Where is: halfway between point A and point B and boasts a large medieval castle with beautiful views? If you guessed our next “along the way stop” on our journey around Ireland, then you guessed right! Of course it wouldn’t be right if we didn’t get a late start and losing the car keys didn’t help, but once we got all that sorted*, we were off! As expected the drive was beautiful and we saw many tower house ruins along with the ever present cows and sheep!
King John’s Castle
Along the way from Killarney to Galway… Limerick, Ireland
111 km from Killarney
We weren’t sure what to expect at King Johns’ Castle, but I do love a good castle and we had to stop for lunch anyway so why not just eat lunch at the castle? Although we had limited time in Limerick and I can’t speak to the city itself, I highly recommend King John’s Castle, especially if you’re traveling with kids!
I loved that it had the traditional castle look compete with ramparts and crenelations and the kids really enjoyed exploring the castle and its many interactive displays and activities. They both participated in a scavenger hunt which became a friendly competition between them! I will mention that the castle cafe turned out to be pretty terrible as they ran out of food and the line was painfully slow, notice I didn’t say long. So you don’t go there for the food…
However, the views from the castle ramparts were beautiful and I lucked out and saw them just before the torrential rains caught us! Getting to the carpark was an adventure in itself! Just as we left the castle the sky opened up and literally drenched us! It didn’t help that Tim and I each ran to the wrong (right?) sides of the car and then had to switch sides. Even with the heat blasting it was two hours before we dried off!
Always one to go along with my photo antics, Simon was kind enough to
pose humor me and we I had some fun with the castle’s many props!
The Cliffs of Moher
Leaving Limerick with plenty of daylight to spare we set off for the Cliffs of Moher and crossed our fingers in the hopes that the skies would be clear by the time we arrived. Believe it or not, these magnificent cliffs which rise vertically almost 700 feet straight out of the sea and stretch for 5 miles are not the tallest cliffs in Ireland, however, they are the most famous and a definite must see if you’re visiting the West Coast of the Emerald Isle.
The Cliffs of Moher
Along the way from Limerick to Galway… Just south of the Village of Doolin in County Clare, Ireland
78 km from Limerick
Lucky for us the skies were clear when we arrived although it was very windy! The weather is never boring in Ireland! The views from the cliff top walkways near the visitor center were breathtaking, but judging by the silly antics of the boys I could tell they were over it within just a few minutes. It had already been a long day and in hindsight visiting at the end of an already full day was probably not the best idea.
There is a walk along the cliff tops , but we were running out of daylight and weren’t really dressed for a hike, so we satisfied ourselves with a good long look over the edge and then spent time in the visitor center. The center is fairly new and very well done with interactive exhibits, a restaurant and a gift shop.
If you’re looking for a slightly different view point, you can walk up O’Brien’s Tower. We discovered these wedding rings on the tower bulletin board left there by a woman honoring her nana’s last wish… very sweet.
Next Stop: Galway!
*Seems like for us Killarney and transportation just didn’t mix!