Ireland Day 6: Dingle Peninsula
We got an early start so we could attempt to watch the sunrise at Inch Beach plus we had a lot to cover today.
Inch Beach with Storm Diana
It was cold and rainy when we left in the morning and not a soul was around. Little did we know there was a tropical storm in effect. We arrived at Inch Beach and the beautiful sunrise photoshoot was not looking promising! So we put on our rain pants and ponchos and headed out into the windy, rainy beach. It was so windy that if I didn’t have gloves on my hands were instantly frozen. Our ponchos were flying all over the place.
It was hard to enjoy the beauty that this beach probably had to offer but we got quite a few laughs because the wind was so strong. I didn’t take my nice camera out so I snapped a few shots with my phone and took a couple videos.
We decided to move on to our tour around the Dingle Peninsula.
Town of Dingle
Since the weather wasn’t very nice I don’t think a lot of people were out and about. We walked around town and not a lot was open. We ended up stopping at the local supermarket to use the bathroom and get a morning snack since we didn’t have breakfast.
I walked into the marina a little bit and there were some fun boats. Dingle is the home of the dolphin named Fungie so there are quite a few boat tours that go out to see Fungie. None were running at the time and I would not want to go out in the ocean in stormy conditions.
Slea Head Drive
I noticed as we were driving that it was a lot less commercialized on the Dingle Peninsula and all signs were in English and Gaelic. It felt more like Ireland as it was in the past and less touristy.
We only got a little lost once and had to pull over and ask the man fixing a roof which way to go. He was extremely helpful and pointed us in the right direction. Not all roads have names so it can get a little confusing at times. The drive was gorgeous and the weather was actually sunny. Weather can change instantly here as we came to find out.
The Blasket Islands used to be inhabited until 1953 when the government evacuated the 22 inhabitants because of increasingly extreme weather which left the island cut off from emergency services.
There is a ferry that leaves from Dunquin (Dun Chaoin) Pier and takes people to visit the Great Blasket Island for day trips and some overnight campers. We did not stop at the pier, but it looks really cool from pictures. The Great Blasket Island is the most westerly point in Europe.
We stopped at the Slea Head Viewingpoint that overlooked the islands and the Slea Head Beach at Coumeenoole. We then went on our way back to Dingle because the Slea Head Drive starts and ends in Dingle. The town was a little bit busier then the first time we stopped.
Along the way through the Dingle Peninsula we could take the same way we came or we could take Conor’s Pass. My mom is not a fan of high mountain passes but since I was driving she let me decide if we were going to go on Conor’s Pass.
I decided to go for it because I didn’t want to miss it. We were a little apprehensive and I questioned my decision as we were entering the pass because there were a lot of signs about dangerous conditions.
Luckily, it wasn’t nearly as bad as we thought, which my mom appreciated. There was a delightful waterfall that we stopped at along the way which made the road worth it.
I think Healy’s Pass was much more scary if you don’t like being on mountain roads. We made it through the pass and started towards Tralee.
There were a few stops I had marked as possible stops but we were kind of tired and we almost missed this one. We went past it and then decided after much debate to turn around because the views from the road looked beautiful and of course I didn’t want to miss anything.
I am so happy we turned around and made it to this beach. It was my favorite beach that we stopped at! There were a ton of shells and rocks which I’m a sucker for. It was much calmer than inch beach but still a bit chilly and the water was ice cold.
The conditions were perfect because it wasn’t too windy and the sun was peaking out in between clouds. We stayed for a bit because we had the time but we were starting to get really hungry so we made our way back to head to Tralee.
We tried to stop at a couple restaurants along the way but they were closed. We made it to Tralee but this was a very large town that was super busy and all I wanted to do was get through it. We decided to find something just out of town. We were on a main highway now and there was this cute little restaurant with a big sign that said food served so we pulled right in.
It was delicious and extremely reasonable! For all 3 of us it was only €32. It really hit the spot. Now we were headed to Adare to stay at our castle which we were really excited about.
We went through Adare and came up to this beautiful gated entrance and wondered um, is this it! We passed it then turned around and sure enough this was where we were staying the night!! The men at the gate greeted us and we were granted access. We drove through the grounds and entered through the castle and they greeted us at the door and took our luggage.
I have never stayed at this fancy of a hotel so it was quite the experience. Everyone was so friendly and we went into this room to check in and they walked us to our room where our luggage was awaiting us. We were staying in the new part and the woman explained their renovations and a bit about the manor. The room was stunning from the chandelier to the fresh fruit to the linens to the bathroom.
Oh my goodness this was THE most beautiful hotel I’ve ever stayed at! We splurged a bit to stay here but let me tell you it was worth every Euro! The bed was the most comfortable bed I’ve laid in and there was an iPad that controlled all the room settings. The lights had a setting for each time of day and if you got up in the middle of the night, the dimmed hallway lights automatically came on. The bathroom was everything you would dream of with heated floors and double doors.
Since we ate already we decided to go to the bar and get a drink and dessert. We walked around and checked out all the different rooms and the ballroom was like a fairytale! Since Adare Manor started with an A, everything had an A on it which was perfect for me because I felt like everything was personalized for me, haha. After we checked out the whole manor we came back to enjoy our room.