Somehow I’ve managed to finally wrap this up to our last few days of our trip and sum it up in Part 3!  You can see the first two parts of our trip to Ireland here and here if you need to catch up!  This is day 6 and it began with us leaving Kenmare and heading toward Limerick via the Cliffs of Moher.  This was definitely a must-see and a favorite of all of us, I think!

This is a beautiful destination which you can spend anywhere from 30 minutes to a couple hours viewing.  This was also a very windy spot, so be prepared with jackets and hats!  There is a paved walkway with lots of steps going both directions for lots of viewing space.  There are also restrooms, a cafe, and shops, just FYI.

The drive on this day was another beautiful one with lots of green gorgeousness in every direction!

There are ruins, castles, and thatched roof houses to see along the way as well.

Arriving in Limerick about midday, we decided to start at the Hunt Museum, which was cute but small, and then just explored the city by foot.

A couple of the main points of interest in the city are St Mary’s Cathedral and King John’s Castle which we voted to just view from the outside so we could see more of the city.

We did find some cute shops along the way, one of them was Sostrene Green, which was like a mini European Hobby Lobby– right up our alley!

The canals and bridges were beautiful and we got some amazing views of a rainbow on our walk back to our hotel that night!

The hotel we stayed in here was called The Absolute and it was fine with ample-sized rooms.  But the breakfast was exceptional and had great views as well!  Here is the hotel’s site if you want to check it out.  

From here, we drove to Galway on Day 7 and it was yet another beautiful drive through the countryside!

The main attractions in Galway are the Latin Quarter, the Spanish Arch, and other museums and cathedrals.  

We had lunch in the Latin Quarter and had fun shopping and listening to street performers.

One of the things Ireland is most famous for is the Claddagh Ring.  If you’re not familiar with this, it’s a symbol comprised of two hands holding a heart with a crown on top.  The significance of it is that it symbolizes a pledge of friendship, love, and loyalty to the recipient!  My husband has always loved these and first gave my Claddagh ring to me when we were in college!  In recent years, he has bought one for each of our girls as well.  

Galway is actually the place where the original designer of the ring was from, so there are so many shops and symbols everywhere you look there!  

We even found the shop where my husband had ordered the girls’ rings from and they have a little video that tells the story of the original design.  So cute!

More canals and bridges make Galway another beautiful place.  

While looking around the city, we also came across the National University of Ireland at Galway, which was beautiful!

On this night, we stayed at a cute, but tiny boutique hotel called The Continental Boutique Hotel.  It was honestly just humorous to see our family of 6 trying to get our huge luggage up the stairs (there are no elevators), and then to try to move around the room.  We had 2 rooms with 3 each and even that was too many people for such a small space.  Memories!

The next morning, we headed out of Galway and made our way back across toward Dublin, making several pitstops along the way. One place we stopped was Kildare, which was a cute town with plenty of things to interest us.  For the girls and I, the Cath Kidston outlet was at the top of the list!

This was in a very cute outlet mall which I would have loved to shop through longer, but we were with the whole family and there was more to see!

One of the fun things to see was this collection of celebrity memorabilia at the Museum of Style Icons in the Newbridge Siverware Showroom.  It was just a spur-of-the-moment stop we decide to make when we saw a brochure about it and it turned out to be really fun.

That was our last stop before making our way back to Dublin for the night.  We checked back into our first hotel, the Sandymount, then headed to a special Irish music and dance dinner show we had planned called Celtic Nights.  It’s in the basement of the Arlington Hotel, and we had a great table, right in front of the stage.  If you decide on this, keep in mind the actual show starts at 8:00 pm and lasts about 2 hours.  We had been seated for dinner by 7, so we were there for a long night.  Also- its a prepaid dinner, but there are several entree choices on the menu that required an upcharge.  We did enjoy it, however!

Whew!  I think that wraps up the main highlights of our entire trip.  We left Dublin the next morning for the long trip home.  We spent a total of 8 days touring, plus one day to travel there and another to travel home.  It was just the right amount of time for us, as we did get to see almost everything we had planned, plus some things we added in!  We did plan this trip ourselves without a travel agent, and it definitely can be done.  Traveling as a large family of 8 was probably a little more challenging than it would be for just a couple.  But we loved our time there and definitely made great memories.  I hope this answers some questions for those of you who may be planning a trip yourself!  Let me know if you’d like more info on things I’ve shared and I’ll try to help!