After our 3 nights in Killarney, we continued along our journey by heading North towards the Cliffs of Moher in County Clare. The day started early for us but it was worth it. According to their website, the Cliffs of Moher get more crowded between 11am – 4pm. Therefore, they offer discounted tickets if you arrive early in the morning or later in the day. Of course we love an experience without crowds so we opted for the morning ticket.
One of the longer drives of our trip, it took 2.5 hours to get from Killarney to the Cliffs of Moher. There is a parking lot available for drivers arriving for their designated time slot. I highly recommend ordering your tickets online, since they are about half the price of purchasing them at the gate. We paid 4 euros per person online, and arrived just a little after 10am. For more information on ticket prices, check out the link here: Cliffs of Moher Tickets.
Since we knew it would soon get busy, we headed straight for the paths to take in the Cliffs in all their glory. It is quite evident the toll the Wild Atlantic has taken on the cliffs in shaping them. I’ve said this quite a bit while writing about Ireland, but it truly feels otherworldly.
There are a few walking paths you can take to view the Cliffs. Some areas have a wall protecting you from the edge, while others involve a more risky journey. As someone who is terrified of heights – I stayed comfortably behind the wall. Mark, on the other hand, was able to venture down the mud path to catch some views of the Cliffs from other angles.
After walking around outside, we bought tickets to visit O’Brien’s Tower. Inside a local guide told us more about the Cliffs of Moher and the tower. You can only purchase tickets at the tower and each guided visit takes about 30 minutes. From the top, you can get a more birds eye view of the Cliffs!
O’Brien’s Tower was build in 1835 by Cornelius O’Brien who believed Ireland could benefit from tourism. The tower hosted many visitors throughout the years and O’Brien was loved by the local farmers. After his death, they all contributed to a monument in his honor. While driving from the Cliffs to the Burren, we stopped to check out his monument.
After touring the tower, we made our way into the visitor’s center. There is an exhibit where you can learn more about the wildlife and preservation happening at the Cliffs. There is also a nice cafe where you can grab a light lunch and take in some more views.
We probably spent a little over 2 hours at the Cliffs before continuing on our journey to the Burren. To be honest, we didn’t exactly know what to expect while driving through the Burren but the stark difference in landscapes astonished us. The Burren is a bedrock with cracked pavement of glacial-era limestone. There are rock formations and archaeological sites throughout this area.
Our main attraction for driving through the Burren was to visit Poulnabrone dolmen, a neolithic megalith. It takes a little over 30 minutes to get from the Cliffs to here. This Dolmen is said to have been built as a sort of tomb, and is one of the largest out of the 172 that can be found across the Burren! It is said to date back to 4200 BC – 2900 BC.
From the Burren, it took about another hour to get to our last leg of the road trip: Galway! Stay tuned for some upcoming posts about our time there.