For our second day in Dublin/ Ireland, we had booked a day trip to Cliffs of Moher with Irish Day Tours.
The Cliffs of Moher are -surprise- cliffs which are situated on the west coast of Ireland, in the county Clare. They rise over 200 meters above sea level at the highest point and are one of Ireland’s most popular tourist attractions with over a million visitors a year. The cliffs also briefly appeared in Harry Potter and the Half-blood Prince so of course I had to go see them!
And I certainly don’t regret that I did. They’re such a beautiful piece of nature.
Since the cliffs are located on the west coast of Ireland, and Dublin is on the east side, you of course have a long bus trip ahead of you. It takes about three hours to cross Ireland, but with Irish Day Tours there are quite a few stops to make the trip a little less lengthy.
Our guide for the day, Phil, was also really great at making the bus trip way more interesting. He had amazing facts about certain places we passed by bus but managed to keep them all short so it wouldn’t become too much. Perfect guide.
The first stop is just a “grab-a-coffee-at-a-rest-stop”-stop, but it’s already at a place with some meaning. It’s the Barack Obama plaza. The American president in fact does have Irish roots, and in 2011 he did visit Moneygall, the place where his great-great-great-great grandfather came from.
Then it was back on the bus, and off to the next stop, which was King John’s Castle in Limerick. Once again only a fifteen minute stop to stretch the legs and take a quick look at the 13th century castle.
From there, it was in one straight line to the beautiful Cliffs of Moher. We got one hour and a half to wander around the area, which is plenty of time to go see the most lovely views. You should definitely go up to O’Brien Tower, at which point the cliffs are the highest. The tower was built in 1835 and served as an observation tower.
If our time hadn’t been limited by the bus driver, I swear I could have stared at this wonder of nature for the rest of my life. But we did have more to see, so it was time to hit the road.
After a quick stop for lunch, we drove on along the west coast of Ireland to a place called Grimlin, also known as the ‘Mini-Cliffs’. These aren’t as spectacular as the Cliffs of Moher, but they’re beautiful on their own as well. Definitely worth a stop.
But while we didn’t stop everywhere, there were so many lovely places we passed. I tried to take a few pictures, but of course the window of the bus often was a bitch.
Our second to last stop before heading back to Dublin, was the Corcomroe Abbey, a 13th century cisterian monastary. I was mostly intrigued by one tomb stone on the graveyard, which has such a lovely inscription.
Last we headed to Dunguaire Castle near Kinvarra. This is a 16th century tower house which is 75 meters high. It isn’t all that impressive, but it’s a lovely scenery.
By 7pm, we were back in Dublin. Just in time to grab some dinner to finish this amazing day.
The “Cliffs of Moher’ day tour of Irish Day Tours departs every day from the Molly Malone statue in the center of Dublin at 6:50 am. The actual busses are waiting on Dame Street, but the meeting point is the statue. From there, the guide will take you to the busses. Make sure you are early (even earlier than the 6:40am they recommend) so you can get a nice seat on the bus and can sit together with your friends/ family. This tour costs 45 euros for one adult, which I think it an amazing price for what you get. I definitely recommend this tour and would definitely use this day tour company again. Perfect way to explore another bit of Ireland while in Dublin.
Until next time,
With love, Ellen