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Monday, March 14, 2011

After the Zoo!

We continued up to the very North of Ireland to Derry, constant rain, freezing cold.
Stayed in a beautiful old Country House Hotel.....even President Clinton has stayed there!

It would have looked a whole lot prettier in the sunshine.
We were in a new annexe.....see the upper dormer room with the two windows open. A huge room with a six foot bed and sofas.
The first house was built in 1622,burned to the ground in 1638 during a rebellion, a second house built in 1661 was also burned to the ground by a retreating army.
Rebuilt again in 1739, this time they had more luck!
The house is packed full of history and character, round every turn there is something to enjoy including two splendid chess sets laid out to tempt you to move a piece.
The gardens must be lovely in the sunshine, It stopped raining just enough to get some photos.
There were Grey Squirrels running up and down the trees!

The funny thing about staying in these gorgeous Hotels in March is that we may be the only people staying there. Such is the recession.
We would have liked to have walked round the historic walled town of Derry but it was just too cold.
So it was a drive up into County Donegal (another first for us) to the most northerly point of Ireland to Malin Head.
As children we listened to the radio as we didn't have televisions. After the news came the shipping forecast, I can here the drone of the voice now as he reeled off the names of the most far flung coastal points of the British Isles. he would give the windspeed and direction and whether it was moderating in the near future.
The names were all so intriguing and now I have visited a few of the, Malin Head is one that I well remember.
The weather was atrocious, gales of sleet from the east sweeping across the road so that we could hardly see through the windscreen. Sleet piled up at the side of the road.

 The road up to the head was spectacular...
The weather changing every few minutes.
At the end of the road we drank a cup of coffee,it was too windy to even think of getting out of the wonder this spot was picked for the shipping forecast!
WE didn't even get a peep at what the view was beyond these information boards.
See the sleet at the side of the road.
To one side of us was the watch tower..
Hope you can read some of these details.
 Good bye watch tower!
Goodbye County Donegal.
Next day it was a long old drive from the almost the very top of Ireland to almost the very bottom.
The further south we went the warmer it got...but it was still raining.
I was glad to get home!
Now back to tatting!!


  1. What a shame it was too cold to explore! - but the views were probably better enjoyed from a warm car.
    Staying at that wonderful hotel would have been holiday enough for me - it's gorgeous!
    How long did it take to drive from the top of Ireland to the bottom?
    My youngest daughter fell in love with Ireland when she was there about 4 years ago - she wanted to stay there,she said,but couldn't get a job as she is a teacher and was told that all teachers have to be able to teach in Gaelic!

  2. Wow, the weather changes were remarkable, but in spite of them all, your photos are was almost as if I were peeking out of the back seat, hee hee!

  3. I almost smelled the sea and felt the spray. Love standing at the edge in those winds...only my experience was where the Columbia River met the Pacific Ocean with pounding waves. Exhilarating!
    Do so enjoy your travelogues...thank you from one who doesn’t get far beyond her room very often; but, has memories of beautiful sights.
    xx bj

  4. The hotel is beautiful! I wonder when they rebuilt those two times if they changed the plans or if the buildings would have looked the same as it is now. Beautiful photos of the surrounging area.

  5. Another wonderful travel post with pictures! Thank you so much from someone that loves to travel -- but I'm doing it from my armchair this year, so I am very much enjoying your photos of Ireland. It's one of my favorite places to visit.

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  7. Hi Maureen,i sure was glad of the warm car, we didn't even turn the engine off while we drank our coffee! It took us 7 hours to do the drive but we prob stopped for about an hour in about 6 hrs driving.
    At one time for all public service jobs ability to communicate with the public in Irish was necessary.At one time all University lectures had to as well as students could ask to be taught in Irish. But that's gone now for a long time, it is still be true in Primary schools, they not only have to be able to teach Irish but be able to teach a range of subjects thro' Irish, this is no longer the case for secondary schools teachers.

    Thanks IsDihara and Ridgetatter for reading and commenting.

    Hi Carol, I wouldn't think that the houses would be similar in style. the poor fellow who built the first house didn't even get to live in it as he was shot dead in a land dispute with a local family!
    Hi Jane and Witty Prmt thanks for your encouragement.

  8. Such gorgeous photos... ugh.. I am so jealous of the beauty there! Nothing like that where I live. Thanks for showing them!

  9. Thanks batatter, Indian is beautiful to me...not quite as green!


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