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MONTEREY LIFE

Ireland by Water: 3 Top Spots

Fri, Mar 13, 2015 at 9:20AM

It’s almost Saint Patrick’s Day! Whether you’re planning a party of your own or are searching for a place to celebrate, here is a way for you to pass some time before the 17th: we’re taking a trip to Ireland to look at some of the world’s most breathtaking waterscapes!

Our virtual tour starts in Northeast Ireland, at the World Heritage Site Giant’s Causeway. This area is home to around 40,000 interlocking basalt columns, some nearly forty feet high that form steps into the waters of the North Channel. The columns, remnants of an ancient volcanic eruption, form an impressive sight on their own… but it’s the view of the adjacent ocean that really makes this site spectacular. Visitors can hike up to the clifftop formed by the columns to take in the beautiful, expansive view of the ocean in a quiet, natural setting.

Incidentally, legend says that Giant’s Causeway is what remains of a causeway built by Irish giant Fionn mac Cumhaill.

When you head to Ireland’s West Coast, you’re in for another seaside treasure, Achill Island. With a population of about 2700, Achill Island isn’t quite untouched… but its coastal cliffs and ocean views might make you forget that. The steep cliffs of Croaghaun are the third-highest in Europe and are found on the western side of Achill Island; also on this side is Keem Bay, a sheltered bay surrounded by cliffs like Moytoge Head, which offer breathtaking views of the sparkling blue water below. Keel Beach offers an outlet for surfers, snorkelers and water lovers thanks to its pristine, seemingly untouched character.

Finally, further south, we have the Lakes of Killarney, a trio of lakes located in County Kerry, a region particularly well-known for its rolling, grassy hills. The Lakes of Killarney-- Lough Leane, Muckross Lake or Middle Lake, and Upper Lake—each offer their own dose of character, whether you’re looking for a lakeside view or prefer a bird’s eye view from a neighboring mountain, like Torc or Purple Mountain. Visitors can also head to Ladies View, a viewing spot on the road between Killarney and Kenmare, which offers a spectacular look at the lakes and surrounding Black Valley.

  • Killarney Lake
  • Cliffs of Moher
  • Achill Island
  • Giant's Causeway

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