Waterford, Cobh, Cork, Kinsale
04.11.2014 - 05.11.2014
It's been a very busy two days. The weather has been sunny every day and avéraging in the 50's. We started out yesterday with a walking tour of Waterford. It was founded by Vikings in 914. Many believe the city got it's name from the famous Waterford Crystal. The name Waterford actually derived from the Viking days. Waterford means "safe harbour". The original Waterford Crystal factory closed several years ago. You can go to the " House of Crystal " visitors center to learn about the crystal and purchase pieces from a large selection.
Next it was on to the Garryvoe Hotel for a light lunch and inspection. Their version of light lunch was fish, lamb shanks, potatoes, vegetables, salads, breads and deserts. The Garryvoe is located across from a five mile sandy beach and across the way is Ballycotten lighthouse. It is the only black lighthouse in Ireland. The Garryvoe has a fabulous pool with a side add-on Olympic lane. After our lunch and inspection we continued to the famous town of Cobh. Many know this town for the last port of call of the Titanic. The Cobh Heritage Center inside the old train station, tells the story of the Irish Immigrants during the Potato Famine. A statue in front of the center is of Annie Moore, the first Irish Immigrant to arrive at Ellis Island. In Cobh you can see the White Star building, (company that owned Titanic). You can also tour the St Coleman's Cathedral where all immigrants took communion before they boarded the vessels for their voyage to America. Cobh is also historic for the sinking of the Lusitania in 1915 out in the harbor. A monument stands in the town to commemorate the Lusitania's plight.
Our hotel for the night was the Hayfield Manor. What a magnificent place. Family run you can tell the special touches and detail. Our motor coach was greeted by the concierge wearing top hat and tails. He greeted us with a song. Dinner was superb. I had a melt in your mouth petite steak.
Today we hated to leave the delightful Hayfield Manor but it was time to move on to Cork. We spent a little over an hour at the English Market in Cork. It was unbelievable the amount of fresh seafood. The fish monger said it is all sold every day. Beautiful fresh vegetables and fruit, handmade chocolates, sumptuous baked goods, the market seemed endless. I could imagine myself living in Cork and going to the market every day to pick out what I would have for dinner.
After Cork it was a short distance to Kinsale. An old fishing village. We had lunch at the Trident Hotel with a view of the bay. You clearly new you were in a fishing village when we received seafood chowder and fresh seafood platter. Oyster, mussels, shrimp, salmon and makerel. After lunch we headed for the town Killarney where we will spend two nights at the Killarney Royal hotel. Once again we were given too much food. I skipped the appetizer, but my chicken stir fry was enough for two people, plus the Irish Cream Mousse for dessert.