Road Tripping Ireland, Part 1

After meeting the challenge of getting our car out of Dublin at rush hour, we headed north in our luggage-packed, full-sized Skoda Superb. Our final destination was to be Portrush, Northern Ireland, but we had a few plans along the way.

Our first plan was to stop at Newgrange, an ancient burial mound located about 30 minutes north of Dublin. We quickly learned a valuable lesson:  double check your GPS with a map and some further reading. It took us through tiny country roads, where weeds whipped the side of the car even when not passing oncoming traffic. After the “boony-bashing” adventure, we wound up at the site, but were told that you actually have to park at another location (30 minutes away) and be bussed in to the very place where we had parked. Seeing that this kind of an episode would put us hours off track (“government planning at its best,” an Irish woman told us), we drove our way back to the highway, northbound once again.

As the terrain changed from flat to hilly, so did the country. We crossed the border into Northern Ireland speedily, something that was not so easy in times past, when we would have been greeted by checkpoints and heavy military presence. We quickly noticed a “pleasantness,” with colorful, nice houses with well-manicured lawns sitting upon the rolling terrain.

Bypassing Belfast, we headed farther north where we met the coastline. It wasn’t long before we arrived at Giant’s Causeway, a stop that was accidentally timed to perfection. The dreary Ireland skies cleared and the tour buses had departed, leaving a beautiful evening to explore the causeway.  My pictures will later tell a better story; it was simply beautiful here, and I wouldn’t recommend that you visit Ireland without stopping here. 

After trekking the causeway, we cruised to our stop in Portrush.  It was late evening, and we went out for what to date still is the best meal of our trip at the Harbour Bar & Restaurant. The next day we would be departing for Galway City.

**”Editor’s note**  I am sad to be terribly behind on posts, and right now in a big rush (forgive my typos). The wifi situation has been unfriendly, but I hope to catch up soon…

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