We decided to use Globus Tours for our trip to Ireland. Honestly, if I wouldn’t have found the deal to Ireland, we probably would have never thought to go to Ireland during Thanksgiving time. With it being our first trip to Ireland, Globus was really night one stop shop. They arranged all flights, airport transfers, accommodations, touring, driving, extra excursions and about half of our food for the trip. It was extremely reasonable in price and the deal could not be passed up. This left us relaxed and with no stress before the trip. Well OK, if you know me, you know there was some stress…before the trip. I also just got back from a trip from Oklahoma city on Friday 22 November and then headed out Saturday 23 November to go to Ireland. My biggest fear was that I was going to forget to pack something. I had my Ireland suitcase packed before I left for Oklahoma City, so as soon as I got home, I could move a pair of shoes and my makeup bag and I would be good to go. I didn’t want to be cold or wet, so I had to make sure I had plenty of layers and wet weather gear. All the while wondering what earrings to wear, I know, earrings?? Well I don’t like not feeling somewhat put together, and well earrings and mascara help me feel that way.
This was our first trip without any of the kids, so it was a very different vacation of sorts, but amazing. Don’t let them feel sorry for them though, as we have another vacation planned for December right before Christmas.
Our flight out of Atlanta was delayed by a little over an hour. We did get upgraded to first class though, so that was nice.
When we got to Toronto, we decided to have a snack and some wine. We ran to the restroom near our gate and they were on last call…so we almost missed that one just because we were not paying attention to the time. When we left Toronto we headed to London Heathrow, they had to power down the plane, which delayed us leaving Toronto as well…leaving us just 52 minutes from touchdown to take off in London. Needless to say we missed our connecting flight from London to Shannon.
Photo while heading into London. The clouds were so thick and low.Christmas tree in Heathrow airport.
They rebooked us on a later flight at 3:20 pm so we had 5 hours to burn in Heathrow. Thought about taking Uber somewhere but security was so slow, and we didn’t want to risk it. We did find some cozy reclining chairs (even have charging stations) after breakfast and window shopping near Gates B31-B49.
We were supposed to arrive in Shannon at 11:30 a.m., but instead arrived at around 5 p.m. We had our bags and went through customs in about 10 minutes. We met our Globus representative and had to wait for everyone else from this flight and we were headed to the hotel….finally!!
Day 1 November 24
We arrived at Clayton Hotel, Limerick at about 5:45 p.m. and dinner was scheduled for 6:30 p.m. with our tour group. I had the house white wine, bruschetta, chicken with Demi glacé and potatoes and vegetables. We had a sampling of 4 different desserts and Irish coffee after dinner (hubby drank both of ours…cause I don’t do coffee with whiskey or without 😉.
After dinner headed for a short walk and to get some water from the circle K (yes there was a circle K in limerick)
Here are some photos from around town…it was dark and we were on our own, so I’m am not too sure of what everything was, but will check out more on our tour no tomorrow.
Hotel Clayton, Limerick…right on the Shannon River.
Day 2 November 25
Limerick and West Coast Excursion
We drove around Limerick in the morning on our way out to the West Coast excursion along the Atlantic. We stopped to photograph King Johns Castle and some bridges on the Shannon River.
King John’s Castle
Bridge over the Shannon River in Limerick
As we traveled the Atlantic Coastline, we drove through some quaint towns and beautiful countryside. Then we stopped to visit the Dunguaire Castle and the bay.
Thatched roof houses across from Dunguaire Castle
We stopped at the Cliffs of Moher – 668 ft cliffs on Clare Coast, sadly it was very cloudy and the cliffs were in the clouds. There were quite photogenic birds there though. The cliffs proved how important it was to have waterproof shoes…was very glad my feet stayed dry.
As we traveled to Galway, here are some photos of countryside that we passed though.
We arrived in Galway, a seaside destination and were quite hungry for lunch. We ate fish and chips and checked out a few shops and a Christmas market. It was raining the majority of the time there, so we tried to hop in and out of shops and pubs…to stay dry. Another fond moment with my rain jacket, rain boots and umbrella. Three very important items to have in Ireland.
On the way back towards Limerick, we caught the first glimpse of sun for the day…an Irish sunset…photo taken from inside a moving tour bus…as were quite a few of the other photos from the day.
We stopped at Bunratty Castle for a Medieval Banquet. The gift shop was decorated with Christmas decor. A four course meal was served with unlimited wine followed by tea or coffee. This was an optional excursion on the tour. Most of our group attended, some however chose to go back to Limerick to enjoy the evening on their own.
We then arrived back at Clayton Hotel, Limerick, showered and tried to recap my day and hit the hay for an early morning. Suitcases had to be outside our room by 7 and headed out at 8 a.m. for a full day tomorrow.