My latest party arrived in Galway yesterday after spending a couple of days in Dublin. I collected them this morning at the Park House Hotel in the city centre and they were all in great form and ready to go.
Pat and Gene celebrate their 45th wedding anniversary on the 12th of Oct, and Gene commented how it was a long time since he stood in front of an altar like this. The rose window at the rear of the church is really beautiful, as is all the wonderful marble throughout the cathedral.
Our weather today was disappointing after so much lovely weather lately. This did not seem to bother these two lovely ladies as they posed in the grounds of the world renowned Ashford Castle in Cong County Mayo.
Some local guy had to come along and spoil the picture.
Here we have, from the left, Don, Gene, and an Irish wolfhound, Shirley and Pat outside the main entrance to the castle.
My new friends, relaxing in one of the lounges inside the castle. This famous castle has a great history, dating right back hundreds of years to the time of the ferocious O'Flaherty Clan, to the Norman family of the Joyce's, the De Burgo family, another Norman family, and even the Guinness family in later years.The crest on the fireplace in the background is actually the crest of the Guinness family.
Another lovely picture of my friends in one the the many fantastic rooms in Ashford.
Is there anybody who has not heard of that old movie "The Quiet Man" , which starred John Wayne and Maureen O'Hara? This weekend, this wonderful bronze statue of the famous couple was unveiled in the centre of the village of Cong beside Ashford Castle to commemorate the great movie.
The rain was not bothering this guy as he lay by the roadside at Leenane. The water in the background is the fjord at Killiary harbour, Europes most westerly fjord.
We stopped off in the town of Clifden for a snack break in Walshe's Bakery and restaurant, where we enjoyed a really nice light meal. I can never manage to pass this tempting display of delicious pastries in the picture above without making a purchase. Once again i managed to smuggle a couple of these treats away with me as we began our journey back to the lovely town of Kinvara where we are staying this evening.
The picture above shows the Spanish Arch, a gateway in the old wall that surrounded Galway City. This is one of the very few remaining bits of what was once a wall that completely enclosed this old Anglo Norman. town, known as the city of the Tribes.
I think that despite the weather we made a great start to our tour of the West of Ireland today and if my party enjoyed themselves as much as i did, then they had a good day. They were great company, and i am looking forward to the next few days when i will be taking them to many wonderful places on our western seaboard.
Follow along, and enjoy.