It's a lovely drive from Dublin to Killarney, especially onto the back roads where the new GPS leads us.
Our first stop is the Rock of Cashel or Cashel Castle, which is undergoing renovations.
The castle became a religous center about 1100 A.D. Like most castles the wooden parts were rotted away during a long period of neglect. We learn a new meaning for the term "corbels".
There are many fresh graves and tombstones on the grounds.
This smaller structure outside the castle walls was built by an Abott as a more defensible residence.
We stay about an hour and linger to watch a video that describes some of the history of Ireland. It details the reason for the numerous stone towers that dot the countryside.
Next we stop at Blarney castle and cilmb a tall and circilar stone stairway to reach the Blarney Stone.
The term "blarney" entered the English language when Queen Elizabeth I, frustrated with long negotiations with the castle's owner, said that his talk was full of meaningless and eloquent "blarney".
Mrs. Phred kisses the stone.
Taylor kisses it too. Brooke and I decide that the practice is probably unsanitary.
A view from atop the castle.
Inside the castle, it seems like a very cold and uncomfortable way to live.
The is an educational "poison" garden which features all manner of poison plants. Only about five people a year are killed by poisin plants in the USA, provided that you ignore the hundreds of thousands that die from plants used improperly like heroin and tobacco.
Another view of Blarney Castle.
Two workers are renovating the castle face.
This is our hotel in Killarney. It's name the "Old Wier Hotel" We have dinner at a pub just down the street. The kids have duck for the first time. The hotel features breakfast and good wifi. We learn that the Arbutus tree is commen in County Kerry. It's strawberry tree. Today we will drive the "Ring of Kerry" and hope for some sunshine.
The heavy summer rain has ruined many music festivals and flooded towns, villages and roads. Cork was badly flooded yesterday, but fortunately our GPS guided us around the flooded city.