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#1 Liza

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Posted 04 August 2005 - 10:54 AM

We're taking young Jack to see Daddy's home, and to meet his grandparents in Mayo. Will probably spend a few days in Dublin at the end of the trip, with day trips from Mayo to Ackell and other points west-ish.
Any recs, considering we'll have a two-year old with us?
“And another thing. You don't have to "move on" either. Not until you're ready. People say, Oh, you should be grateful. They say, Oh, it's time for you to move on. I'm like, What are you, a cop with a nightstick? I'll move on when I'm done playing the blues on my harmonica, thank you very much.

Really, people will tell you all kinds of garbage. Don't believe it.

You don't have to move on until you're ready.”

#2 Wilfrid1

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Posted 04 August 2005 - 02:03 PM

My Irish experience is confined to the south, taking in such highlights as Kinsale, Cork, and Tralee. Was heading for Dublin, but never made it. Do be careful how much you drink.

I think you're going to be further north and west, and I look forward to reading about it.
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#3 Daisy

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Posted 04 August 2005 - 03:41 PM

I ate at a very nice little place in Dublin called the Mermaid Cafe. It is well-known and quite popular but I think if you went early it could be a good place to take a two year old. It had good food but was low-key and casual.
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#4 Rail Paul

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Posted 04 August 2005 - 04:23 PM

In Galway, this might be of interest:

Discovery Center

There's an oyster festival upcoming...

“Jazz musicians just get better and better as the years go by. I think chefs are the same way. You know who you are.”

 

...Jonathan Waxman


#5 Tuckerman

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Posted 04 August 2005 - 08:04 PM

Do be careful how much you drink.

Sweet advice, Wilf.

But why :o

#6 Liza

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Posted 05 August 2005 - 11:37 AM

Thanks, RP, but that museum has closed.

From their website:
"It is with much sadness and regret that the Board of the National Children's Discovery Museum announced the closure of the Museum".

:o
“And another thing. You don't have to "move on" either. Not until you're ready. People say, Oh, you should be grateful. They say, Oh, it's time for you to move on. I'm like, What are you, a cop with a nightstick? I'll move on when I'm done playing the blues on my harmonica, thank you very much.

Really, people will tell you all kinds of garbage. Don't believe it.

You don't have to move on until you're ready.”

#7 Wilfrid1

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Posted 05 August 2005 - 02:16 PM

Do be careful how much you drink.

Sweet advice, Wilf.

But why :o

The previous sentence provides the context. :P
Elect-a-lujah

***Every Monday***At the Sign of the Pink Pig.

If the author could go around the place hitting random readers with a rubber hammer, the Pink Pig would still be worth a visit.

#8 Blondie

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Posted 05 August 2005 - 02:24 PM

I’m generally reluctant to recommend specific restaurants in Dublin since my experiences are several years old, but the Mermaid Café seems a good bet. I started going the year it opened and, based on recent reports, it has maintained a remarkable level of consistency. My best advice is to buy one of the Bridgestone Restaurant Guides. I relied on them the years I lived there, and they never let me down.

Our basic style of touring was to drive around, stopping as we came across anything that looked interesting, or detouring to see specific sites that my historian boyfriend deemed worthy. We covered virtually the entire island (which my bf had never done growing up there), but I can’t recall any child-specific places in the north west. Sorry :o If there any family-friendly activities around, they’ll likely be found in Galway. For me, just the views from the coastal roads was enough to put me in a blissed-out state. Everything else was the icing on the cake.

I’m sure your hubby knows a lot more than I do about the area, but here is my take:

Achill Island is beautiful, especially if the weather is fine. We drove most of the island in a day. I remember eating at a café/restaurant around Dugort, but can’t recall the food. Make sure you take at least part of the Atlantic Drive.

The deserted famine village at Sleivemore may seem like a waste of time, but walk up the hill and stand among the ruined cottages and abandoned potato beds (you can still see the rows). Imagining the dozens of houses bustling with activity and knowing the outcome, it’s quite moving.

There’s a tower house at Kildavent that is closely associated with Granuaile (aka Grace O’Malley), the 16th century pirate queen. I don’t think you can enter the castle, but it is has a very well maintained exterior. I never got to Clare Island, her home base, but seeing Kildavent was enough to spur my interest in Granuaile, easily the most intriguing Irish female historical figure.

Keem Bay, a lovely strand surrounded by steep hills, is spectacular, although I seem to remember the drive along the clifftop being a bit hair-raising. We climbed the hill behind the beach to look out over the massive sea cliffs. Only recommended if you have a head for heights. I don’t.

Other recs: visit Westport and take a drive over to gawk at Croagh Patrick (if the baby isn’t with you, it’s worth the climb for the views), visit Ceide Fields, drive around Connemara, have lunch in Clifden, take a day trip to Inishmore. If you get up to Donegal and want a beach, skip Bundoran and head a bit further north to Ballyshannon. Get a good look at Yeats’ Benbulben and Drumcliff church on the way.
BlondieNY.com

#9 yvonne johnson

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Posted 14 August 2005 - 09:01 PM

I asked an Irish chum of ours and here are his recommendations. I see he concurs with Blondie on Mermaid.

"Very good places to eat (L’Ecrivain, Guibaud’s and Thorntons are not very child friendly--but they could try L’Ecrivain).
Lots of good casual eating
- Few places on Dawson Street – Fitzgeralds
- Mermaid on Dame St
- Variety of places down Temple Bar (quite touristy)
- Mario’s in Sandymount
- Kavanagh’s in Glasthule – very good fish (near Dalkey)
- Mao;s in Dun Laoghaire
- Dali’s in Blackrock

Further west it will be more relaxed – worth getting Georgina Campbell’s Guide."
It was not a new dish, as I recognised my tooth marks. Wilfrid

#10 tanabutler

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Posted 15 August 2005 - 12:09 AM

Liza, my friend Katharine is in her summer place in West Cork right now...I asked her (quoting you directly) and she said:

Ireland is a country that loves chldren, so they are
going to be just fine. I don't know Mayo and Achill
especially. For us, just going on walks, petting a
donkey, talkng with people, messing at a beach --
those thngs were what it was to be here, and the
weather is fabulous this summer. Picking blackberries.
Picking winkles off the rocks, gathering sea spinach
at low tide. Foraging, basically, iss what we did with
our kids. If it's food they are after they should just
come down to West Cork for all the best of it.
Seriously.


She had just yesterday written me to tell me about the farmers market there (and all this stuff is going straight onto my blog):

Ireland is fabulous.

Local fish every day -- whatever comes in on the
trawlers - John Dory, plaice, hake, cod, incredible
prawns this year.

Tomorrow is the farmers market -- cheeses, smoked
fish, jams, chutneys....paradise, basically.

SO sunny and hot, too, almost weirdly so this summer --
Costa Del Cork!


and then:

No picture taking capabilities, sorry about that.

Gubbeen is the best of the best, for both cheese and
meat, see explanation and history for how Jaina began
with the cheese and then Fingal (very cute by the way,
is Fingal) came in with the pigmeat products. It is
the most outstanding sausage and bacon in all of
Ireland, I think.

http://www.gubbeen.com/

They are in the Skibbereen farmers market on Saturday
mornings

Also in the Skibbereen farmers market can be found
Connie Burns, who sells his organic potatoes. Connie
is a poetic farmer, who writes in Gaelic for the hell
of it, who incidentally has won more contests and
prizes than anyone else I know, from the ordinary
raffle prizes like picnic hampers to a Friesan bull to
a trip to Spain. He fills in every possible
competition on the back of a box of cereal or
whatever, and he has great skill and also tremendous
luck.


And look: Irish Farmers Markets!

I envy you. Have a glorious time.

#11 Gary Soup

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Posted 15 August 2005 - 03:35 AM

I recommend you take James Joyce's Ulysses to read on the plane. Concentrate on the sections about Leopold Bloom, a real foodie. If you're traveling light, there's a free electronic version. I have it on my PDA :o

What is home without Plumtree's Potted Meat? Incomplete. With it, an abode of bliss.

I envy you. Are you flying on Aer Lingus? The very name excites me somehow.

#12 tanabutler

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Posted 15 August 2005 - 05:12 AM

Modified. See below.

#13 tanabutler

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Posted 15 August 2005 - 05:13 AM

I love God's green earth.

#14 Behemoth

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Posted 15 August 2005 - 05:23 AM

I really love this place:

Chester Beatty Library

One of the finest collections of Islamic, Asian and Early Christian manuscripts, paintings, religious and cultural artifacts in the world. Great setting, and the exhibitions change fairly often because they have so much stuff in their archives.

Really blew me away.

edited to add: No idea about good food. We were staying with very nice hosts but as near as I can tell they basically live on gummy bears and white bread.
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#15 Rail Paul

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Posted 16 August 2005 - 03:55 PM

Since this thread is now in the "elsewhere in Europe" forum, I trimmed a few posts which now lack relevancy to the topic and removed those which might be considered political.

“Jazz musicians just get better and better as the years go by. I think chefs are the same way. You know who you are.”

 

...Jonathan Waxman