Had another huge day driving today – leaving at 7am was probably a good move otherwise I’d still be getting to Killarney at midnight. Being used to driving holidays, I took the long way, minor roads and following the coast. I’d also read and heard that the Ring of Beara was about half a long as the Ring of Kerry and nowhere near as busy so that sounded good to me.
The not working cable car to Dursey Island
There’s a cable car that runs from the end of the Beara Peninsular across to Dursey Island that I thought would be cool to catch so that’s where I headed. On the N71 through towns with the best names, Kinsale, Clonakilty, Skibareen, Ballydehob, Bantry, Glengarriff; then the R572 right down to Inchinaleega where the cable car was NOT WORKING!!!! I waited for almost an hour and as there wasn’t anyone to ask questions of, and it was still on the island with no sign of moving, I just cut my losses and left. Is there a pattern emerging here???
I did find another quaint little place in my travels today, it could have been part of either Puxley Castle or O’Sullivan Beara Castle, or not – there were two signs nearby but neither actually told me what the building was. It was rather cute whatever it was.
Unexpected treasures in Ireland
So back to my trusty maps and up the other side of the Beara Peninsular on the R572 to the R571 – I do like these numbered roads, makes things quite easy to follow – unless you’re in towns, that is. I was going okay until I got to Killarney and couldn’t get service to run Google maps, but the lovely Greta from Algret B&B gave me great directions on the phone so I arrived not too frazzled.
I never thought I’d say this but the only thing I wanted to do when I arrived (apart from a quick shower) was to go for a walk – after 2 days driving I’m well and truly ready to hit the pavement again. One thing about Ireland so far, at least the rain is just drizzle, it doesn’t soak you in 2 seconds like at home – in case you didn’t catch my drift, it was still raining. I wonder if I’d have enjoyed everything about Algret B&B if Cork hadn’t been such a dump? Well, I did enjoy having a nice place to stay, maybe I’m a bit of a princess after all.
Hope you enjoy the pics.
Only in Ireland – on the roadside, in the middle of nowhere
Overcast again/still – in Ireland
Blue sky and green grass – Ireland
So many contrasts
On the road to Beara Peninsular
Cute ruins south east Ireland
Beara Peninsular, Ireland
Leaving Dursey Island behind
Ring of Beara, Ireland
Where the green meets the ocean, Ireland
Ring of Beara
The wild side of Ireland
My drive by shooting skills are improving – ruins on Beara Peninsular
Amazing – one of the beaches around the Beara Peninsular
And now for something different, but still on the Beara Peninsular
And the weather still hasn’t improved!
I am on a road here, not trespassing, really
Aha, the road did make a sharp turn
The road follows the ocean and it’s just beautiful – the Ring of Beara
Wow, another driveby – the valley through the wire and mist, coming into Killarney
Mottarone Cable Car
2nd June 2012
We had about 5 minutes after we got back from the islands to drop our gear and meet back in the lobby to head to the cable car station. Only 14 of the 30 in the group came along but I’m so glad I went as it was great fun. The cable car station was about 15 minutes walk from the hotel and it took close to half an hour to reach the top via 2 cable cars and a chair-lift. There was once a tram from Stressa to Mottarone but it last ran in 1963 and all the tracks were demolished not long afterwards
On a clear day you can see 7 lakes from the top of Mount Mottarone but there was a lot of mist and cloud around so we didn’t get to see them all but what we could see was spectacular.
Our tour guide had told us about a toboggan ride we could take while at the top so we all ended up having a go, terrific fun, just like a litter roller coaster ride – without the loops of course. The toboggans were double but I went on my own. You just controlled your speed with the brake/accelerator handles. At the bottom of the ride you were supposed to stay on and it then pulled you back up the hill in two stages. One of the guys had got off his and was standing there looking very lost when I came along so I offered him a lift not thinking what it would look like with him sitting between my legs when we got back to the top. He was really worried that his partner would find out so among the hilarity of it all everyone decided “what happens on the mountain stays on the mountain” – even though it was totally innocent.
Mottarone chair-lift and toboggan ride
Another of the men had his tripod and I showed him how to set the timer so we took a couple of group photos which turned out really well. It was a great few hours and I think we all loosened up quite a bit with each other after the toboggan ride. There was a little inn where you change from the chairlift to the cable car so we stopped there for a drink. I had a shot that was a bit like Bailey’s Irish Cream except it had an eggnog type taste. It also had peach in it and was served warm – it was called something like “fille de fleur”. I asked the guide about four times and still couldn’t understand what he was saying so thought the best solution would be to just smile and nod! We almost missed the last cable car back down, we only made it by seconds – but then that’s where half the fun lies when you’re travelling isn’t it?
Lake Maggiore islands from cable car
About 20 of the group went to a restaurant for dinner that night that the tour guide organized for us. It was just a normal Italian place where they passed around heaps of different dishes for first course, really rare beef and veges for second course and strudel for third. It was good to have proper Italian food instead of Americanized hotel food. I had my first taste of Italian red wine and loved it, no headache either! Dale’s captain turned up for a drink and a few more compliments, he didn’t get far with her – but he was entertaining. It really was the best day so far from start to finish.
Oh wow, the wonders of the internet! I googled the drink I had that I couldn’t understand the name of earlier and found this site. It’s called Fil da Fer so I wan’t too far wrong I guess – except I don’t know where on earth I got the bit about peach – must have been dreaming again!!