Our 4th day in Ireland was a busy one. We hoped to visit Blarney Castle, Birr Castle, the Rock of Cashel and Carbury Castle. Of course we had to start our day off right with a hearty breakfast.
After an amazing breakfast we hit the road and headed for Blarney Castle.
We where really surprised at how much there was to see at Blarney Castle. We kind of regretted not allowing a bit more time to explore the grounds around the castle.
The reference of having a silver tongue for kissing the stone comes from the Blarney Stone located at the top of Blarney Castle. Every year thousands of people climb to the top to kiss the stone.
Kissing the Blarney stone is said to bestow you with the gift of eloquence.
This gentleman is responsible for lowing each person down to kiss the stone.
From a distance we thought this was kids climber. However, on closer inspection we realized is was protecting something. The plant was part of the poison garden.
We noticed that in one of the windows someone had put in a knitted blanket as a covering.
Our next stop was the Rock of Cashel, formally known as St. Patrick’s Rock and also known as Cashel of the Kings. Located on a hill above town, it is immediately noticeable and very easy to get to.
Walking up the hill when then noticed this church in the distance.
Driving along we often saw ruins, tower houses or castles off in the distance.
Birr Castle is a very impressive 90 room castle situated on a 1200 acre walled estate in the Magical Midlands of Ireland. The castle is only open to the public on a limited basis throughout the summer as it still the family home of Lord & Lady Rosse.
This gate made me think of the book the Secret Garden.
The Birr Castle estate has beautiful formal gardens.
Stopped at this little shop on our way back to the car.
Left in ruin since the 17th century, Carbury can be found found just out of town on a hill (aka Fairy Hill). To get to it you have to park at the local church and let yourself in over the fence and walk through a farmers field. There is a warning posted on the fence reminding you to take care and watch out for any "aggressive" farm animals.
We found the sheep to be skittish at best, avoiding us at all costs.
The walls of the great house were very much intact. This could be due to the incredibly thick vines growing up all the walls.
Located at the bottom of the hill is a family plot with graves dating back as far as the 11th century.
With us being less then an hours drive from Dublin we set off. We managed to find an inn in the heart of downtown Dublin, putting everything we wanted to see over the next day within walking distance. However, after a long day of driving we decided the only thing we wanted to see was dinner and a couple pints.