10 day tour of Ireland to come …….. Our personal driver in ireland, Peter has the pleasure this week in taking 12 lovely ladies around Ireland. Day 1 – Dingle Peninsula and Slea Head Drive. The craic was mighty as we boarded our 12 seater luxury Mercedes Sprinter. The morning dew was lifting ond our spirits were definitely high. The time had come to experience Dingle. Would it be how they had always dreamed ……
There is no other landscape in western Europe with the density and variety of archaeological monuments as the Dingle Peninsula. This mountainous finger of land which juts into the Atlantic Ocean has supported various tribes and populations for almost 6,000 years. Because of the peninsula’s remote location, and lack of specialised agriculture, there is a remarkable preservation of over 2,000 monuments.
Our first stop was Conor Pass. Right from the top we could see back to Tralee over the Brandon Mountains and what a view it was. The cameras were out and the shutters were going at a hundred miles an hour :-)
Then on to Dingle village for a wonder around and lunch in a delightful pub called John Benny’s. What a wonderful selection of seafood they had. Full to the brim we paid a visit to Dingle harbour and took a boat ride to see “Fungi the Dolphin” who has been a resident of Dingle for 20 years.
Slea Head drive was our next adventure and this stunning scenery is probably the best coastal scenery this country has to offer. It is also well known as filming location for Hollywood movie “Ryan’s Daughter”
Gallarus oratory gets more famous as it grows older. This outpost of christian civilisation is about 1300 years old – built in the seventh century. Shaped like an upturned boat the roof was perfectly corbelled by men who placed every stone in God’s name. This little church has been ravaged and pillaged by Vikings, Normans and Saxons over many years. Weather-beaten by Atlantic gales it is still waterproof and perfectly preserved.
We now reach an area called Fahan where we see the largest collection of stone dwellings in Ireland. These buildings, known as ‘beehive huts’ because of their shape were built and inhabited in early Christian times by a people about which we know very little but this only adds to the air of mystery, which surrounds this settlement.
Our fantastic B&B for the night is the Castlewood House. What a surprise we got on walking in. This is not just any ordinary B&B. It’s style, elegance and attention to detail is exemplary. The staff here went above and beyond the call of duty to get us settled in and ready for a night of relaxtion after our long but wonderful day…..