August 29, 2014

The Cliffs of Moher

For someone who was once borderline anti-people, I came to find that making new friends on my adventures was one of my favorite parts of traveling. One exceptionally fortunate encounter occurred in my sweet little town of Doolin. It was here, in my hostel, that I met four beyond-lovely girls, with whom I would spend the next two days. 

I was lucky enough to meet Vanessa, Chelsea, Katie, and Amelia before they had ventured up to the Cliffs of Moher. With our shared destination in mind, I joined them on a bus trip up the mountain to see what really should be considered one of the natural wonders of the world. 

Quintessential Ireland

I've often been asked why I chose the specific cities I chose to visit on my adventure. For some places, there is no reason at all, other than at the moment, it sounded fun. For other places, there's a bit more logic. For Doolin, Ireland it was one well advised recommendation that led me to what was immediately my favorite Irish village.

While on a trip in Germany (an un-blogged adventure, because, as is obvious by my infrequent posts, I'm a dang busy girl) a handy Bus2Alps tour leader told me that if I wanted to go to the Cliffs of Moher, I could not just take any old Paddy-Wagon tour, but rather that I HAD TO go visit the teeny little town of Doolin. He promised me that this nearly non-existant town, would be the quintessential Ireland I was hoping for. 

He did not lie. 

Doolin sits along the coast of County Clare, which in and of itself, is Ireland. Imagine being Hilary Swank in P.S. I love you, walking lost along a desolate Irish road, with sheep roaming around, then all-of-a-sudden, there's a beautiful Gerald Butler in your path. That's County Clare. Well, minus Gerald, but a girl can (day) dream. And with a population just around 500, surely Gerald's beautiful Irish family would live in Doolin, so you'd have to move there to a tiny cottage with cows and sheep and ....well I guess I'm getting a bit off point, but can you blame me?

I arrived (daydreaming) in Doolin, via the once-a-day bus, to find myself left on a street with a cafe, two pubs, and a hand full of hostels/b&b's. I easily enough found my new home, Rainbow Hostel, as the bus dropped me immediately in front of it, and there wasn't much else around to compete for my attention. 

August 12, 2014

Galway Girl

"Well, I took a stroll on the old long walk
Of a day -I-ay-I-ay
I met a little girl and we stopped to talk
On a grand soft day -I-ay-I-ay
And I ask you, friend, what's a fella to do
'Cause her hair was black blonde and her eyes were blue
And I knew right then I'd be takin' a whirl
Down the Salthill Prom with a Galway girl"
-Celtic Thunder

Galway is one of the culture capitals of Ireland, and my second stop on my Irish tour. When you have six days to explore an entire country, it's awfully challenging to choose where to go. I'll tell you, that I mainly chose Galway for two reasons: first, I was told downtown is the source of classic Irish pub music and second, this image on Pinterest. You should know by now, it doesn't take much more than a pretty picture to convince me. 

August 5, 2014

A day (and night) in Dublin

After 10 glorious days in Greece, I said farewell to Bre and headed off to Ireland. After a long day of travel I arrived at my hostel in Dublin, Abraham House, and hit the hay. 

I had just one day to explore Ireland's capital, so I started off bright and early. 

August 2, 2014

Endless sun

After Bre and I's morning at the pool we went and harassed Poppy about how to acquire a quad for the day, a process which proved to be surprisingly easy and cheap. We didn't even have to sign our lives away (like in ol'America). 

August 1, 2014

Lounging in Santorini

When Bre and I arrived in Santorini, there were clouds in the sky and sprinkles of rain falling. We were a bit dismayed by this weather, but quickly perked up as we arrived at our quaint Grecian retreat. 

Villa Manos is the perfect homey island escape destination (on a budget). For just $12 a night each, Bre and I got a large room to ourselves, with the added bonus of the nicest hotel staff in history. The woman who runs Villa Manos, Poppy, is about the sweetest lady on the planet, and essentially the greek mama you never had. Her and her husband run a pristine hotel, and are always willing to help you with any of your island needs. Bre and I went running to Poppy on more than one occasion over our 7 days stay trying to figure out how the hecky to get around the island.

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