Ireland 2003: a Cycling Honeymoon

Kara and I married on June 21, 2003. Two months later we traveled to Ireland for three weeks and explored the country by bicycle. It was the obvious choice for our honeymoon: Kara is of mostly Irish descent and has happy memories of childhood visits, and I had wanted to tour Ireland for a long time. Ireland is nearly ideal for bicycle touring: beautiful scenery, little traffic, friendly people, and never too many miles to the next campsite or B&B. In the summer, the weather is reasonably good. Kara had never done a long distance cycling tour, so this trip provided a gentle introduction.

We landed in Dublin, cycled to the train station, and took the train to Cork. From there, we cycled south to the coast at Kinsale, and then more or less hugged the western shore for over 800 miles, all the way to County Antrim in Northern Ireland. We camped, stayed in youth hostels, and treated ourselves to bed&breakfasts. Occasionally we took a ferry to explore nearby islands, including the Blaskets and the Aran Islands.

It was a beautiful trip, and it's hard to pick our favorite day. We loved Ballaghbeama Gap and the Dingle Peninsula in County Kerry, the Burren in County Clare, the wild landscape of Connemara, and the Slieve League cliffs in Donegal. Probably my most distinctive memory of Ireland is Glebe House, the late painter Derek Hill's beautiful and unique home, now a museum.

You can look at the entire photo album if you wish.