---------------THE AMERICANS TOUR OF IRELAND---------------------
-------------I'll try to captivate you all one more day!!------
As we move down the coast to some more lovely scenery ------we enter a village called Kinvara where there is a wonderfully restored castle named --DUNGUAIRE CASTLE----(doon-guire)--
There are no different views of the castle as it sits alone and was a fortress in its day. It's beginnings date to the 6th century to a high King of Cannot------The castle itself was built in 1520 and in the last century the tower and defense wall were restored. It is considered to be one of the most photographed castles in Ireland---It is now a place here they have "Medieval dinner" which are great fun.--The personnel are dressed in medieval dress and one is served food generally believed to be the food of the day.----Some years ago there were no forks or knives----but some tourists complained-------so there you are!!We didn't stop for that -----the dinners have become quite expensive now.--
Still running south down the coast we are finally confronted with the stunningly beautiful ---CLIFFS OF MOHER--One of Ireland's top visitor attractions.
They rise in a sheer wall for approximately 800 feet and run 8 kilometers down the coast (5 miles)-----They are a refuge to major colonies of cliff dwelling sea birds.
The drop to the Atlantic is an awesome sight ---especially if you are standing near the edge-----which one can do!!
We move further down the coast past many small but charming and enchanting village. On a bright day it's quite lovely.----We finally get to the town of -TRALEE--which will be fairly well known to some of you??!!?!? It is the home of the ROSE OF TRALEE BEAUTY PAGEANT----which is held every year----anyone of Irish decent with roots in Ireland may enter--regardless of where you live.---Sorry--18 to 26 only---unmarried.-------------
As we begin to leave Tralee we come across Ireland's only working windmill----It is now a tourist attraction with tea-room and all.
This area was originally a seaport from which the Irish emigrated at the time of the famine--------It was from this seaport that one of the ships "The Jennie Johnston" sailed for several voyages and is the only ship never to have lost a passenger.
from this point we move into a mountainous area heading for the Dingle Peninsula. These are the "Slieve Mish Mts"-----yes, that's Gaelic and no, I can't translate it-----We now enter one of the most stunning mountain passes that I have ever seen. It is only a two lane road---no buses or campers .
Looking down the edge of the road (if you can unclasp your fingers from the car seat)----the deep valley is full of small lakes and the most gorgeous mixtures of green.---When you get to the peak there is a parking lot to take pictures------We then head down the mountain and into the village of Dingle.=====This hurts my feelings because I knew it before the commercial folks found it-------Boy, can they mess up a good thing.!!
There is a drive out of Dingle called Slea head Drive----it circles the outer rim of the peninsula-----included in this drive is a building called an "Oratory"----It is a 1000 year old religious meeting for prayer----it has a stone 'corbelled' roof ( this is large stones layered upon each other to make a roof---there is no mortar or anything to seal it)--after more than 1000 years--it still does not leak!!! (Builders--please note!
One of the fun attractions is a dolphin which has adopted Dingle and stays in the Bay---Of course they now have boat rides to the area to see if you can see "Funghi"
This is what they have named him!!?!??
You are almost free of these ramblings------We drove back North to Claremorris and rested a day------Dingle was an overnight----------We then went to Ireland highly regarded Stone Age PassageTomb
Newgrange is considered to be the WORLD'S oldest building-------It was built about 1000 years before Stonehenge and centuries before the Great Pyramids of Egypt.---The white facade of the building is the ORIGINAL marble that has been restored to it's original placement. It is now a World Heritage Center and is very protected because people were picking the marble pieces for souvenirs.----There has been a lot of archaeological work on it and in 1969 Archaeologist working 15 feet underground in the passage found that on the Winter Solstice-----a thin beam of sunlight channelled through a precisely aligned opening (third picture) flooding the inner chamber with a blinding light. At no other time does it do this/ ------It is felt that the tombs were built by a lost technologically advanced civilization who managed to move 200,000 tons of stone some 50 miles to build them. Before the wheel was invented.!! There is no known reason why they were built!
My dear friends were enthralled by everything they had seen----Ireland is really a magical place-------I am beginning to think that I really do have fairies at the bottom of my garden
----------------------I do so hope that everyone who reads has enjoyed!!!
I doubled on a picture--but I can't fix it----sorry!!