Monday, June 1, 2015

3 Days in Dingle


After leaving Dublin (read the post here), my family and I drove across the country to Dingle, the (arguably) Western most point of Europe/Ireland. Dingle was the place I was most excited to visit, and it definitely did not disappoint.


FOOD

Murphy's Ice Cream - Holy amazeballs, batman.  We had Murphy's ice cream every day we were in Dingle, and could have probably done it more than once a day if pushed.  It's the most incredible stuff, ever.  Pay extra for the magic chocolate - it's incredible, and pairs beautifully with the sea salt or brown bread.  Personally, the gin was too weird for me, but my mom loved it.

Out of the Blue - The seafood is so fresh, they make a different menu every day to accomodate whatever came off the boat, and if there's a storm, they don't open. Everyone in my family ordered something different, and everyone walked away thrilled.  It's expensive, but worth the splurge. Call ahead - the place is teeny.

Pubs - We spent a LOT of time in pubs, for food and for fun.  Each time we stopped in, the food was great.  A friend had recommended the tomato soup as a staple good food in Ireland, and it didn't disappoint.  Generally, the food was reliable, quick and delicious.

Waterside Restaurant and Cafe - We had a funny wait situation with Waterside, and ended up getting seated about 30 minutes after they had said that we would, which was a bummer, but not the staff's fault. The food was good, but not as good as Out of the Blue.  I had Eton Mess for dessert, which was delicious, but I think the seafood options were better other places.


ATTRACTIONS

Slea Head Loop - We took a full day to drive the Loop, which was spectacular.  We really lucked out weather-wise, and my ever-patient father did a great job managing the driving. Following the Rick Steves guide, we stopped a lot.  I would absolutely recommend the scenic overlooks and the beaches, but maybe skip the beehive huts.  3 euros to walk up a hill and look at some huts is pretty steep, unless your a photography/anthropology buff (me!).

Connor Pass - As we left Dingle, we took the Connor Pass drive and stopped at the parking lot in the middle of the pass, where you have spectacular views of Dingle, and the other side of the mountains.  In a land of stunning scenery, this might have been the top spot.

Music Scene - Dingle is famous for staying true to it's musical roots. Every night, there are tons of live musicians playing all sorts of different stuff.  My dad and brother were especially thrilled with this aspect of Dingle, and my mother and I were delighted to find that they serve tea in pubs.

Dingle Distillery - One of my family's favorite past-times are gin and tonics, so visiting the gin distillery makes sense... They're primary focus is actually whiskey, but it's a really long process (3+ years), so they're making vodka and gin in the meantime.  The tour was brief, but informative and our guide was really fun. After the tour, everyone got healthy sized gin and tonics, plus refills.  If gin is your thing, don't miss the distillery, which is an easy walk outside of town.


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