07.10.2009 10 °C
Galway is sooo cute! Such a pretty, well made-up town. I'm staying at Barnacles Quay which is right in the middle of everything it's perfect. A little noisy, but awesome! I got into town yesterday at around 2:30, so by the time I got in and settled the day was almost over. I still managed to get out of my hostel and out to sightsee, despite everyone else wanting me to watch Wedding Crashers with them. Ok, if I wanted to watch an american movie at 3 in the afternoon in IRELAND I would have to be either dying or suuuuper sick or something like that. Like I came here to watch movies! Haha anyways, I guess I'm just on a different kind of trip than they are! Met a couple of really nice people right away at my Hostel: Katie from New York (who actually turned out to be a nut case lol), Harrison from California, and Marika from Alberta. But they were watching a movie so I headed out!
I walked down a pretty little boardwalk by the water and saw lots of guys fly fishing off the railing. I popped into St. Nicholas's Cathedral and it was nice and big and pretty, and some girls were signing what I'm assuming were gospel songs. They were so loud and, for lack of a better word, gospely? The accoustics were awesome, and there was some pretty stained glass, but I just wasn't feeling the church vibe. I mean, they were charging you money to light a candle,which is just a bit silly. But that's as far as I'll go with that one! Very cool, my first time in a cathedral over here so it was good.
I then walked through Eyre square and popped into some of the shops along there. The mall here is part of a really old building that they sort of threw a roof on and called a mall it's cool. I went into Dunnes and got some food that will hopefully last me the next three days, and then walked back to my hostel.
Last night was the last night of this Backpacker Pub Crawl that they're introducing to Galway. It's all over Europe, but it's the first time being in Galway so it was 5 euro to go, and you go to 4 pubs and 1 club at the end, and you get shots at each bar, the first being whiskey! Totally had to take a picture as I haven't had whiskey in almost 6 years after the incident that I'm sure most of you know about! I only had to buy two drinks because we were doing shots, which I only did two because I didn't want to be hung over for the Cliffs today, but I still had an awesome time!
We had a really nice kiwi tour guide who's on a year long world trip himself, got a little working bug in Ireland and decided to try out the pub crawl thing for a week. Next he's going to the Middle East, so I wished him luck with that! Met TONS of people on the pub crawl: Two really nice guys from Belgium, two girls from Victoria, Jenn and Kirsty, Andy, a really cool girl from Montreal, Alberta, and two guys and a girl from London, Ontario. Lots of Canadians! Also met a guy named Bob from New Jersey, and a guy from California named Patrick as well. We got a couple of group photos.
Got a really good sleep even though I banged my head like four times during the night because I'm THAT close to the ceiling! Haha feeling ok this morning though Headed off to the Cliffs of Moher bus tour today with Jenn and Kirsty, both from Victoria so we already had a lot in common. The bus ride out was about 2 hours, our tour guide was ok, tried a little too hard to be funny, but definitly full of information. He's just been doing tours too long I think! On the way to our first stop we saw a bunch of old ruined castles and churches. The people who own the castles today don't want to renevate them because as soon as they start to do that they have to pay taxes on them! Also we saw a bunch of churches without roofs because when Cromwell came in and invaded Ireland he didn't have a religion so he didn't want Ireland to have one either. He would take over these churches, murder the priests and monks, and burn the roofs off of them. How cruel!
Our first stop was the Ailwee caves in the Burren of Ireland. The caves were discovered when an old man chased his dog into a hole when the dog was chasing a rabbit. He ended up going 200 m into the mountains and discovering all these caves. He didn't tell anyone for almost 30 years! He finally did and then they made it into a tour. It was pretty neat. The straw things coming down from the ceiling are formed from the calcium in the water, and develop 1 cm every 50 years! Some of them were over 1000 years old! It was a short, but good tour.
All over the Burren were these really short walls built by hand in the 1800's during the potato famine. Men would get 1 penny for every metre of wall they built, all by hand, and with only stones - nothing to hold them together. There must have been miles and miles and miles of these walls it was a really desperate time.
Next we went on to the Cliffs of Moher. They were beautiful! Not much to say other than that they are Irelands number one tourist attraction, with over 2 million visitors every year, and I can see why! It was a rainy, misty, foggy day but it was still beautiful. Got lots of pictures!
There was a really big gift shop too where I heard the jewelry was cheaper than the other places in Galway and they were right! It took me like a half an hour to decide if I should get this necklace that I really, really liked and I finally did (thanks to advice of Jenn and Kirsty who helped me talk myself into it lol..) and I'm glad I did I love it!
On the way back we passed a few more things, one of which were these sheets of limestone that were cracked after the ice age 12,000 years ago! They only let tourists here 2 months out of the year because they want to preserve the sight.
Going out for some live music tonight I think. Galway has been really great so far, and I'm sure it will continue to be!