Twice now we have passed up a chance to see Blarney Castle with its famous stone.
According to Rick Steves and others, Blarney Castle is really more of a tourist trap than historic site, so once again we are going to pass it by. If anyone has been there, please let us know what you thought.
Instead of kissing an old stone, we headed for Muckross House in Kilarney to see some traditional Irish farms. Muckross House was the first national park in Ireland. The house was built in 1843 on 11,000 acres. The last owners donated the entire estate to the people of Ireland in 1932. Eventually, it would become the center of Kilarney National Park.
On the grounds the Irish park service built a rec-creation of a traditional rural townland. You can visit complete working farms of different classes from early 20th century Ireland with docents in period dress to explain and answer questions. It was very informative and fun! Elijah really enjoyed meeting the farm animals, especially the farm dogs. He now wants an Irish Wolfhound. Great, he’s already expensive enough to feed! The Border Collies wouldn’t let him go!
Mish found a friend too.
I liked seeing how old Irish schools taught. Well behaved students paying attention in class to the teacher. Ah, the good old days!
Muckross is a wonderful place to stroll through beautiful gardens, tour a 65 room elegant mansion, learn some history, pet different animals, picnic on a lake, shop for unique crafts, and have some tea and treats. So, there something for everyone in the family. We highly recommend it if you’re in the Kilarney area.