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Ireland and Northern Ireland

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Ireland and Northern Ireland

I'm looking for a friendly, sociable person (M/F age 35+) with a light sense of humor, flexibility and a love of good conversation to join me for a four-week trip in two of the most hospitable and ruggedly beautiful countries in Europe.

June and July of 2022.  Flying into and out of Shannon in Co. Clare, then biking through Galway, Mayo, Sligo, Donegal, Derry, Antrim, Cork and Kerry.  Overnights in B&Bs.  40-60 miles a day.  Dinners in restaurants and pubs.  Lively traditional music sessions at night. 

We'll bike the magnificent Connemara loop and remote Dingle Peninsula, hike Croagh Patrick, climb Moll's Gap, Connor Pass, Macgillycuddy's Reeks and the gentle side of Glengesh Pass, wobble on the Carrick-a-Rede Rope Bridge and the Giant's Causeway, visit Belfast and Dublin and enjoy an extensive network of mostly small, quiet back roads.  Ferries to the Aran Islands, Skellig Michael and Inishturk, plus three short train rides to cover less interesting territory.

Ireland's fickle weather, gray skies and daytime highs of around 60° F mitigated by the beautiful scenery, exceptionally friendly people, pre-historic sites and requisite pastry, tea and hot soup stops along the way.

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Hi David,

Hi David,

I might be able to join you for a while. We'll see closer to the time. I live about 30km from Shannon airport. You are welcome to stay as well. I cycle a lot in and around Co. Clare and last year I cycled the Wild Atlantic Way.

Hendrik

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Hendrik,

Hendrik,

Thank you for your interest.  Where exactly in Clare do you live?  I know Ireland quite well.

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Hi David,

Hi David,

 

I am between Ennis and Gort.

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Hendriik,

Hendriik,

Thanks.  I know that area well.  Stay tuned as my trip plans develop, Covid dependent. 

Reuters reported the other day that Ireland is planning (the operative owrd) to open for tourism, including from Americans, on July 19. What's the situation actually like there now with B&Bs, pubs and restaurants?   

 

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Hi David,

Hi David,

Pubs and restaurants are opening for guests outside next week. I believe BnBs/hotels as well. I am looking forward to it. It is a terrible sight passing the locked up pubs wondering if they will ever open again. A lot of country pubs might stay closed. It was very sad to see how the land of a 1000 welcomes changed to xenophobia.

 

Hendrik

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Hendrik,

Hendrik,

Glad to hear that those enterprises are on the cusp of re-opening.  But it would indeed be sad if many rural pubs can't stay in business.

Xenophobia - and not the virus?

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Hendrik,

Hendrik,

What's the the Covid situation like now?  Are most B&Bs and pubs open for business this summer or are they holding off on reopening?  I'm still hopeful of returning in 2022, but any trip across the puddle is a wholly health and safety matter.

Slainte!

David

 

 

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Hi David,

Hi David,

I think restaurants and pubs have opened this week inside for vaccinated people. The rest have to stay outside. I have not been out this week to experience it. The summer has been good and Ireland has been transformed. There are many nice places to sit outside that look really well. Our local here in Ballinruan is still kinda closed but Whelans in Shanaglish is open.

Hendrik

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Hendrik,

Hendrik,

That sounds more promising than here, where mask mandates are being put back into place in various states and indoor establishments because of the virus' delta variant and folks who refuse to get vaccinated.  It'll be many more months before we'll have a better idea of where this is headed in the long run - or not.   

Are Ballinruan and Shanaglish two local villages or something else?  They're not shown on my Michelin map.