Thursday, August 4, 2016

Glengarriff's gem - The Ewe Experience

We came into Glengarriff with the expectation that it would be beautiful, as it is legendary among Irish Cruising Club members. What we didn't expect is for both of us to see in it the resemblance to the great lakes and camps in the Adirondack mountains in New York. Fringed in forest so unusual in Ireland and tall peaked hills, with tiny islands strewn throughout and camps perched on rocks jutting into the waters, it was hard to remember we were on the sea and not a lake. We liked it so much we stayed an extra day. The weather was good so we decided a walk was in order.

We had heard about the Ewe Experience, a sculpture garden. The young woman at the Tourist Office was so enthusiastic about it we had to go. It was a 5 km walk from town. Not too bad. About 3 miles and Google showed us a short cut which we missed on the way out (as it turns out that was a good thing). About and hour and a half later, scores of racing road bikes, motorcycles and cars on a road with no verge (SCARY) but lots of bilberries to pick, we arrived at our destination.

We had no idea what we were about to experience. It was astounding, delightful and totally captivating. A poignant juxtaposition of nature, sculpture, poetry and ecology. Very thoughtfully presented and completely surprising. We smiled for hours. It is a property developed by Kurt and Sheena, a couple who raised their daughters in this earth-minded environment. Kurt collects the entrance fee (€6.50 for adults) at the gate and Sheena staffs the shop and cafe. We spent some time talking to Sheena which was delightful. We bought their book and Sheena signed it. Very cool.

On the way home, we took the "shortcut" which goes up and over the mountain then sharply down to the harbour. Taking that road on the way out in the morning would have proven difficult as the incline from the harbour is very steep. It was the shorter route.  For that we were happy.

The actual loo. I thought it was just art.

The shortcut on the way back

No more paving

Lunch rocks in a tiny secret meadow.

The short cut road across the hills

Coming down to the Harbour

Looking out to the park on the water

Along the harbour road

View of the anchorage

Ferries to the island 

Our dinghy anchored out

RNLI boat and ferry at the main pier

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