Thursday, the last day of our tour, we started off by visiting the grave site of William Butler Yeats.
Next was a cruise down the River Shannon. We boarded our ship and yummy sandwiches were already waiting for us on the table. An entertainer told jokes and played Irish music for us as we traveled leisurely along the banks, catching sight of wild life and some wonderful landscape.
|These swans reminded me of the Irish legend of the Children of Lir. Lir was a king and he had four children who were beautiful and talented and their stepmother was jealous and turned them into swans which broke their father's heart.|
I thought our entertainer had a lovely voice!
After our cruise we headed to Dublin. The coach dropped us off near Trinity College for a couple of hours and we went to see the Book of Kells and the library, built in the 18th century. This is still a working college so there were students everywhere and you did feel like you were walking across a college campus instead of in the heart of Dublin. The Book of Kells is a ninth century highly illustrated book of the gospels discovered in a, you guessed it, peat bog. (How it wasn't lost to the world is truly a miracle. The picture below is from the library's Long Room. George Lucas wanted to copy its design to use as the Jedi library, but they refused to let him take pictures so he simply recreated it from memory. Over 200,000 old books are housed here.
I forgot to add these photos, and I'm not sure what day it was on, but we crossed over the Shannon from County Kerry to County Clare. We drove our bus onto a ferry at Tarbert and took a twenty minute journey to the other side. It was very blustery, so no one got out to view the crossing on the upper deck. Looking out my window I could see a little snack shop built into the ferry, and little more. I took the photos as the ferry was coming in to dock.
|Here's one I forgot to add from The Brooks Hotel in Dublin|
Then we walked to see the National Art Gallery, but they had very little to see as they were undergoing renovations. So, what else had we to do than spend the rest of our time in a pub. We entered one and found Cheryl and Woody there, and soon our guide Steven joined us. We enjoyed our time until it was time to head back to our last castle for the night, The Fitzpatrick Castle Hotel.
|These were roomier than twins, so we just used one.|
|I love that their pub was called the Dungeon!|
|The whole crew with Max, the dog.|
We had a Farewell Dinner (I had Sticky Caramel Pudding, which was awesome!) with wine and a toast to our tour guide. In the morning our bus took us to the airport. Customs was easy, I slept most of the flight home. We retrieved our car from hotel parking and had a fairly eventless ride home. A spectacular sunset welcomed us. It was a wonderful trip, but always good to arrive our your own doorstep!
Thank any of you that have stayed with me through the whole journey! It was nice sharing our memories with you! I hope you'll come back again soon. Happy Halloween!