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Irish Spring Break

Irish Spring Break

An Irish Spring Break Getaway.                        March 4th-13th, 2011

After a week of midterms I was more than ready for spring break. Me and my friend Melody backed our bags for an adventure to Ireland. We woke up at 6:30 to get to the airport to catch our flight. We were so excited to experience new adventures and just get to Ireland and do the things we had planned… that didn’t last long. Our plane was late taking off which made us have a really tight connection in London. After taking off 45 minutes late and having to spend 35 minutes in a line for immigration we missed our connection.

After spending 100 pounds which is equal to 160 American dollars and redoing our whole schedule we got a new flight and  we were back on our way to Ireland… after a 10 our layover in the London Gatwick airport. After finally getting on the plane we arrived very late in Dublin and just went straight to sleep.

The next morning we woke up and decided to do a little bit of window shopping and explore Ireland. I loved Ireland the second we stepped off the plane. I am 100% Irish so I loved being there. We window shopped for a little bit because we were ending our trip in Dublin and didn’t want to explore everything just yet. We ended up finding a pub called O’Neill’s which I absolutely love because its my last name… so of course… I took a picture in front of it.

We wandered around Dublin and eventually met up with some other girls and took a 6:00 night bus to Galway. All of us ending up wandering around Galway and going to bed early because we were getting up early on Sunday to bike the Aran Islands.

While we were in Galway we stayed at a really cute bed and breakfast located in the center of Galway. We got up early to have breakfast before catching the ferry to the Aran Islands. We decided to be adventurous and try a traditional Irish Breakfast. IT WAS SO GOOD. After our breakfast we quickly headed to the bus, which took us to our ferry. It was very chilly that day so we were kind of skeptical of renting bikes but decided to do it anyways.

We quickly jumped on the bikes and began our tour of the main island Inis Mohr. It was absolutely beautiful. Although most of the route was up hill it was so pretty and the weather actually improved to where it was warm and the sun was out. We biked for a couple hours and covered the whole island. Although some of the sites where closed because it was their off season we were able to see most of the sites along this island. My favorite site was the Dun Aonghasa. It was a celtic stone fort, which gave you an entire view of the Island. They were absolutely beautiful and it was so cool to see because you could walk right up to the edge and hang your feet over the side. We stayed there for a good half an hour and hopped right back on our bikes and headed back to the main port.


We arrived at the port and grabbed a quick bite for lunch and grabbed the ferry back to Galway. Once we got back we quickly showered and met up with some of our friends who were also staying in Galway. We intended to go out but being a Sunday most people were not out. We ended up going to bed early because we were getting up to do the Cliffs of Mohr the next day.

Monday morning we woke up and again had our traditional Irish breakfast and headed on our way to the bus station to catch our tour to the Cliffs of Mohr.  We had a long bus ride to the cliffs but it was absolutely beautiful. The scenery we got to see along the way was so nice. It was completely different from anything I have ever seen. If you don’t believe me…. Look for yourself!

After spending the day at the cliffs we came back and caught a bus to Cork, Ireland. We ended up getting in fairly later so we ended up just getting something to eat and going to bed.

The next morning we woke up and headed out to the Blarney Castle where the Blarney stone is located. To get there we took the local bus, which dropped you off only a block away from the Blarney stone. The Blarney stone was a very pretty castle. Of course we went to the top of the castle and kissed the Blarney stone and continued on to walk the gardens which were beautiful.

Kissing the Blarney Stone!

(one of the things on my bucket list!)

One interesting thing about the gardens is that they have a set of stairs called “The Wishing Steps” and if you are able to walk up and down with your eyes closed your wish will come true… of course we did that. It then started to rain so we decided to go back into Cork and get lunch. My friend Melody and I went to a burger place in the center of Cork and it was amazing one thing interesting about Italy is that they never put real meat in there food so it was a great change from what we were eating.

Julie and I on top of Blarney Castle

Me, Julie and Brigid exploring the gardens

Me climbing the wishing steps!

Later that night Melody and I decided to go to a traditional Irish Pub and it was fabulous! We met new people, heard Irish music and drank Irish cider. We ended up staying out way to late and were so tired we went straight to bed when we got home.


The next day was pretty low key we did some window shopping and Melodys suitcase ended up breaking so we had to get a new one so we spent most of the day looking for the perfect suitcase. Later on that night we decided that we wanted to go see a movie. We went and saw No Strings Attached. It was actually very cute movie. We later returned back to our hostel packed our bags and went to bed because we were leaving early in the morning to go to Dublin.

Our alarm went off at 6:30am and we quickly changed and headed out to the bus station to catch a bus to Dublin that left at 8:00. Our bus ride ended up being four hours which put us in Dublin around 12. We quickly went to our hostel where we met Emily, Jackie and Carrie and headed out for horse back riding. Our horse back riding ended up being 30 minutes outside of Dublin in Wicklow. We arrived at the horse back riding place and got on our horses and were trained for about 30 minutes and then began our ride. We were taking up through the different forests of Wicklow and views were absolutely amazing. Our ride lasted about an hour and we then made our way back to Dublin where we had dinner. After having dinner we walked around a little bit then decided to go back and get some sleep because we had to get up early for a day tour.

We woke up early the next morning and did a tour of Wicklow National Park and different small towns surrounding Dublin. My favorite part of the trip was when we went to the location of where part of the movie P.S I Love You was filmed. That is one of my favorite movies so I was very excited to see this.

Melody, Me and Emily

Emily and I on the P.S. I Love You Bridge

Later on we got to see the land where the owner of Guinness lived, which is conveniently located just off Guinness lake.

Guinness Lake

Fun Fact: The owner of Guinness does not have any children and spends half his time in Ireland and the other in India (his wife is from there).

We stopped for lunch in this small little town called Avoca. After having lunch we then went to the Avoca Handweavers which was built in 1723 and is the oldest mill in Ireland. It was very cool and I ended up splurging and buying a pink and green blanket. After buying my gift for myself we then returned back to Dublin.


Part of the wool mill

Later that night we went to an Irish Dance at a local hotel. I highly recommend going to one. We went to the Irish Dance at the Arlington Hotel. It was so good before the dancing they had an irish band and then they were followed by the dancers. The dancers were so fantastic and I even got pulled up on stage!!

The Irish Dancers

Me on stage

After dancing we went out to explore the nightlife in Dublin and went to this place called the Temple Bar. If you are ever in Ireland go to Temple Bar you will not be disappointed. They had live bands performing and it was actually a huge bar. We ended up spending most of the night in Temple Bar and made some friends!

Me and Melody!

Melody, Me, Emily and our new friend Jessica

(jessica was in our hostel room with us!!)

The next day was our last day in Dublin and we spent it at the Guinness Factory. We took the Dublin tram, which dropped us off about 2 blocks away from the factory. The Guinness tour was a self-guided tour to see how they make Guinness Beer. It was actually very interesting and throughout the tour they had little demonstration videos showing the process. At the end you were able to see if you could pour the perfect pint of Guinness. Needless to say Emily and I perfected the perfect pint!

Emily and I poured the perfect pint!

We then returned for an afternoon of shopping and packing. We were very sad to leave Dublin but before we left we needed one night out before leaving. Our flight left early on Sunday morning so we decided that it was best that we do not go to sleep so we stayed out until 3 in the morning exploring the different pubs of Ireland. Finally at 4 we checked out of our hostel and walked up to O’Connell street where we caught the bus to the airport. We arrived at our gate and boarded it back to Rome.

Overall, Ireland was a fantastic and I encourage anyone who is studying abroad to visit it. This coming weekend I am staying in Rome however next weekend I am meeting my friends who are studying abroad in Madrid in London. I am very excited!! However, before I can get to this weekend I have take an Italian midterm… I realized that I am not good at Italian so this might not work out too well.

-All for now


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