If you believe in it, you can kiss the Blarney Stone on the top of Blarney Castle, about ten kilometres from the city. The legend derives from Cormac Teige McCarthy who, when he promised loyalty to Queen Elizabeth l, but would not give in to her, got the response from the Queen that he was giving her, “a lot of Blarney.”
If after climbing the Medieval stone staircases, hanging upside down over the edge of the castle you still feel like kissing the stone, well and good. Me, I can’t help thinking about everyone else who has kissed it!
Venture to the west of the county where thunderous surf pounds the beaches around Clonakilty. We stayed in a cottage up a boreen beside a zinc mine with the rustic name of, “Our Lady’s Well Mine.” A pastoral idyll with echoes of Arcady, except for the blast of gelignite every day at noon.
It can be so hot here on the beach that the sand will burn your feet as you walk out to the water. And when you get into the water be careful of the jellyfish the size of dinner plates, to say nothing of the sea urchins…
Not far from Cork is Cobh, or Queenstown which is actually the port for Cork and it was here that the Titanic made the final landfall before setting off on the fateful journey as had many an emigrant to the Americas before.
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