"This blog is not necessarily for lovers of art, it includes a variety of topics and whatever. I'm a painter who likes to know what's really going on in the world today. So you might find anything from Shamrocks to Salmiakki mentioned here on my blog. There will of course be some boring, factual and informational posts, but I'll keep them to a minimum, I promise!

And I might get a bit nostalgic now and then.

So you have been warned!"

- Alan Hogan

Monday, September 9, 2013

Loops and Hookers!

Connemara pony at Gurteen Bay, Roundstone

Part 5 of my holiday adventures in Ireland and sadly this was our last day on the west coast. The main reason I made this blog was to reflect on the type of holiday I rarely have a chance to take. Mainly because whenever I do manage to get back to Ireland it is important for me firstly to spend time with my parents and my brother's family living in Dublin. Also, it's rare that Ireland's summer weather gets as good as this year 2013.

This part of our trip took us around one of Ireland's best locations to drive, the Connemara Loop. After leaving early in our car from our Kinvara holiday home we first drove around Galway bay and immediately tried to bypass Galway city. Easier said than done however, with so much traffic and a chain of roundabouts to pass. Luckily our Finnish friends had lots to talk about and questions to be answered, so the time went nicely. Below are a few photos from our trip, simply click on each image to enlarge.

Roadtrip map around the Connemara Loop.
(our route in red)

Having bypassed Galway city our journey took us right through Galway county and it's beautiful landscape. It's easy to enjoy the views of the Twelve Bens mountain range along the way, but care was necessary as some of the local sheep have a habit of wandering out on to the roads. Here's someone else's video footage of the views.

This area is a popular part of Ireland for artists also, with some of the country's most famous artworks originating from here. Jack B. Yeats and Paul Henry are just some of the famous Irish names associated with painting in Connemara.

Cloudy Day, Connemara - Paul Henry
Oil on canvas board, 

The first stop we made on our route was Roundstone, a village popular for it's culture and arts. As well as being a home for painters, it's also rich in traditional Irish music and dancing. Unfortunately we weren't sticking around long enough for any of that. So a quick stroll up and down the village, a cup of coffee and a slice of cake in a cafe and we were on our way again. We did get to see the nearby bus-stop, an all-in-one Post office/Petrol station/Grocery store and a couple of Galway Hookers!

Click images to enlarge!

Bus-stop at Roundstone

Shop/Gas station/Post office

Galway Hookers
Traditional fishing boats used in the Galway Bay area

Roundstone, Co.Galway.

After leaving Roundstone, we couldn't resist stopping of at one of the many nearby beaches dotted along the Connemara coastline. Here we had to kick off our shoes and go for a paddle.

White sandy beach at Gurteen Bay, Roundstone.

'Good to get the feel of Irish waters again!!

Beach at Gurteen Bay, Roundstone.

It was time to head to the town of Clifden next for dinner. The sea air in Ireland always makes me hungry for some reason. We had some excellent food at Mannion's Seafood Restaurant on Market street in Clifden. A great place to eat!
After dinner we headed out from Clifden via the Sky road, a scenic route which takes you up over the landscape and offers amazing views of the coast from a parking point along the way. It's not called the Sky road for nothing!

View from the Sky road, Clifden

With the sun finally began to go down it was time to head back to spend our last night in Kinvara. But before that we made our way past several other scenic locations, stopping at Connemara National Park, Killary Harbour (Ireland's only fjord), Leenane and Kylemore Abbey. Although we didn't actually manage to see much of Kylemore Abbey as the sun was setting blindingly in our view. But I did capture this nice shot from the opposite direction which I thought was even more appealing. 

Landscape close to Kylemore Abbey

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This is part 5 of a set of 'Ireland' travel posts here on my blog. Click on the destinations below to read the rest!

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- Alan 


1 comment:

Raija Maria Rintapää said...

Thank you for the video Allan. Have been to UK many times and feeling home there but now it seems like Ireland was calling. The video made me cry in a good way like seeing a dear friend I had missed.

:D Raija

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The Art Garage, Finland

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