Thursday, May 28, 2015

Ireland Travels Part 1



Planning an overseas vacation is a small task which involves all sorts of gear and clothing to maximize enjoyment while on the road.
Get the tickets, plan the week traveling to several cities, plan hotels, get the right flights, get the right rental car, convert money to Euro.  We are doing ok in the conversion but the local "charges" banks make on you eliminate that edge.   Get the local AC adapter and then check the weather to see what works.  Ireland is well known for clouds and rain and it was likely that some time seeing the sites would involve getting wet.  Thankfully the Fujifilm X-T1 camera can handle it, and with the right clothing I would also have a good time wet or dry.  
I brought the XF10-24, XF16-55, XF55-200 and XF16.  Carried it all in my Tenba Shootout Actionpack 14L:
http://www.tenba.com/Products/Go-pro-14L-Actionpack.aspx
I also brought a MeFoto tripod for convenience:
http://www.mefoto.com

Flying from Newark to Shannon was easy on United with the food and movies providing a good distraction to the time in the air. Gotta love the free socks too. Arriving in Shannon around 7am on a Sunday was a very easy and quiet experience.  The airport seemed to be an open building where we just passed through without much interaction.  That's a joy.




 Next stop was off to see the sights in Adare.  One of the top award winners as one of Irelands "Tidy Towns".  The award is well earned as Adare is amazingly clean and charming.  A worthwhile stop.









 Many of the local roads we experienced in Ireland were not much different than this one.  Those seemingly friendly looking "walls" on the side of the road are rock walls covered in growth.  There is no brushing up on them!
 Taking a walk around the hotel property we stumble upon an old house from around 300 yrs ago.  Sort of a regular occurrence in Ireland as well as many parts of Europe.  We are just so young here!





Beginning to explore other areas like Bunratty Castle and Limerick, the sites were beginning to pile up and there was so much to see!









 I loved taking in all the different cultural norms.  In the USA we are certainly over-signed!  What does that mean?  Take a drive in your town and count all the street signs telling you what to do on your way.  In Ireland - either for lack of budget or lack of need or both - the country kind of says - here it is - don't be dumb - enjoy.
So I was elated and confused when the sign said parking ahead - and it was here on the water's edge.


  










Our sunny day adventure took us way out west on the Dingle Peninsula.  A wonderful area to explore with dramatic scenery as you see here.  Just look at the road I am driving up on the edge of the island with barely enough space for two.



Janet takes a jump with a selfie stick for some over the edge grab shots.

Click to enlarge.  A 3 frame pano stitched together.


I had a soft spot for this dramatic pass in the mountain area.



Here is a quick look at how easy it is to turn a simple photo into a more interesting one.  I set the camera to B&W mode with a Red color capture only and then the door really pops out.




Here you can see the XF16mm in action.  I think I may do a post on just that lens for the trip in a week or so.  So crisp.

This amazing tree was planted in 1645.  The one below - not above.  The base of this tree and scope of its branches is hard to depict in a photo - but it is massive.

Next day we headed up to the Rock of Cashel where an awesome castle on a mountain is sitting and has magnificent views of the valley.












Then later that day off to another castle and a bit of clouds setting in.









More amazing roads to experience.

Tidy Town of Adare at night.




The Adare Castle Manor at 11:30pm shot for about 35 seconds.



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