Sometimes the traditional, touristy countries such as Ireland go off our DINK radar as we explore new and interesting lands. But, Ireland is always a good, cheaper option if you want to explore some serious land and a country rich in culture. It's so easy to get around by train in Ireland, so always make sure you have some good luggage with wheels. And then, you'll be ready to go to Ireland!
DUBLIN - It's a very cool city; go to Trinity College and see the Book of Kells, which rests amongst a Harry Potter-esque library in a very old setting. Downtown Dublin brags the historic Temple Bar, filled with food and traditional Irish music; after a few Stouts, you can head down the street in search of traditional stew which is hearty and tasty. Visit the Guinness Storehouse, which even if you aren't a fan of the beer you'll be sure to enjoy here - bold, filling and smooth, there is no taste like it when it's fresh from the barrel! If you're interested, you can also paruse the massive gift store and get some awesome fuzzy, Guinness slippers similar to this DINKs' and possibly Samantha Brown's. Go find the church that boasts the 700-year old crusader, and be sure to touch his hand; after having afternoon tea in a crypt, venture inside the oldest building in Dublin. It's a city with no boundaries to exploration, and as DINKs we know that best!
ENNIS, COUNTY CLARE - You'll definitely want to see the Cliffs of Moher as it's a sight to see in Ireland. But, before you do that, go stay in the Adare Manor in Ennis - you'll be glad you did. After staying for only one night, you'll love the luxury setting, food, and comforts that surround this awesome place. Currently owned by a retired United States Marine, don't forget to stop by the memorial in front of the manor house itself in honor of those who have served our great country. If you're real brave, you can request a Hawk Walk with the local game keeper, hold an owl and take some falcons on a serious nature walk; you'll love it, because these DINKs did! Walk out the gates of Adare into the small, cozy town of Ennis for some light shopping, brews and fare. Hire a private car for the day from Adare, where your driver will give you a tour of the route on the way to the Cliffs of Moher - just spectacular and a must-see day trip.
CORK - We loved Cork City; Blarney Castle (and you may or may not choose to kiss the stone!), Saint Finne-Barr's Cathedral, and multiple areas to see. If you really want some Ireland greenery, head to the Old Kinsale Irish Golf Links, a premier golf course and resort. University College Cork, Old Town of Kinsale, and then have fun determining the best route to Gougane Barra, which is your amazing, photographic town set along the water. Find everything you want and more in Cork!
GALWAY - A small, pictureesque city set along the waterfront, this town was the origin of the Claddagh symbol. You can see the last midievil road in the area (thanks Samantha Brown!), walk along the River Corrib, visit Galway Cathedral, and be sure to walk around downtown Galway - all day. Stop for some great food, coffee, and cake as you gaze amongst what used to be a fishing town and has now transformed into a bustling college town. It's your last stop, so take some time to smell the Irish air.
Our fast-paced life is one that we DINKs treasure, but the slow time is also a time that we may cherish the most. Enjoy Ireland!
(Photo Credit: Cliffs of Moher - Wright Studios Photography, 2011)
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