Castles and Cliffs and County Antrim: Oh, my!
After spending a wonderful evening with Irishman running around County Antrim, we decided to meet up early the next morning in the centre (see! I can spell British-English) of Bushmills to grab a coffee before I hopped a bus and train for Armagh. As we sat down chatting inside an old bank vault, Irishman decided the idea of me trying to make bus and train connections during Easter Monday was ill-advised. Instead, I got an even BETTER tour of Ireland!
So yes, I was a tourist. I have zero shame in admitting this. I’ll never understand bloggers or people who roll around foreign countries they’ve never been to and refuse to admit they were tourists. The only thing that kept me from being one of the ones easily mocked by the locals is the fact that I absolutely refuse to wear a fanny pack. Will not*.
In my stint as a tourist with a local guide in Irishman, I was swept from the hotel and we sped off to see the ruins of Dunluce Castle, made our way over to the eccentric Earl-Bishop’s joint (Downhills Demesne) and Mussenden Temple, up to Gortmore Viewing Point (also called Bishop’s Overlook), and 60-some miles on down to my hotel in Armagh.
That drive involved one of the most educational and insightful conversations I’d had in years. Rare is the person that can have a discussion that in many circles would be deemed “touchy”, “lop-sided”, “political”. I was free to ask about “The Troubles”, the viewpoints, the history, etc. Everything was on the table.
As we drove through small towns you could easily see who the Unionists were and who the Republicans were. We even drove through a town during a memorial ceremony marking the 1916 Easter Rising. Eye opening. Do your research and draw your own conclusions.
With that final thought, the photos are below!
Dunluce Castle, Bushmills, Northern Ireland:
Downhill Demesne, Castlerock, Northern Ireland
Gortmore Viewing Point/Bishop’s Overlook, Castlerock, Northern Ireland
*There is, of course, a price for everything. If you offered me a disgusting amount of money to strap on a fanny pack and run around Disney Land screaming, “I’m an Oscar Meyer Weiner”**, I’ll do it.
**Anyone who’s watched Demolition Man will get that reference.