Day 1 - Dublin to Donegal

Day 1:
The trip from Dublin (Celtic Rider) to Donegal was fairly uneventful. The first half was on multi lane roads with traffic in the 60mph range. The second half was mostly 2 lane roads and it was generally difficult to exceed 45mph. The roads followed paths made centuries ago and, as a result, were winding and hilly—no earth moving equipment was used to develop these roads—just paved over the path. Neither of us slept much on the flight over so we both struggled to stay awake and alert. We stopped for lunch after about an hour at Lakeside Manor Hotel. The hotel sits beside Lough Ramor and, even though the temperature was in the 60’s, there was a group of people reading to water ski. The food was buffet style, fairly tasty, but very heavy—turkey, gravy, stuffing, mashed potatoes etc. After lunch, we continued to Donegal, about a 2 hour ride. This was really a pretty and a fun drive—much of which was along multiple natural lakes.

We checked in at the Rossmore Manor, a bed and breakfast run by Jackie and Geoff. It is their home and is very nice and very clean. About midafternoon, Jackie brought over some delicious pound cake with apples that hit the spot.

For dinner, we decided to take a cab to the Harbor restaurant in down town Donegal. I had some of the best fish chowder (plenty of fish and lobster) I have had in some time—reminded me of some I used to get at Garibaldi’s in Charleston.

Earlier in the afternoon, Donegal’s soccer team won their game resulting in them making it to the quarter finals of the Irish soccer championship. There was a big ceremony on the town square to welcome the team home from their win. Josh and I attended and enjoyed the festive atmosphere accompanying the celebration. We also visited a Pub named Reels. The pub was packed. The owner and four or five other musicians positioned themselves at tables at the back of the room and played and sung a number of tunes. Truly old Farts having a good time—they could sing and play well. We had a couple of pints and left them singing and playing.