a trip to ireland part i
let's start with a little background on cian and i: we've been together since sophomore year of high school (you can do the math) and the only family i have ever known of his are his mom, dad, and brother - as well has his one grandmother. the rest of his family (his dad's entire side) is, and always has been, living in ireland! cian has been visiting his family every other year since he was a baby, and has left me behind a few times since we've been dating...
needless to say, i've been dreaming of going to ireland with him for a long, long time. last year, as a gift for both of our college graduations, his parents surprised us with a trip there! i couldn't contain my excitement and asked if we could go that summer - but cian said he really wanted us all to go (his brother and his girlfriend, as well as his parents). reluctantly, i agreed to wait until the following summer - what's another year of waiting after all this time?
well, a year went by very fast and we boarded our aer lingus plane to ireland on july 26th, 2017 and would not be returning to boston until a whopping 18 days later! we flew into shannon airport where we picked up our rental car and headed up to galway. cian's dad is from county cork, but his brother shane, his girlfriend tina, cian and myself wanted to do some extra traveling around the country, so we headed north for a few nights. we stayed at the ardilaun hotel (highly recommended) which was settled outside of the city center down a quiet, quaint little road. the concierge was amazing and gave us a list of the best places to go while there in galway. the city center wasn't too busy and the latin quarter was where everything was happening - all the best bars, shops and restaurants - so we walked around there a few times exploring and being tourists.
our second day in galway, we drove down to county clare to see the much anticipated cliffs of moher. i was so excited to do this, and i can't even describe how incredible that day was - although, it did start off a bit stressful. shane had booked us a tour before we even left boston, and we had a whole day planned on a bus that would take us from galway to the cliffs, as well as a boat tour around them and to the aran islands. we got to the bus station plenty early, but as the departure time neared closer and closer, we could tell something was up. shane called the company that he booked the tour through and learned that it was cancelled due to rough seas so the boat couldn't go out. it was definitely a little disappointing because the tour sounded so cool, but we simply decided to just drive ourselves. it actually worked out for the best because we were able to take our time, go see what we wanted to see, and experience it just the five of us.
we lucked out with the weather - no fog, no rain, just clouds and the perfect amount of sunshine. i've heard of people going to see the cliffs but the fog was so bad that they couldn't see a thing - thank you God for blessing us with a beautiful day! tina (who is a professional photographer) and i did our thing and snapped hundreds of pictures, even going right up to the edge a few times to get the best possible shots. it was such an incredible feeling - a bit of nerves because we were so high up and the wind was definitely a little nerve-wracking, but the adrenaline was pumping too - i've never felt anything like it!
i've decided to break these posts up into a few parts because we did so many things while we were there. i'll be sharing my favorite spots, but for now, here are some more pictures from the cliffs :)