There’s lots to do within a days drive in Ireland but it does rain a lot!
The mountains are only a short drive to the south of Dublin. There are miles of blanket bogs and great open spaces as you drive around.
This was originally a castle built in the 13th century. It was altered in the 18th century but destroyed by fire in 1974. In 1990 it was completely renovated but the main attraction is the 47 acre garden. Apparently it is number four in the top ten gardens of the world – after Versailles, Kew and Butchart Gardens. Having been to them all I really think Butchart should be first but maybe that’s because I like lots of flowers in a garden. Obviously my next adventure must be to number five – Villa D’este in Tivoli, Italy although I’d never heard of it.
This grand passage tomb was built around 3200 BC and was definitely a highlight of our holiday. It was built by stone age farmers and is older than the pyramids or Stonehenge. Its huge, with kerb stones decorated with neolithic art. A passage leads to a chamber with alcoves and at the winter solstice a beam of light floods through a roof box and illuminates the chamber for seventeen minutes. There is a lottery at the visitor centre to win tickets for this once a year marvel but the odds are not good – everyone who visits wants to win!
A Walk Along the Boyne
The riverside near Trim castle is is a great place to walk. You can see the ruins of Saint Mary’s Abbey and even if you don’t go in the castle you get great views just walking round (even if its raining).
A longer drive, but worth it, you have to visit the iconic Giants Causeway.
The Giants Causeway
40,000 basalt columns on the coast in county Antrim, its a world heritage site but you don’t need to pay to go into the visitor centre unless you want to. Some of the hexagonal columns are up to thirty nine feet high and very impressive.The columns were caused by volcanic activity sixty million years ago . Or of course by the Irish Giant Finn MacCool who built a causeway to Scotland to fight his giant enemy Benandonner.