Irish Honeymoon: Stop 3 – Dromoland Castle and Bunratty

So the next stop was my favorite. The majority of our trip was a whirlwind and this was the leg where we got to slow down and just relax and enjoy each others company. We had a wonderful three-night stay at the beautiful Dromoland Castle (in the town of New-Market-on-Fergus). President Clinton, John Travolta and President George W. have all stayed at Dromoland, so I was unreasonably excited before we even got there. Plus, after two nights at McGann’s Pub I was ready for a little luxury. And luxurious it was.

We checked-in and were welcomed by a host of pleasant and super accommodating people. Our room was amazing – very large, gorgeous traditional decor, American outlets so I could finally use my straightener, huge very clean bathrooms, a view of a beautiful courtyard…ah…it was awesome. And, the things to do on the ground of the estate were endless – there’s an 18-hole golf course, full-service spa, fishing, archery, clay-pigeon shooting, biking, and tennis. I was beyond impressed.

The first afternoon we played a round of golf on their beautiful course and then had a steak dinner at the clubhouse’s Fig Tree Restaurant. Following dinner we went into New-Market-On-Fergus to visit a few of the local pubs.

The next morning we got up early, took part in Dromoland’s amazing breakfast, and then headed to Bunratty Castle and Folk Park that is about 15-20 minutes away. I think Bunratty Castle was my favorite castle we visited. It had so much history and the tour guides were fabulous. The Folk Park was also really fun. It is a reenactment of a small 19th century Victorian Irish community – staged houses, dressed up tour guides, lots of livestock and old-time stores where you could buy maps, Irish momentos and more. We had fish and chips at the infamous Durty Nelly’s next to the castle and then picked up our favorite brand of mead (honey wine where the word “honeymoon” was derived – how appropriate?!) at the Bunratty Winery down the road.

When we got back to Dromoland we took part in Mrs. White’s Tea, which involved wonderful tea (which the Husband loved) and tiers of sandwiches, scones, biscuits and super decadent sweets and chocolates (which I loved way more). We were so full from our afternoon spread that we skipped dinner and just went into town to try out the pubs we missed the night before.

The next morning we both went on our first fly-fishing trip with our very own Ghilles, Denis. This was definitely one of those activities the Husband was way more interested in doing than I was, but it ended up being so fun (maybe because I caught the only fish). But, the atmosphere alone made it worth while (I mean, do you see that swan?)

At this point, I was still mildly stressed about how cold I was going to get while on the water for 4 hours.

After several hours of fishing, we went back and got ready for a wonderful first-class dinner at Dromoland’s renowned Earl of Thomond Restaurant. We had 5+ courses and 2 bottles of Cotes du Rhone with fabulous service. We were so full (and tipsy) from dinner that we called it a night and ended our fabulous stay at Dromoland.

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