Thursday, June 23, 2016

Breathtaking Dingle Peninsula, County Kerry. . . . . . . . .

Such a beautiful place. . . . . . . 
. . . . named after the main town of Dingle, the Dingle Peninsula is commonly called
 Corca Dhuibhne in Irish (anglicized as something like Corkaguiny). 
It is the northernmost of the major peninsulas in County Kerry, ending beyond
 the town of Dingle at Dunmore Head, the westernmost point of Ireland and
 arguably Europe.

I'm sure you will agree that this dramatic scenery is exceptionally beautiful. I have to 
add that it was also very peaceful when we visited prior to the arrival of the 
 Summer crowds. Our day trip was cool and mostly cloudy with a few patches of 
sunshine, but again no rain. On arrival in Killarney, our base for four
 nights, we checked weather forecasts and realized we had a two day window for
 possible sunny days so made our tour reservations ahead to ensure seats on coaches.

This, the most western end of the peninsula is a Gaeltacht (meaning an 
Irish-speaking area) that has produced many notable authors and poets.  

As I mentioned in my last post, I'm obsessed with the story of the
 Blasket Islands, particularly Great Blasket, where the small population
 survived the potato famine and remained until 1953 when the government
 evacuated the island, many of the inhabitants emigrating to
 Springfield, Massachusetts.
There are six principal Blasket Islands. The northermost is Inishtooskert
(Inis Tuaisceart in Irish), also known as An Fear Marbh (the dead man) or
 the Sleeping Giant due to its appearance when viewed from the eastern
 mainland as here in my photo.

This was the closest I managed to get to visiting Great Blasket Island - next time
 I plan to be on a boat and going ashore!

The Three Sisters headland. . . . . . . along the dramatic Wild Atlantic Way.
This current movie site brought much excitement to many of our fellow passengers 
on the coach tour. I admit to not being a Star Wars fan.
Unable to get permission to film again on the distant island Skellig Michael, a UNESCO 
world heritage site where scenes were shot for Star Wars VII: The Force Awakens, the 
Irish government allowed Disney Lucasfilm to build a replica of the historic site on
the mainland. Contractors built a 1.5 km metal roadway to transport the heavy
equipment overland.

More to my liking was our guide's information about the the lovely beach,
 Inch Strand. Here a much admired movie, 'Ryan's Daughter' (1970) with Robert Mitchum
 and Sarah Miles was filmed. Scenes were also filmed at nearby Slea Head and
 Coumeenole Beach. Set in the aftermath of the 1916 Easter Rising,
 I plan to watch this movie again soon. 
Also planning a second viewing of 'Far and Away' (1992) with Nicole Kidman
 and Tom Cruise, which was partly filmed in this same area.

Cafe and beach/surf shop at Inch Strand - one of Ireland's most beautiful beaches
and very popular for surfing.

We truly fell in love with the Dingle Peninsula and will definitely put it on our
 'let's go back' list. Another visit to Western Ireland is required - we saw a lot but
 we want to spend more time there when possible.

An upcoming post from Ireland will focus on the second beautiful peninsula
 we visited - the Ring of Kerry.

Have you ever been across the sea to Ireland?


  1. It is just as I had imagined it would be! I am enjoying this so much Mary! Hope you are healing nicely!

  2. Oh Mary! Such stunningly beautiful photo's. Thanks so much for sharing.

  3. That island did look like a sleeping man. All beautiful.

  4. I have not been to Ireland, but your posts make me want to catch the next plane there. Your photos are gorgeous!!! I especially love the one that looks like you took the beach while riding along the road is stunning. And I can see the man on that island too. Oh how I would love to be sitting on one of those beaches this summer.

  5. Lovely Lady are still on the go! How I would love to visit Ireland! That's one place we have not been. Nice to see you looking so well! xoxo

  6. Hi Mary, Yes I have been to Ireland and I loved everything about it. We went for a horseback ride through the little hills of the Dingle area and down to the sea. It was beautiful and the people are just wonderful. Your info about the Star Wars filming is fascinating! I must tell my kids! Looking forward to your photos from Kerry too!

  7. I saw the word Dingle on Daylily's side bar and jumped here immediately. I visited Ireland last year and fell in love, took a few photos from the same place you did. How I loved Dingle and the Peninsula. Thanks for the Memory Lane trip.

    1. It was SO beautiful Pauline and I hope so much I can return again some day - more remaining to be viewed and adored!
      Thanks for stopping by - I so love your country too - have been twice and hope to return for another visit. Darn it, if only I was younger and richer, there are so many wonderful places to visit around this vast world!

      Mary -

  8. I have loved your photos of Ireland. I had the great fortune to visit a few years ago. It is my favorite place; I immediately felt a connection. Though I have always been told I am mostly Welsh, while visiting a cemetery, I found three of my ancestral names in the same plot area (lack of a better description). I am sure names crossover frequently and are common.

    I am glad to read you are on the mend. Take it easy, relax and enjoy some reading time. Hugs! Bonnie

    1. Thanks for the heads up on my soon to be healthy days ahead dear Bonnie. Doing OK and longing to get back to normal!

      Yes, isn't it easy to call beautiful Ireland 'my favorite place' - we so loved our recent time there. Hope to go back as there is much more of the stunning countryside to see, lovely people to converse with, music to tap the foot to, and. . . . . . well a thousand other great things only found on that emerald isle!

      Mary -

  9. Your photos of Ireland have me longing to visit, especially that lovely wide beach and those green hills. Just a week before we leave on our trip to the UK and France. Getting excited. But there are still about 40 of those pesky report card comments to write. I'm losing my focus.

  10. Hello Mary, hope you're doing well! Remember we met on the boat trip to the cliffs of Moher? It was lovely to meet you and I'm enjoying reading your blog

    1. Hi Caroline - I do remember you well and I'm thrilled to see you've been reading my blog! Bob and I just viewed your Amazing Race audition tape with your mom - what fun to learn so much about your interesting life/travels, and to see you enjoying so much together. Love that you are also musicians. Hopefully you, like us, enjoyed the remainder of your time in Ireland. We loved every minute and it turned out to be one of our most favorite trips ever!
      I can't find a way to communicate with you by e-mail, perhaps you can send me your address if you read this - which I hope you do. Hope your camera is still behaving and you are getting great shots wherever you are traveling now.

      Best wishes and enjoy the world - it truly is beautiful.
      Hugs - Mary

  11. I was just talking about "99"s with Alex two days ago and was wondering if they still had them! I was thinking though tit was maybe 99p which seemed too much for back then. NOw you;ve set me straight here. Thank you.

    Love all the photos and even the locale shots for Star WArs newest movie. Wow.


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