The small town of Kinsale, where we stayed for two nights, was a lovely place to spend a few days in Ireland. While there weren’t many big “to do” items to check off our list in Kinsale, that was actually quite nice – it was the perfect place to stroll around, poke into little shops, eat a good meal, and relax.
We began our second day in town with a walking tour led by Don of Don & Barry’s Historic Stroll. What’s incredible to me is how, even in a smaller place like Kinsale, there’s so much history to uncover. I don’t know, perhaps it’s just the history major/history nerd in me talking here, but that’s pretty awesome in my book.
Next, we headed up to Charles Fort, a star-shaped fort that guards the entrance to Kinsale’s harbor. While we soaked up even more history while touring the fort, the most remarkable thing here was the views. It’s something I have written and will probably write a million times while blogging this trip, but man, Ireland is gorgeous.
From the Fort, we walked the Scilly Trail back into Kinsale. The trail, which takes 30-45 minutes to walk (depending on how many flower photos you take along the way, ahem), is a scenic way to absorb even more gorgeous views, as you’re basically overlooking the harbor the entire way.
Upon our arrival back into town, we headed to The White House for lunch. I had my old standby, fish ‘n chips, for lunch, and we shared a slice of Bailey’s Chocolate Chip Cheesecake for dessert. Bailey’s makes everything delicious, and this cheesecake was no exception – it was one of the best things I ate during this trip.
After lunch, we spent the afternoon relaxing. We sat by the harbor for a while, did a little shopping, and made a quick grocery store run. While in Ireland, we had noticed the Share a Coke campaign, where bottles came labeled with various names on them. Well, at the Kinsale grocery store, we finally found one with my own name on it. I thought that was pretty cool! It’s like they know I have a diet coke addiction and are just tempting me.
For dinner, we headed to Crackpots, where we ordered off the “Early Bird” menu. Unlike in the US, where I think of an early bird special as something that runs around 4 or 5pm, the early bird specials in Ireland usually went until 7pm – so you can go out to dinner around 6:30, get a cheaper meal, and not feel like a senior citizen. Win/win!
Anyway…I started with a goat cheese salad (a recurring theme for me in Ireland; to say I was obsessed with goat cheese salads during this trip would be an understatement). For our entrees, my mom opted for salmon while I went with the duck leg. I don’t typically order duck, but I decided to be more adventurous here and it paid off – the dish was delicious! And, to end, I had the brownie with butterscotch sauce.
After dinner, we decided to explore St. Multose church, which was just around the corner from our restaurant. We poked around the cemetery for a while and saw many graves that were labeled as being for victims “of the Lusitania outrage.” As we had learned on our morning walking tour, the ship was torpedoed by a German U-boat near Kinsale in 1915, and many of the victims were brought to Kinsale for burial.
And with that, our time in lovely little Kinsale drew to a close. Next up? A visit to a sheep farm and arrival in Dingle, which just might be one of the most charming places on earth.
- Charles Fort: Summer Cove, Kinsale, Co. Cork, Ireland | +353.21.477.2263
- The White House: Pearse St., Kinsale, Co. Cork, Ireland | +353.21.477.2125
- Crackpots: 3 Cork St., Kinsale, Co. Cork, Ireland | +353.21.477.2847