Anne & Tom Visit Ireland travel blog

We left early from our hotel

Our bus was packed

Doctor Donal fixes Bruce's foot

Over the bridge to the boat dock

Buildings around the dock in Portmagee

Another super "loo"

Sailing monument

A fleet of boats ready for the Skelligs

Off for the hour ride

The boats arrive at Skellig Michael

The boat heaved up and down as we disembarked

Our boat at the dock at Skellig Michael

Our first set of steps

We begin the climb of the 700 steps

It looks like we are scaling a cliff - we were!

Up Up Up

Tom doing his thing

The photograph of this jagged formation

Another view

There were amazing natural rock formations

Formation and Little Skellig

Nearing the midpoint of the 700 steps

The steps were quite narrow in spots

The magnificent top of Skellig Michael

The surf pounds the rocks below

How the monks build the monastery way up here is amazing

The beehive structures where they lived

More living quarters

The oratory structure

An archeologist gave a very long sermon on the history of the...

Little Skellig

The return to the bottom


Clinging to the side of the mountain

Very steep

A roiling sea

A Dinosaur?

Somehow vegetation clings to the rocks

The puffins were still around. They migrate in August.

The puffins showed no fear of humans

We had seen puffins in Iceland

Such beautiful birds

Still a long way down

Little Skellig - our boat will circle it on the way back

Back on board for the trip to Portmagee

Waves crashing on Little Skellig

Crashing waves

Fifty-two thousand (52,000) Gannets with 7 foot wing spans populate the island

A peep hole worn in the rocks

The effects of erosion


Splashing boat waves as we return

A gull

The pub where we had lunch

Talking about our experience

Our last stop before Dingle is Inch Beach

A surfing school was holding class

Inch Beach

We were on the road early to drive to a village called Portmagee, where we took a boat over a fairly rough sea to the Skellig Island. The landing is tricky, next to a pier where we were assisted out of the boat and onto the steps. This apparently was the first day in awhile that the landing spot had been calm enough to even be able to go there! At the top of Skellig Michael, is an amazing ruined monastery, founded about 800AD or earlier. The walk there was a steep 700 steps up - and then down again to the pier. How the monks ever got up there in the first place to build the steps and the monastery and grow some food, seems incredible. This site had stone "beehive" style huts and a place of worship (oratory). The raiding Vikings later discovered it in order to plunder the gold religious vessels. The sun came out when we reached the peak! It was spectacular.

After our return in the boat to Portmagee, we had lunch in a pub, and drove a fair distance on to Dingle, stopping for a brief visit to Inch Beach. ("Inch" means beach in Irish, I think - it was much bigger than one inch!) Arriving in Dingle we gladly got into our hotel rooms, and rested up before yet another marvelous dinner.

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