Dingle Peninsula, Republic of Ireland

Nearing the end of the All Ireland Rocker trip with Busabout / Shamrocker Adventures. Today we explore the Dingle Peninsula, a stretch of land jutting out to the sea that like most of Ireland is breath taking and green. It should be noted that the ring road around the peninsula while 2-way is generally taken only in one direction by the locals and tourists in the know, that is because for most of the journey its a cliff-side road without a lot of room for modern traffic to allow for casual passing.

First stop on the ring road was a farmer’s estate where for a few euros you can pay to explore the Beehive huts (Clochán), the old farmhouse and pet baby sheep. Expecting a bit of a tourist trap I was pleasantly surprised that it was actually pretty straight forward process. Pay to enter and explore at one’s leisure. The baby sheep where in one section and as long as you were gentle you could pick up one for a photo.

They don’t mince words… exactly as advertised… also historic Beehive Huts

But for a bit of culture I did manage to drag myself away from the cute baby sheep and check out the Beehive Huts that are another staple of the area history.

Next stop on the Dingle Peninsula is Coumeenoole Beach, first we stopped for another photo opportunity then headed down to the beach itself.

Overlooking Coumeenoole Beach

Its quite a trek down to the beach from the parking lot, I opted to grab some more photos and a awesome time-lapse using my iPhone and the DJI Osmo Mobile 3 which makes up my micro travel kit for photographers.

Next we headed out to the point of the peninsula, it got very craggy out there and the wind did start to pick up but was not unmanageable, again weather seemed to be on our side (fun note, the north side of the island was getting pelted by heavy rain so weather is highly variable on the emerald isle – I just got really lucky and I’m sure that luck with eventually run out… cough spoiler cough cough). The Devils Horn as the region is known is quite something, and looking out to the ocean you can see some islands which were used in a recent Star Wars movie.

At the start and subsequent end of our trip around Dingle is the small town of Dingle. Known for its dolphin Fungie that lives out in the bay I had to take a look and see if I could spot the elusive critter.

They even have a statue by the marina honoring their unexpected town mascot
Dingle Harbour / Marina
FOUND HIM!
(J/K – Photoshop is my friend – But I fooled a bunch of people on the bus!)

We did stop for lunch in town, so several of us found a nice place called John Benny’s Pub to have some lunch at the recommendation of our tour guide Gemma. I had the fish of the day and chips, which came with peas as the veggies.

And that was it for the Dingle Penisula, a great day exploring a unique region of Ireland. Along the way we did drive by the famous “Rose Hotel” and stop in town for a rest break. I managed to find a rose bush and an old car to take pictures of… but otherwise short break.

Hilton Head Island, South Carolina

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We arrived on Hilton Head Island after a short drive from Savannah, Georgia. Looking forward to a couple of days of blue skies and warm weather, a bit of golf, a bit of cycling, and perhaps a bit of sand between the toes. Of course, my camera will accompany me most of the time. Photos and more stories to follow (eventually)

New England Trip 2012 – Day 5 – Clinton, Connecticut

New England Trip 2012 – Day 5 – Clinton, Connecticut (Clinton Crossing Outlet Mall)

After four days of driving on mostly secondary roads through the Adirondacks and Vermont, I had to readjust to the joy of Interstate Highways and driving in more densely populated areas. After visiting Castle Craig in the morning, we headed to New Haven, Connecticut Lighthouse Point area on the Atlantic Ocean.

The weather was a bit too cool for tipping a toe in the water and that would probably explain the lack of people on the beach. A few fishermen had there lines in the water but not much else was happening in this beach area.  Even the sea gulls were limited in numbers. Continue reading

New England Trip 2012 – Day 2 – Lake George

New England Trip 2012 – Day 2 – Lake George

By the time that we got to Lake George, we were tried and a bit hungry.  We really hadn’t traveled very far but we had stopped at plenty of locations to look around and take photos. Continue reading

Foley Mountain Conservation Area, Westport, Ontario

Foley Mountain Conservation Area, Westport, Ontario (Location)

The Foley Mountain Conservation Area is one of a number of natural areas maintained by the Rideau Valley Conservation Authority (RVCA) and many volunteers. Foley Mountain is located on the high side of the Big Rideau Lake which itself is the high point of the Rideau Canal System, A UNESCO World Heritage Site. From the Spy Rock ramp and viewing area, you can gaze out over the town of Westport and see for miles.
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Barcelo Premium Marina Palace and Cayo Libertad – Checking out the resort

Barcelo Premium Marina Palace and Cayo Libertad – Checking out the resort

One of the benefits of the direct flight from Ottawa was our arrival time. After checking in and taking a look at our room, we still had most of the afternoon to look around the resort in daylight hours.

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Group Campground – Sandbanks

P1050401-webA bunch of us headed to Sandbanks Provincial Park for the August Long Weekend. This Park is made up of two sections, a large campground with sandy beaches and the ‘banks’ which is Sandy Dunes for which you can walk for hours on. P1050402-web

Located Near Kingston Ontario and along Lake Ontario you have to act fast to get spots when the Camping Season Starts (and the Ontario Parks Reservation System Goes Online) to reserve a spot; that said we were in the group campground which you have to call directly. I can’t remember who in our group was fast enough to score of the of the two group campgrounds, but I thank them. P1050404 The Group Campground has enough room to hold numerous tents and has a large central firepit, we are also across a street and some forest from the main campsite so your very secluded. The seclusion is a plus/minus sort of deal, although your group won’t be having other campers walking through your patch of green, your also on the far side of the campground with your own ‘beach’ which pales in comparison to the main beach so to really get that “Sandbanks” feel you will need to walk across the main campground to the main beach.

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What color is the Sky? The sky is BLUE!

After all of the rain and overcast skies that we have had recently, the sky in Ottawa was cloudless for a good portion of today. I decided that all that sunshine shouldn’t be allowed to go to waste so I grabbed my camera and out I went for a whirlwind tour. For today’s outing I decided to use my Nikkor 28-105 f3.5 zoom lens and carried my Nikkor 16mm f2.8 fish-eye in my pocket.

First I stopped to photograph some scilla and puskinia in my own garden.

Then I headed over to Ottawa’s experimental farm where I found some yellow daffodils and some two-toned daffodils. I used the macro feature of the 28-105mm lens and then switched to the 16mm using the fish-eye’s field curvature to get a different look. A bumblebee just happened to come along while I was lying on the ground in the middle of a batch of daffodils.
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Cycling in Florida – Daytona Beach Shores – Gulls & More Gulls

When we were at Merritt Island, an avid birder told me that, if we wanted to see gulls, the the place to be at 3PM was the beach at Frank Rendon Park at 2705 S. Atlantic Ave in Daytona Beach Shores.

Monday, January 31st – We found the park and were there at 3PM and the gulls were arriving from every direction. Thousands and thousands of gulls. Quite the spectacle!

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Cycling in Florida – Ponce Inlet

Started the day out with a trip to Ponce Inlet which is about 10 miles south of Daytona Beach. Attractions of Ponce Inlet include Florida’s tallest lighthouse and a long jetty stretching out into the Atlantic Ocean and a number of boardwalks and trails as well as a Marine Science Center.


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