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Post Info TOPIC: Our trip report delayed...Part 3

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Our trip report delayed...Part 3

Ive have figured that the Burren can be considered as 2 different places.  The inland section called the Burren National Park and also the Atlantic Burren Scenic Park.  As we used Micheles trip map plan, it is just amazing as we drove along this road with Atlantic on left and the craggy Burren small mountain range on the right.  No trees to block out anything.  Further along were houses and its land each segmented by 3 foot high stone walls.  Mile after mile of stone walls claiming their own piece of land. 


We continued toward Ballyvaughan where a little bit of traffic was forming in Ballyvaughan, as it is Sat. morning Farmers Market.  Began to also notice the Tour buses beginning to get on the road.  They can look quite large on these narrow roads.  We also drove through Kinvarra so as to eventually get onto N18 North heading toward Tuam.  N18 is a good wide road.  We drove around east of Galway as we did not want to venture into Galway on this trip.  Before Tuam we picked up R333, another narrow road which travels west to Headford. 


On this road, some traffic was forming where at a certain area were signs for parking.  We pulled over to ask one of the traffic vested guys whats up.  He informed us that it is sheep sheering contest day.  Mary and look at each other and think, nah, lets keep going as the day is getting warm.  We finally got into a busy intersection in Headford, and figuring its time for lunch, we parked on the street.  We went inside a convenience/petro station and got some food and drink for lunch.  The dollar is getting beat up against the Euro.  Figure well keep lunch cheap.  After we finished, I asked about Ross Abbey Friary.  She told us its about 5 kilometers down the road. (further west on R333).  I also asked if it has some signs for it.  She looked a little puzzled and thought maybe, but not sure.


So we drove along, and one thing we noticed with the houses that it is trash pickup day.  Lot of trash cans along the curb.  And one we noticed was very full with its hinged lid halfway open with trash.  (I mention this because it will be important later on).

Well, as we traveled along going further west on this road, we figured we missed the sign, so we turned around.  As we were about to give up finding Ross Abbey, we came to an intersection.  As we slowed down, I quickly noticed the crossing road to the right of us, about 100yards up the road was a newly paved parking lot, with a 1 floor buildings door open and a couple of work vans.  I figure lets go their and ask for some info. 
The lead foreman was great.  His work crew were getting the new edition to this elementary school finished in time for next weeks school opening.  I could not figure that one out as it is already end of May.  But we asked about Ross Abbey directions.  He first tried to explain how far to back on the road it is, as we drove west to far.  We said there were no signs for it.  He said there is, but it is small, like a regular street sign.  I go oh oh.  Here is where he mentions about the trash cans.  He said as you go back, look for a trash can that is very full with its lid half open.  Mary and I look at each other and say, we know where that is.  Now we are hoping the trash trucks havent picked up the trash yet.  We asked to use the restrooms, and as we are leaving we thanked him very much for all his help. 


So as we drove back on the road, we spotted the half open trash can.  Then next to it is a narrow road with thick bushes along the sides.  There was the street sign for Ross Abbey, but did not read that way.  It was actually in Gaelic (not sure of spelling).  We drove along this 1 lane road past a few houses and as a field opened up in front of us, their was Ross Abbey Friary in the distance.  Very cool.  The dusty road went along a cow pasture on our left.  We parked the car and found that we are the only ones here. 


Pics. In photobucket link below.


Ross Abbey Friary is quite the ruins where you can stroll room after room after room.  Some rooms were 2 stories high as the second floor fireplace was seen as the wood floor was not longer in place.  After a short time a mini bus arrived with its passengers.  They also took pics of the group of cows beginning to form along the edge of the parking lot fence.  I said hello to the bus driver as he waits.  I said how neat this place is and glad we found it.  He mentioned how he enjoys bringing folks here and that it can be a little challenging to find.  We finished visiting and headed down the skinny road toward the main road.  About 200 yards shy of the main road we confront an SUV coming in.  We had just passed a house and driveway on the right, so I backed up about 50 feet to get into the driveway to let the SUV get by.  Lots of bushes on this road.  Now we are hoping not to meet any one else till the main road.  We did okay.  We got back to Headford and the petro place.  Picked up some more Euro at the ATM and headed north again. 


Michele, this is where we did not follow your map.  Instead of going back on R333, we headed north on N84 for Westport.  The road looked pretty good.  A very nice road.


Next stop is Croagh Patrick through Westport on N5.

Ps.  Sorry my reports are so slowyawn and in small parts.  



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Very enjoyable trip report and no problem with the slowness. I think Bob (Itallian Chauffeur) takes the prize for keeping us in suspense for months with his trip report.

It sounds like you had some good adventures and finds. In the old days it was "turn left at the whitel cow" (and you hoped it had not moved). Now it is turn at the full trash can. The Irish sense of fun with directions never ceases to amaze me.



"Ireland Expert"  Michele Erdvig

Click links for Michele's Book or Custom Ireland Itinerary

Visit Michele's Irish Shop for unique Irish gifts and beautiful photos of Ireland.

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Believe me, as dumb as it may have sounded, it was the only way to find the roadinto the abbey.  The regular road sign just isnt enough for the tourist to find.  Perhapsthe locals want it that way to help keep traffic at a minimum.

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