The  Irish Connection Third Edition
February 09, 2007 
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BIG BEN

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Irish Connection 3.0 London Westport Achill Island Clifden

Failte!  It was August in Europe and that can only mean one thing. VACATION. I had a business trip in London that was spaced over a couple of days. I decided to take Becky and the girls with me. The girls had never been to London so I thought why not. We had a great time sight seeing around London. We went off the beaten track a little because it was very crowded with tourists. We took the Big Bus tour of London and hit most of the major sights. It is a fabulous way to see London in a short time. The amount of history is just incredible. Becky loved the Harrods’s. The girls loved the Hamley’s toy store. And I loved just relaxing in Hyde Park watching the people run around.

After returning from London, we packed up and headed out to the West of Ireland. The first stop was a town called Westport. It is in County Mayo. We stayed at the Castlecourt Hotel, which was grand because it had a swimming pool. I wondered if my kids enjoyed the scenery and views of western Ireland or the hotel swimming pool more. Stupid question. Westport was fantastic and we had some good weather. The kids enjoyed the Westport House the most. It is an amusement park that is on the grounds of an old Manor house. We had the whole family including Maeve on the log flume that was a sight to behold.

After Westport we drove to Achill Island. It is a hidden gem of beauty. With Ireland starting to become very developed Achill Island is still very much undeveloped. The scenery is unlike any place I have been in Ireland. The mountains and sea were awesome. We stayed at the Isle House B&B for 17pp. The view outside our window was priceless. I guess the problem with the West of Ireland is that you only get a few weeks a year of great weather that is why it is so undeveloped.

After Westport we drove to Clifden and stayed at Dave Murray’s mother’s B&B called the Ocean Villa. It is situated in Kingstown right on the edge of a bay. We have known the Murray’s from the time we lived in Ireland in 1994 so it is like staying with family. Clifden was busy filled with tourists who were there from all over the world for the Annual Connemara Pony Show. The girls enjoyed themselves seeing the horses compete. The weather was fantastic and the girls went swimming in the ocean, still a little cold for my liking. Clifden was great.

Well it is September and that means back to work and school for the McNamara clan. It sure was a great summer. I will be spending my Sunday’s listening to the Giants over the Internet. I will miss autumn in the states and the tailgating for the Giants. So long for now.

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