Blown away at Galley Head – my stay in a lighthouse in Ireland

Sometimes the best things are on our doorstep and we just don’t even notice them. That’s what struck me when staying at the Galley Head Lighthouse in Cork recently. So many people I met who lived in the area said something along the lines of “Oh, I have always meant to stay there, but you know what it’s like when something is on your doorstep. You never get around to it”.  It’s hard to miss Galley Head lighthouse, however, its beautiful beam a familiar sight for many as it illuminates Clonakilty’s coast. Read more about one of the finest places to stay on the Wild Atlantic Way, and perfect for a walking holiday in West Cork.

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Sustaining the wonderful island of Sark

Sark, one of the car-free Channel Islands

If there is one place I could go back to this mid summer, it would have to be Sark. One of the Channel Islands, it takes a good while to get there but it is so worth it. Sark is a car-free and sustainable Channel Island lying 11 km east of Guernsey and about 40 km west of the Cherbourg Peninsula of France. I discovered it on a trip to (also gorgeous, but not quite so special) Jersey a few years ago, which I was heading to by ferry from the south of England. I got chatting to a crowd of cool young ones, who told me they were en route to Sark. They come every year around midsummer to gaze at the stars, because Sark is not only car free, but it is totally free of street lights and so an astronomical Arcadia.

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Sea kayaking in Baja, Mexico – Irish style

I say it again and again – kayakers are cool. I get the chance to kayak a lot on my travels, and kayaking guides are, nearly without exception,  fun to be with, informative, caring and sharing. And these guys, Atlantic Sea Kayaking, based on the cove-a-licious coast of West Cork, Ireland, are top of my list. Not only are they superb activity ambassadors in my native Ireland, but they also run sea kayaking trips in Baja, Mexico every winter. It is this connection with Mexico which led to their founders, Jim and Maria Kennedy, being honoured recently by the Mexican government and receiving  the highest award  that can be bestowed on a non Mexican, The Ohtli Award.

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