Today was the day I had been waiting for. No, not my birthday though we would be receiving a gift.
Today was the day that we would kiss the Blarney Stone and receive the Gift of Gab.
Our first stop on our way to County Cork, was the Rock of Cashel. If you’re unfamiliar with the legend surrounding the Rock of Cashel, you can read all about it here. But long story short: Patrick went to confront the devil who was plotting his evil plan to plunge Europe into the Dark Ages. While attempting to escape, the Devil took a bite out of a mountain (nicknamed the Devil’s Bit) and then spit the rock at Patrick, who he was unhappy with having been made a fool of, however the rock ended up landing in the middle of the plains of Tipperary, it’s current location.
We began hiking up the small hill towards the buildings surrounding the Rock, when we finally saw it.
Welp, there it was. And honestly, it was pretty cool. We explored the surrounding buildings including the artifacts inside the visitor center, but naturally it was the fields of greens that captured most of my attention.
Once we deported from the Rock of Cashel, we were headed towards Blarney.
Upon arrival we were given a map of the entire Blarney Castle area and suggested to to get on the line for the stone as it was the most popular attraction here. (obviously) Of course, being the tourists that we are, we decided to knock this must-do off the list first. The entire hike up to the tower didn’t take more than 35 minutes, but the walk up is interesting in itself. The most recent structure that is Blarney Castle was built in 1446, so the layout and room arrangement is something completely different than anything you may have seen. To get to each room you had to walk either up or down the spiral staircase, which I assume caused much trouble if two people ended up walking in opposite directions, considering how narrow the staircase is.
At last we had been gifted with the gift of gab!
While most people come to Blarney with their sights set on the stone, I personally feel that Blarney Gardens are the real highlight. To be honest, we knew not much about the gardens before our visit but considering we had so much extra time we spent a couple of hours roaming. Not only were the gardens, which seem to be right out of a fantasy storybook, completely spectacular but we’ve already planned on returning in the future without a guide, so we could spend a good half day exploring every nook and cranny.
I highly suggest that anyone who has time during their trip to County Cork, to check out the stunning Blarney Gardens. And sure, kiss the stone while you’re there too.
We had one final stop on our tour: Cork City.
Similar to Galway as the last stop on our Cliffs of Moher tour, this stop should’ve probably been eliminated entirely.
Not that Cork City doesn’t seem worth the visit. Quite the contrary; it seems like it deserves and actual visit. 45 minutes to explore a city seems a bit unnecessary and as if they just wanted to add another destination to the tour itinerary.
However, we attempted to roam the couple of blocks closest to the bus and take a quick look around the English Market. Cork City, we will return.
Once home at our castle in Dublin, we decided to have our second dinner at the Knight’s Bar and didn’t regret it one bit.
It hit us during this meal that tomorrow would be our final day in Ireland before we headed off to London. It’s safe to say there is no sadder day than one’s final day in Ireland.
Read about the rest of our Ireland Adventure:
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