Ireland Road Trip Day 3: Adare and The Cliffs of Moher

Out of all the must-see sights in Ireland recommended by blogs, guidebooks, and friends/family who have been to Ireland, the Cliffs of Moher ranked high on everyone’s list, and now Chris and I know why! After staying in Killarney for two nights, we hit the road early and made our way up the west coast toward Galway with a plan to spend the afternoon at the cliffs.

But first, we stopped in the sweetest village, Adare, on the way. Famous for its thatched-roof cottages built in the 1820s, friendly little Adare charmed my socks right off. Chris and I wandered the village, ate a leisurely lunch, and enjoyed a take-away bakery dessert while sitting in a beautiful park nearby. Our road trip might sound like a crazy whirlwind with a lot of mileage, but we had plenty of serene moments where we soaked in our surroundings. This was one of them.

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After our lovely time in Adare, we continued onto the Cliffs of Moher. I admit I didn’t know what to expect other than a long stretch of rocky walls along the ocean that I had seen in pictures. Photos simply do not do the dramatic coastline justice; it has to be experienced first-hand along with the crazy winds! I also didn’t realize you can walk the length of the cliffs on the Burren Way, and because we had such a beautiful day that’s exactly what we did.

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For most of the trail along the cliffs towards Doolin there are two paths – one is right along the ridge, and one is down low alongside a short wall (see photo below). We chose the perilous option for the views, although on a rainy, slippery day I might have opted for the protection of the wall! A sign warns visitors that this part of the cliffs are on private farmland and while you are allowed to walk there, the farmers are not liable for your fate. (Gulp.)

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It was so windy! This isn’t a good look for me.

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The one thing I did plan very specifically was the timing of our visit. I aimed to photograph the cliffs in the afternoon when the sun (if not behind clouds) would be shining into the side of the cliffs. The lighting was incredibly gorgeous while we were there (around 4-5pm). We absolutely lucked out with the weather and enjoyed sunshine for nearly two hours; it only started sprinkling just as we were leaving.

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I had also hoped to see The Burren on the same day as the Cliffs of Moher if the schedule allowed, and we did drive through the national park, but we were indeed short on time and didn’t get to see any of the attractions found deeper into the park. So The Burren goes onto the list for a future trip when we can give it a proper amount of time. The reasons to go back to Ireland are adding up!

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