Mark and Rachael Take on Ireland

Rachael Shearouse Start Date: Jan 8, 2018 - End Date: Jan 7, 2019
  • Ireland
  • Kilkenny, Ireland
  • Cork, Ireland
  • Clare, Ireland
  • Galway, Ireland
  • Dublin, Ireland

My Travel Story

by: Rachael Shearouse Start Date: Jan 8, 2018 - End Date: Jan 7, 2019
Mark and I have been planning at trip to volunteer, WWOOF and Explore Ireland! This will be Mark's first trip to Europe. We are planning a trip full of adventure but we also want to give back to the communities we visit. We are working with WOOF Ireland and other local organizations to plan some volunteer experiences along with our exploration.(more details to come as I hammer them out) As an environmental educator, I am looking for the most eco-friendly way to travel while we are there: walking, hiking, camping, and supporting sustainable businesses. We wish to immerse ourselves in the culture and enjoy the natural beauty of Ireland. Though we may visit a few tourist spots (Guiness Brewery, Blarney Stone) our goal is to see Ireland through a more local lense. We are both minimalist in our way of travel and will strive to book lodging with local families and eat locally.
  • Ireland
  • Kilkenny, Ireland
  • Cork, Ireland
  • Clare, Ireland
  • Galway, Ireland
  • Dublin, Ireland


  • WWOOF Ireland

    WWOOF Ireland
    If you are interested in finding out more about one of the organizations we are working with check out their site here:
  • Travel Plans

    Travel Plans
    It is a beautiful city that is steeped in Irish traditions. Kilkenny are the leading Hurling county in the country and the Gaelic sport is a religion in the area.
    Things to see in Kilkenny:

    Kilkenny Castle – Absolutely stunning, built in the 12th century, this castle is the heart of the city. A must see.
    Smithwicks Experience – The most famous Irish ale is over 300 years in existence and is very popular, a super chance to trial Ireland’s second most famous export after Guinness. Don’t worry you will be visiting the Guinness Brewery during your time in Dublin so you can compare the two and let us know which you prefer!
    St Canice’s Cathedral & Round Tower – 1 of 2 medieval round towers that can still be climbed in Ireland, dating back to the 13th century.
    Kilkenny Design Shop – Located opposite the Castle, this has some beautiful Irish arts, crafts and clothing.
    Hole in the Wall pub – Housed in the oldest townhouse in Ireland, this venue has incredible history. Visit here for a couple of pints after your first day in Ireland. Closed on Tuesdays. The Left Bank bar, beside Kilkenny Castle, is another nice place to socialize in the evening.
    Travel from Kilkenny to Cork making 2 stops at famous landmarks. One at the Rock of Cashel and the next just outside Cork city at Blarney Castle where you can kiss the famous Blarney Stone. This route will lead you by both sites. Explore Cork City: Oliver Plunkett street and its surrounding area are very popular and have some excellent pubs and live music venues for you to unwind in following your day of driving. Day Two: TBD local volunteer experience
    If time allows we will try to visit Kinsale. A beautiful seaside town with the best seafood in Ireland according to Lonely Planet
    Set off for the Cliffs of Moher and the Burren. The Cliffs of Moher are one of the most stunning sights you will come across in your lifetime. The cliffs are over 200 meters (700 feet tall and are over 8 km (5 miles) long making them a breathtaking sight along the Atlantic coast of Clare. On a clear day, which are rare, you can see the Aran islands along with the Blasket islands.
    Galway is the more artistic and layed-back city in Ireland. We will be working with the local art community (more details coming soon). Cultural immersion at it's best!
    Things we're looking at doing:
    Trinity College and the Book of Kells – Arguably one of the most famous landmarks and places to visit in Ireland. Trinity college is the most prestigious university in Ireland The Book of Kells is housed in the stunning old library of the college. The Book of Kells is thought to be over 1200 years old and is Ireland’s national treasure.

    St. Stephen’s Green – Located in the center of the city, it is a great place to unwind for an hour after your hectic week. There is a famous statue of Oscar Wilde in the park, the renowned Irish poet, novelist and playwright.

    Grafton Street – The premier shopping street of Ireland, this is the ideal place to pick up a memento of your week in Ireland or a gift for family and friends at home. Located adjacent to St. Stephen’s Green.

    Kilmainham Gaol – The number 1 attraction on Trip Advisor for Dublin. The jail held many Irish leaders involved in the 1916 Easter Rising prior to their execution on the grounds. It was built in 1796 and films such as Michael Collins, The Italian Job, In The Name of the Father and The Wind That Shakes the Barley were shot here. It is a must to book tickets in advance to guarantee admittance to the Gaol, we advise visitors to book as far out from their trip as possible as it can be booked out for weeks in advance. You can book tickets here.

    Guinness Storehouse – You have been thinking about this all week, time to embrace Ireland’s most famous export. Make sure to truly savor every second of your pint here as it is likely to be the best pint of Guinness you will ever taste. The tour itself shows the remarkable level of detail that goes into ensuring the taste is consistent in every keg produced. You can even pull your own pint of Guiness, who knows, if you are good at it you may end up staying in Ireland and moonlight as a bar man in one of the many pubs around the country!
    Temple Bar – Although it is expensive for drinks, even by Dublin standards, Temple Bar is loved by our visitors. There are cobble locked streets, live music on every corner and more than enough pubs to sample even more local whiskys and stouts.
    Croke Park – Ireland’s national games, Gaelic Football and Hurling, are played here with the finals of both sports occurring in September every year. Croke Park is the 3rd largest stadium in Europe in terms of capacity with room for 82,300 people. This is even more remarkable when you consider the players are completely amateur yet have more supporters cheering them on than most professional teams in the world. There is an excellent tour of the stadium available and there are interactive games where you can test your skills at both Gaelic Football and Hurling. If you are feeling particularly energetic and adventurous there is also a sky-walk on the stadium roof on offer giving you a view of the city.

    Glasnevin Cemetry – The resting place of Ireland’s most famous and notable figures such as Michael Collins, Eamon de Valera, Daniel O’Connell, Christy Brown and Luke Kelly of Dubliners fame. There are tours available for visitors throughout the year. There are two tours a day, seven days a week. We recommended booking your tour ticket in advance here as it can be busy.