Our fourth day in Ireland was a bit rocky for three reasons:
- We visited the Cliffs of Moher (Unforgettable!)
- We trekked 80 feet below ground into Doolin Cave (Fun!)
- I felt nauseous almost the entire day (Awful.)
Let’s start with the fun stuff!
Ryan and I got moving rather early on Monday morning because we knew we had a lot of driving ahead of us if we wanted to see the Cliffs of Moher and Doolin Cave before making the final push to Galway where we planned to spend the night.
When we began to piece together our trip to Ireland, the most popular thing people said to us was, “You must visit the Cliffs of Moher!”
And now I can see why!
They were, without a doubt, one of the most gorgeous displays of nature I’ve ever seen in my entire life.
After a three-plus hour drive from the Dingle Peninsula, Ryan and I parked our car at the visitor’s center and spent about 20 minutes inside walking around reading the various plaques before making the brief walk out to the cliffs.
It was absolutely freezing as the icy-cold wind whipped at our faces, but once we were able to see over the edge, we were blown away by the majestic views and forgot about the cold.
I only wish my pictures could begin to do it justice. It really is one of those breathtaking sights you must see in person. Incredible!
If if weren’t for the frigid weather (and my nausea), Ryan and I agreed that we could’ve easily spent hours hiking along the cliffs but after about 45 minutes, the wind made me feel like my quads and face were turning to ice. It was intense! I’m just glad that it wasn’t foggy and that we were able to take in the gorgeous views. (I only wish we could’ve seen the puffins that apparently nest on the cliffs later in the year. How cool would that be!?)
After our time at the Cliffs of Moher, we drove for less than 10 minutes before we reached the tiny town of Doolin.
Ryan and I weren’t done with adventure for the day just yet and had plans to pop into Doolin Cave to see the third largest stalactite in the world.
We’re serious spelunkers, after all!
Truth be told, once we lined up with our small group to enter the cave, I had second thoughts and had to have a pep talk with the guide before I felt comfortable with the idea of walking down into the cave to see the stalactite. I explained my issues with claustrophobia to him and he assured me I’d always be able to quickly backtrack and find my way out if I ever felt panicked.
The only time I felt uneasy was right after we descended the seven flights of stairs and entered the tunnel leading to the stalactite. I made sure I was at the very back of the line just in case I needed to make a beeline for the exit, but everything was well lit and once we made our way out to the center of the cave, it was quite spacious.
The stalactite was HUGE and the pictures fail to capture its true size.
It is 23 feet long and still dripping!
Does anyone else remember learning mnemonic devices in grade school pertaining to stalactites and stalagmites? I still remember learning that the word stalactite contains the letter “c” so it grows from the ceiling while the word stalagmite contains the letter “g” and grows from the ground and several members of our tour remembered learning the exact same thing. Mnemonic devices work, I’m tellin’ ya!
Once we were done exploring Doolin Cave, we planned to see The Burren, but my nausea fully kicked in and I ended up buckling up my seatbelt in the backseat of our car and curling up to try to sleep as Ryan drove us to Galway. I felt awful for being such a cruddy travel buddy but I just couldn’t shake the nausea I was feeling for most of the day. I joked that it was all the germs from kissing the Blarney Stone that did me in!
I’ll see ya in a bit with a recap of our time in Galway!