Archive for category travel
We stopped at Dingle town for lunch at a cozy restaurant and had ‘Dingle’ food that turned out to be just fried prawns and chips. At least it was pretty inside.
And the dessert was quite delicious:
We walked around town which was very small:
And bought some souvenirs:
Our last stop was to see the lakes of Killarney:
After we got back, we went to look for a battery again. We tried a far away outlet and scoured the city before we ended up back at the photography shop that was closed earlier. The amazing thing was that they had my battery! But for 50 euros, my pictures tomorrow have to be amazing.
I woke up today anxious to find a battery for my camera because in my rush to leave yesterday I forgot it with the charger . Janice and I spent the morning running around Killarney asking at camera shops, but I didn’t expect anyone to carry it. The last shop, which advertised wedding photograghy, was closed so we went to browse in gift shops instead. The shop keeper was a very nice old lady who called us “friend” in a sweet voice and gave us a parting gift when we left . People here are so nice!
Our hostel arranged a tour of Dingle Peninsula for us and at 10:15 a van came by to pick us up. I was very sad because I wouldn’t have a DSLR to take photos of one of the most beautiful places in the world, as I’ve been told.
The day started out cold, wet and windy. Our bus full of Americans seemed quite subdued but I sat at the front and told jokes to cheer them up.. and annoy Janice who thinks my jokes are childish. The bus driver was a very nice old man who spoke with an accent that was hard for me to decipher.
But he let me ride in the very front when I wasn’t driving:
I look wet because we just came in from seeing Inch Beach in the pouring rain. There was a very cute dog there and a not very good looking beach so I won’t include a picture of it here.
We made a few stops along the way but I really enjoyed relaxing on the bus watching the cows, sheep, and very very green hills along the way. I had to take pictures with my phone because I didn’t have a working camera
Dingle peninsula had mostly cliffs punctuated by short stretches of beach.
It was very windy.
Off to watch ManU v Barcelona!
It’s been a while since I posted because I’ve been busy enjoying life outside of studying and traveling around continental Europe. Now I’m in Ireland!
Today was very busy because I had to do projects for engineering and attend a supervision for my last exam in modern societies, which I should be studying now.. Our adventure started at 4 pm when Janice and I caught a taxi to the Cambridge train station, then a train to Stansted Airport, then a flight to Kerry, Ireland.
As the plane descended, I looked out the window and saw how incredibly green Ireland is. Lush green fields stretched out uninterrupted in all directions, with cows grazing lazily in patches by the rolling hills. Windmills also dotted the landscape, but beyond that there was little sign of civilization.
At the airport, I went through the smallest border control I’ve yet encountered, and the police smiled at me when he stamped my passport with a GREEN stamp . We walked to the train station which was 20 minutes away, passing signs of campaign advertising for very Irish named politicians like O’ Keeffe and Kelly. Unfortunately they reprsented the Fail party..
The train station was a modest grey building that looked eerily abandoned as we approached it. After circling a few times and knocking to no answer, we noticed spider webs covering the doors. I was beginning to feel that there was no civilization left in this place.
We decided to go ask at the bar across the street, which I found initially intimidating because I only saw two beefy guys drinking. But with Janice by my side I felt braver . We went in. According to the bartender (who was very nice!) the train station only opens right before a train arrives. So we ordered some soup and dessert and sat down to wait. It was very nice and bright, even at 9 pm.
We went back to the train station after eating to find the station still locked. We were lucky that it was still bright out, but as it neared the time for the train to arrive with no sign of anyone else around, I was afraid we would be stuck in the middle of nowhere for the night.
But a train rolled in at 9:29 according to schedule, a short three car train that looked completely empty. We ran over to the conductor and found that this was indeed the train we were waiting for.. but what about tickets? He was nice and said we were ok – free ride to Killarney!
The train was very nice inside – clean, bright and spacious, with a power outlet at every seat! Unheard of in the UK.
We arrived at Killarney shortly and walked to our hostel, right next to Killarney National Park, which we are going to visit. Tomorrow we’ll take a tour of the Dingle Peninsula!
The end. Good night!
I spent the last few days in Venice, Italy. Everyone else was busy studying so I went by myself .
At first I had trouble finding my way because Google maps is a couple years old in that region and doesn’t show a new fourth bridge crossing the Grand Canal in front of the Piazzale Roma (nor does live maps), FYI. This bridge is gorgeous and modern unlike the other ones:
The next day, I decided to go to two of the islands near Venice, on the recommendation of some people I met at the hostel – Murano, which is famous for making beautiful glass and Burano, which has colorful houses.
It’s really easy to get around Venice on vaporetto, the water buses. I spent hours riding around the island and along the Grand Canal after I got tired of walking. Here’s a vaporetto next to Rialto bridge:
I later moved to a hotel closer to Piazza San Marco (St. Mark’s Square) because it’s the center of Venice and I thought it would be more convenient. It was nice to be 2 minutes from the square but the room was scary; I found this one night when I got back:
I called the guy at the front desk to help me and he killed it by smearing it onto the floor. He only took the remains away when I asked, but left the majority of the legs on the carpet (they’re probably still there so don’t stay at Hotel Astoria if you ever visit Venice). Also, unlike the hostel I first stayed at (Absolut Venice, near the train station), no one cooked me dinner and breakfast, or made delicious espresso in the morning. And no free Wifi .
I spent as much time as I could not in the room.
St. Mark’s Square was beautiful, surrounded by a bell tower, St. Mark’s Basilica, the Doge’s Palace, and the sea.
Inside the Basilica, which is a mix of European and Middle Eastern architecture, were beautiful golden mosaics:
The Doge’s Palace was even more opulent with ceilings and walls covered in paintings, including the largest oil painting in the world – Tintoretto’s Paradise:
I liked to make them fly away. The most effective way isn’t to chase them, but to throw something over them, like my scarf. Unfortunately, I couldn’t take pictures of them flying away because I was throwing stuff into the air.
More pictures here.