Our Adventure to Dublin Ireland

Ireland from above

Thinking & Planning

Something we’ve always wanted to do was travel the world.  And, so we did, we worked and planned for all our trips around the world.  Afterall, you live once and you cannot take things with you, so why not enjoy that life and travel, create experiences and love the people of the world.  There is so much rich culture and food to experience. The daily lives from one country to another can be so different and yet, make so much sense. The economies are set up differently and the shops are not Megastores as we have all over in the United States.  Yes, we are originally from the United States and that is and will always be our home. However, seeing the world is our passion and our dream. So, we are off to Dublin Ireland.

Dublin Airport

We first land in Dublin Airport.  The first thing we notice is that is it crazy busy.  People are hustling all over and it’s not a surprise as this is one the largest airports around.  So, we suggest that you put together a plan. It is easy to plan ahead as the airport has a map online to be able to navigate properly.  We are finally ready to leave the airport and pass all the customs things and now, WOW, the options. In the US, most just get a rental car, but here there are buses and taxies and oh my.  This is another area that is helpful to look at the options and plan ahead as well.

Temple Bar

Things we wanted to visit while in this amazing town were the Temple Bar, which is rich with history and dates back to the 1300’s.  Just seeing it in person was jaw-droppingly awesome. The red exterior did not disappoint, it has that Irish feel we totally expected and, not going to lie, the Irish accents are still super cute.  

The Temple Bar

Guinness Storehouse

We headed on over to the Guinness Storehouse, as it may look, we do love Irish beer and what better place to learn about it than from Guinness.  This place was totally amazing. There were several floors rich with Irish history and we learned so much about the Guinness family along the way.  The reward for learning all of this was a nice pint of Guinness with a 360-degree view of Dublin!! That view was spectacular. Seeing all of the architecture and old buildings was truly amazing and totally worth it.

St. Patrick’s Cathedral

St. Patrick’s Cathedral was another great stop along the way.  In fact, we were very curious of this Cathedral, after all, it was St. Patricks and being from the states with all the St. Patricks festivities, this one caught our eye.  This was founded in 1131, which was sooo cool to us. Seeing things older than the United States was one part of the trip that was just so humbling. The stonework and detailing was unbelievable, there is simply nothing like this back home.  The size of the space was, well, just WOW. Looking at all the stain glass and ceilings and yes, this was certainly one of our favorites.

Just roaming the streets of Dublin was an experience.  The buildings are so old and the stonework is so amazing.  Listening to the people speak and enjoying the rich culture there.  Of course, there are pubs all around to have a quick bite to eat and a beer.  There are cathedrals and churches all over. Visiting the places such as the Trinity College Library, Phoenix Park and so much more.  We truly loved Ireland.

Our Trip to Yokohama Japan

Yokohama Japan

We knew traveling was our passion when we met.  But, it has truly become a life-changing experience.  The sights, sounds, and foods that can be experienced by just getting out there are amazing.  The feeling alive has never meant more to me than it has since we have really set our goals on traveling the world.

This time we decided Yokohama, Japan would be a great destination.  Being from the US and not of Asian descent, we also have an interest in an entirely different culture than anything we have experienced.  And, Japan didn’t disappoint.

The first thing we noticed right away was the humidity and big city smell.  And, another observation was that I was a tall blonde amazon compared to the locals.  Something I hadn’t given much thought about until I was in the thick of it. This city is very close to Tokyo and lends itself to foreign visitors by using writing characters we can understand.  If you get off the beaten path to some of the smaller regions, you will not see characters that we are used to reading.

There are so many things to do in Yokohama, but be sure to leave a lot of time to just walk around.  That’s what we did mostly, take in the surroundings, the people and the culture. They have vending machines for just about any and everything and the shopping is amazing.  The subway or train stations are layers deep with all kinds of shops and things to see. There are trending little coffee shops and bistros. We found a great little pub that was in the original “red light” district area, so the bartender told us.  And, it would seat about 12 people in total, which was not uncommon. The bars and restaurants are small, something we didn’t see a lot of people mentioning. This particular bar was “American Themed” which was pretty funny. They had a lot of American music but no Jimmy Buffett, so, we fixed that before we left.

Queen’s Square

This is a great example of the sheer amount of shops that are in Yokahama.  This place is huge and the sculpture in the front is giant. And, it offers some beautiful views of the city.  It was a nice enclosed place with air conditioning was welcoming on a hot day. We actually ended up here after coming across it on TripAdvisor and reading reviews.

Nipponmaru Memorial Park

This was a great look at history as well as a nice view of the Ferris Wheel.  This place had beautiful views and an old ship. But, the best part was grass!  Something in this city that you don’t see a lot of unless you go to the temples or out parts of town.  The coastline was beautiful.

China Town

Explore the largest Chinatown out there.  The vibrant colors and food smells are to die for.  This is a place to come with an empty stomach. The arches or entrances are truly beautiful.  It is something to see for sure.

Yamashita Park

Another great place by the water with grass and ocean, what could be better!  Beautiful place to sit and get away from all the people, did I mention, there are a lot of people in Yokahama.  

If you ever have a chance to visit Yokohama, Do IT!  

Down Under In Sydney Australia

Sydney Australia From Above

Traveling hasn’t gotten boring, it’s what we love, and exploring these new cities has been simply amazing.  This is the life to live for sure. This next trip, we travel to Australia.  Sure, there’s the Opera House that is what this place is known for, and it is pretty cool to see in person.  However, there is so much more to this great place. And, since, Opera isn’t our thing, we didn’t actually go see an Opera, but I’m sure if you enjoy that sort of thing, this is the place to go.  The architecture was beautiful though, but we love looking at buildings and gardens.

During this trip, we did much of what we do best, wander.  We love to get out there and take a look around at all there is to see.  Tourist attractions aren’t always the coolest part of a vacation, and sometimes there are some off the beaten path attractions that are way more interesting.

SS Ayrfield

We found a great off the beaten path option, of course.  The SS Ayrfield, which is found in Australia’s Homebush Bay.  Homebush Bay was a trading port at one time but now there are ships that were decommissioned and left where they are floating.  This one, in particular, has been taken over by trees, which was a cool site to see.

Wendy’s Secret Garden

We love the city but we also love to find these hidden treasures of grass.  Being from the Mid-West we are used to seeing more grass than cement and pavement.  Well, Wendy’s Secret Garden didn’t disappoint. Apparently, this garden is built over an old railway yard by a grieving woman.  But, the sites and smells are so beautiful and seeing the city from afar was a nice touch. This place is on the North side and not far from Luna Park. The entrance is under the old train tracks and isn’t really easy to spot, but well, it is a “Secret Garden”.

Cockatoo Island

cockatoo

Cockatoo Island is rich in history from Convicts to shipbuilding.  There are cafes to grab a bite to eat or pack a picnic. There is a beautiful campground that is only $45 a night to stay with a tent if you are on a budget, this is a nice option.  We didn’t stay here but it would be a great option. It was, however, a great place to visit that was close to the city but away from the hustle and bustle. The smell and sites of the harbor are amazing and it is certainly a place to take time to visit if you are ever in Sydney.  The waterfront cafes and panoramic harbor views were just amazing and breathtaking.

Bondi Beach

bondi beach

The BEACH!  Yes, we, of course, had to check out the most famous beach in Australia and it didn’t disappoint.  The people watching here was amazing, however, there were also great waves and cafe’s all over. It took about a half hour from Sydney’s center to get there and it was certainly worth the wait.  The coastal trail was amazing to walk and listen to the peaceful ocean sounds and you can swim in various spots, however, it’s the ocean and it is cold. Of course, just seeing the ocean is a great treat for this mid-western couple.