As you might suspect, Simon, my people are Irish, too. Came over during the Famine, worked the railroads west.

    Never been, would like to go.

    Kevin M (ed969f)

  16. For the longest time, Kevin, I thought my family name came from Scotland (I have my great great grandfather’s journal). But the generation before that, in the 1730s, Ireland. My DNA analysis is clear. Not even any Spanish blood. Just Scots, Irish, and some Finnish. And I look nothing like it. Oh well.

    By the way, AllahNick made me laugh out loud today:

    “When Fulton County inmate P01135809’s mugshot was first released last Thursday, a number of adjectives likely jumped into your mind. Dour. Husky. Orange.”

    Simon Jester (c8876d)

  17. “Don’t you think he looks tired?”

    Kevin M (ed969f)

  18. I can’t advise you where to go, but I can tell you where to skip: The town with the killer chicken.

    Paul Montagu (d52d7d)

  19. Kevin #18: One of my fondest possessions is a signed photograph of David Tennant as the Doctor. He was a very fun fellow to meet.

    Well, I also have two Petri dishes signed by Nick Offerman, urging me to “whole ass” one thing instead of “half ass” two things.

    Simon Jester (e7a752)

  20. I’ve only been to Northern Ireland, around Belfast. Sad I couldn’t visit the Republic but I loved it. I’m a musician and played in some pubs and churches. I was taken in by an older couple about my parents’ age and they spoiled the hell out of me. Food, tea, travel. Gab. Lasses, Misses. Craic. Moors. Castles. We had a damn ball. Except. The Irish are hard to impress. I’m used to getting accolades for my talent here in the States. You know how Americans are: “Awesome!! Great! High Five!” Belfastians are more stoic when it comes to giving praise. But very hospitable. They’ve seen a lot, “the Troubles” have taken their toll, and another thing they don’t like is sanctimonious Americans preaching at them or acting like they have anything to tell them about how to think about that history. To know facts is one thing. To live it is another. And those divisions and resentments are still there, in minds and hearts. But it’s a great and beautiful place.

    JRH (d6d8f8)

  21. It’s interesting, JRH. I would never dream of being a visitor to another country and criticizing it to people who live there. As a result, the few places that I have been are very welcoming and kind.

    In grad school, I was always shocked by German students carrying on about how “fascistic” America was, while being supported on American grant money.

    I kept my mouth shut, and imagined I was listening to the theme from “Hogan’s Heroes.”

    Simon Jester (c8876d)

  22. I would never dream of being a visitor to another country and criticizing it to people who live there.

    I’ve met more than a few foreign visitors to the US who have no problem doing that.

    Kevin M (ed969f)

  23. It’s interesting to me how posts like this bring out people who don’t comment much. I see three such people who have contributed to this thread.

    Welcome, folks! Don’t be shy to weigh in on the political pieces.

    norcal (48b8e7)

  24. It’s actually pretty depressing, norcal. Both parties have gone insane, from my perspective.

    It’s true I always viewed voting as between crappy and slightly less crappy choices. But nowadays, it seems so much worse.

    Simon Jester (e7a752)

  25. It’s true I always viewed voting as between crappy and slightly less crappy choices.

    Simon Jester (e7a752) — 8/29/2023 @ 7:56 pm

    Simon, that is certainly the case if it’s Biden versus Trump again.

    The key is to objectively weigh the harms each one presents. Overall. Not just policy.

    norcal (1c3541)

  26. I spent 10 days in Ireland with my wife’s family, who’s Matriarch emigrated in 1912 at age 16, from the little village of Kineagh. (we saw the two-room cottage where her parents raised 11 kids on two acres of land, still standing…) We stayed at Thurles, and visited the Rock of Cashel, the Waterford glassworks, and many sights in Dublin, including the Guiness and Jameson museums. Wonderful time!

    Bruce Abbott (f6826b)

  27. I love Waterford crystal. I would enjoy that tour.

    DRJ (2b49a4)

Powered by WordPress.

Page loaded in: 0.1152 secs.