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Next Up: Our Ireland Road Trip
Posted By Daniel Noll On October 1, 2013 @ 2:09 pm In Europe,Ireland,Travel | 34 Comments
Ireland is one of the few countries in Europe that has eluded us all these years. An upcoming road trip around Ireland to discover its landscape, meet its people, and capture a few stories – with a focus on the in-between places – aims to correct that.
When I hear Danny Boy, I get a little misty. How can you not?
For us, Ireland is a fabled land. When I imagine driving around the island, images of soft green hills with western edged harsh cliffs dance in my head. Pepper the landscape with pub-dotted villages and pub-goers who double as storytellers at night and you have my limited sense of what Ireland will be like.
For all our time in Europe, we’ve never been to Ireland to see how much of this is fairy tale and how much of it is rooted in reality.
We’ll spend the first few days in Dublin attending and giving the closing keynote at TBEX, a travel blogging conference. After a few days of conference sessions, parties, pints of Guinness and catching up with other blogging friends we’ll take off on our own with a rental car to explore the rest of the island.
The route we’ve planned for our road trip will take us from Dublin through Brú na Bóinne, Giant’s Causeway, Connemara, Galway, Dingle, Cliffs of Moher, and Cork.
But the magic: all the places in between. And all the people we hope to meet along the way.
That’s the freedom and joy of a road trip. Here’s a general trajectory of our route, beginning from Dublin, heading counter-clockwise to return.
We’ll overnight in bed and breakfasts and family-run accommodation in Dundalk (County Louth), Donegal, Westport (County Mayo), Ballyvaughan (County Clare), Killarney (County Kerry), Portmagee (County Kerry), and Lapps Quay (County Cork) along the way.
Although neither of us can claim Irish blood, we both have stepfathers of Irish heritage with whom we’re very close. They don’t have the opportunity to travel these days, so we’ll also look to our Ireland journey as a way for them to travel vicariously through us, to reconnect them through our photos and stories to the Ireland of their heritage.
What should we aim to see in Ireland? Places to stop off along our drive? Something off the beaten trail? A favorite little pub for a pint? A village that should not be missed for lunch? A shepherd’s pie to die for? A walking or hiking trail that we should follow to work it off? A specific whiskey to warm us up? Where are the stories hiding and where should the people not be missed?
What is that quintessential Irish experience that most travelers miss?
We’d love your help. If you have recommendations on what we else we should do or whom we should meet or where we should eat, we’d love to hear from you!
Although we may not get to everything, know that we read and factor all suggestions into our travel decision-making process.
We will share our Ireland road trip using the hash tag #dna2ireland on Twitter, Instagram and we’ll also post photos and updates to Facebook and Google+ along the way. So join in on the virtual journey with us!
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