Tonight, I am posting two blogs in one because yesterdays post failed.On Aug 13th we frove from Killarney to Cork where upon arrival we availed of an open top bus city tour which afforded us a good overview of the many churches, historic buildings and interesting architecture in the city.Next we went to a heritage visitor centre at Cobh (Cove) which was a major embarkation point for Irish emigrants destined for the U.S. and other points. Facility was well presented and afforded a useful insight into the conditions the emigrants endured.Final attraction for the day was Blarney Castle and the famous Blarney Stone. On balance this facility was better than I was expecting although still erring toward the “tacky”. The castle is very impressive and set in extensive and well maintained grounds incorporating woodland and gardens.We overnighted in Cork and experienced a somewhat farcical evening trying to find a restaurant with car parking. Eventually we gave up and took a take away back to our lodgings. Aug 14th (today),This morning we drove from Cork to Waterford, a journey which takes about 2 hours. En route we came across a thatcher at work (see image), a very ancient and special craft. Next we came to a sign for Mahon Falls but failed to find the site. As a consolation we encountered a tree covered in shoes and similar products.Next we arrived at the Waterford Crystal Visitor Centre where purchases were made. The manufacture of Waterford Crystal ceased in January due to bankruptcy but stock is still available. We next drove onto the Waterford waterfront and visited the 12th C Reginald’s Tower which occupies a site used from the Viking era in the 10th C.As we travelled to our destination of Dublin we came across the stunning ruins of Jerpoint Abbey which is a very well preserved Cistercian ruin with even a glimpse of painted plaster on a wall. There are many well preserved stone carvings. This site should not be overlooked. We were provided with a guided tour.Finally, we found our way to our lodgings, a task not made easy in Ireland due to absence of any post code system for GPS purposes.Tomorrow we are off for a tour of Dublin. Fingers crossed for dry weather!
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