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Traveling People

Hello, sheep lovers: Ireland is the place for ewe

By Ed Forry, June 4, 2012

By Judy Enright
Special to the BIR
The clerk in the upscale Connemara shop said, “Sheep sell. Items here with sheep on them fly out the door!”
She had seen me admiring a large display of ceramic mugs, coasters, magnets, cards, prints, and more – by Thomas Joseph, an artist in Co. Down, Northern Ireland. He has a lot of fun with the word “ewe” – using it in place of “you” (wish ewe were here, for instance) – and depicts sheep on surf boards, driving tractors, playing and doing other whimsical things that, of course, sheep don’t do. Read more

Gastronomically speaking, the Irish have the right stuff

By Anonymous, May 9, 2012

Let’s talk food – Irish food. In short, it’s great!

You may still be able to find a pub that serves dry, tasteless ham or cheese sandwiches on bland bread, but for the most part, food is fresh, locally sourced, and truly outstanding and not just in the high-end restaurants. Pubs have come into their own, too, and many serve fresh soups and stews, paninis, and other trendy sandwiches along with other pub fare. Read more

A castle for the night? Ireland has plenty to offer

By Anonymous, April 13, 2012

Irish castleIrish castle

Elegant castles and ruins are scattered across the Irish countryside and add an air of romance and mystery to this mystical island. It’s fun trying to imagine life in those feudal days and how castle dwellers coped without instant communication, grocery stores, or malls.

Some of these castles and tower houses have been restored, with many of the larger castles now serving as deluxe hotels, including Ashford, Kilkea, Dromoland, Kilronan, Abbeyglen, andf Ballynahinch. Read more

Addergoole Parish remembers a ‘very sad human story’

By Anonymous, March 5, 2012

14 from its pews boarded the Titanic, only 3 survived; Memorial Week is April 8-15


Catherine Bourke, Nora Fleming, Delia Mahon, Annie McGowan, John Bourke, Annie Kate Kelly, Pat Canavan, Delia McDermott, Mary Mangan, Kate McGowan, James Flynn, Bridget Donohue, Mary Bourke, and Mary Canavan.

The names don’t mean much to most of us but they bring tears to the eyes of many in the North Mayo parish of Addergoole. The Addergoole Fourteen, as the group is known, struck out from the hills and valleys around Nephin Mountain 100 years ago next month – some in jaunting carts, others on foot – and crossed the Windy Gap into Castlebar where they took the first of several trains to Queenstown (now Cobh.) There they settled into steerage (third class) on the RMS Titanic to laugh, chat, dance, and sing as they prepared for the long ride to America and their bright new lives. Read more

Why I rent the same house each year in magical Rosturk Woods

By Anonymous, February 9, 2012

By Judy Enright, Special to the BIR
Each traveler has definite likes and dislikes about what makes a trip special. Some are bound by time constraints and can only get away from their “real” lives for a short time; others enjoy spending more time to see as much of a destination as possible.
With this in mind, I wanted to share how much I love renting a house in Ireland and why. Read more

At New Year’s, looking back, looking forward at the things we love about the island of Ireland

By Anonymous, January 9, 2012

It's hard to believe that another year has sped past, leaving behind some good and some not-so-good memories, and that 2012 has now been launched. As the year turns, it's fun to remember all the things we love about Ireland, especially what we experienced during the previous year.

Here are a few 2011 favorites: Read more

Ireland offers plenty of help for roots-searchers

By Anonymous, December 5, 2011

by Judy Enright
Special to the BIR

Is it because this country is such a grand melting pot that so many of us are engaged in the search for our roots? There are, of course, a number of sensible reasons for learning about your past: ancient traditions that might be lost if you didn’t learn about them; or genetic medical conditions in the family that you should know about and watch for. Read more

There are photographers, and then there’s Tim Durham

By Anonymous, October 12, 2011

In this digital age, it seems that everyone who picks up a camera is instantly a “photographer.” Read more

Irish offer lots of help in choosing accommodations

By Staff, July 29, 2011

Fishing in Co. Galway. Photo by Judy EnrightFishing in Co. Galway. Photo by Judy EnrightBy Judy Enright
Special to the BIR

Some people say that carefully choosing accommodation in Ireland isn’t all that important because, after all, you just sleep in those places.

For a lot of travelers, that seems to be all too true. They just slog from one place to another without experiencing the history or flavor of the places they have visited.

But, fortunately, there are a number of organizations in Ireland that have set out to change all that. There is Ireland’s Blue Book and Manor House Hotels, The Great Fishing Houses of Ireland, Green Book Hotels, and many more. Some of the recommended properties appear in more than one book, too. Read more

Tips for travelers along the whiskey trail

By Anonymous, July 5, 2011

Casks of Jameson in the Midleton, Co. Cork, Distillery.Casks of Jameson in the Midleton, Co. Cork, Distillery.
By Judy Enright
Special to the BIR

Depending on the ages of your group, traveling the whiskey trail in Northern Ireland and the Republic is fun and a great learning experience, even if you aren’t a devoted whiskey drinker. Bushmills and Jameson are probably Ireland’s best-known whiskeys, but there are many others, and most distilleries offer excellent guided tours of their facilities. Read more