Dingle

In July we took a spur of the moment weekend trip to the Dingle Peninsula, and it ended up being our favorite weekend trip in Ireland. We’d love to go back and spend more time there some day.

It was a bit long of a drive for a weekend trip, but every moment of the weekend was magical, from driving through the rolling, verdant hills lined with rock walls, to exploring the colorful and welcoming town of Dingle itself, with its many pubs playing trad music every night of the week.

On our drive there, we stopped to pay homage (and pick up snacks for the drive) to a leader we miss dearly in these days of The Oompa Loompa Who Shall not be Named, at the nearly famous Barrack Obama Plaza- a gas station near the village of Moneygall, where Obama’s third great Grandfather lived before he emigrated to the US.

Our next stop was Inch Beach, where I did something we didn’t think was a thing in Ireland- surf. The water was warm and pleasant, and despite the torrential downpour that started halfway through the surfing session, it was a surreal experience that I’d love to do again someday. Sitting on a surfboard, surrounded by a beautiful landscape with the salty sea beneath me and warm rain falling from above, was one of those moments where you feel completely alive.

After an afternoon of surfing, we continued on to Dingle. We checked into our AirBnb, meandered through the town’s narrow streets, explored shops and art galleries, had dinner at a Pizza Jazz Bar, and ended the night pub hopping. Like speed dating for pub music, we sampled everything from traditional Irish music played on instruments we’d never seen before to more modern music, eventually settling at a pub that had a bit of everything where the energy was pulsating.

The next day we drove around the Dingle Peninsula along a route called the Wild Atlantic Way. We were driving down a very narrow road, winding through rugged coastline and rolling hills rich with farmland and ancient historical sights. We drove through the breathtaking Slea Head, wishing we had more time to see sights such as Michael Skellig, The Blasket Islands, and Dunmore Head (the westernmost point in Europe). It was a stunning drive nonetheless, even if it left us wanting more. Besides discovering that Dingle is our favorite place in Ireland thus far, we learned that 12 hours of driving is far too much for a day and half trip. 🙂

-Neal

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