Thursday, June 27, 2013

UK (Part 6)


June 27, 2013 7:20 PM—Portrush, Northern Ireland

Last night I took my final ferry ride of my trip and apparently I must have done something right. When I arrived at the ferry all I had was a ticket to get on. I didn't have a cabin. I hadn't booked one in order to save a bit of money, but when I thought about all my other night ferries, I realized it wasn't worth the money I was saving. So when I got on the ship I inquired about getting a cabin. I was offered an inside or an outside cabin (outside has a window). After going back and forth with the woman (who seemed a bit mixed up with the prices), I had a key but I wasn't real sure whether the room was inside or outside. When I got in my room, I found out it was outside. So I had a window. This is the first ferry where I've had a cabin with a window. The room also had four beds in the room and wi-fi! I really felt like I was living.



The ferry arrived in Belfast at around 9:30 AM and when I got off I had to get a cab to the train station, because it was the only way to get there. As much as I didn't like doing this, it would have been a 4 mile walk in the rain. When I arrived at the train station I got a ticket to Portrush and got on my way. The train only took about an hour and a half and it left me about a 10 minute walk from my hotel. Unfortunately, it was still raining. But, nonetheless, I hike down to my hotel. Portrush is a sleepy little town and it is based around a small peninsula. My hotel is on this peninsula. This is one of the few places where I sprung for a nice hotel. My room has 2 beds (sleeping space for 3 people), it's own bathroom (with a bath tub), and a sea view!


The view from my window

Once I got to my hotel, I was able to get into my room right away, despite the fact that it was only about 12 PM. So I dropped my stuff and got on my way. I took the bus to Giant's Causeway first. Giant's Causeway is a natural phenomenon. It is a rock formation on the coast that seems anything but natural. The rocks fit together like a puzzle, where they fit together like a ball and socket creating pillars of sorts. Along with the rock formation, the locals have come up with a myth about a giant who lived there. They even identify some of the rocks as the giant's everyday items.







The giant's boot




After Giant's Causeway, I got back on the bus and went to Carrick-a-Rede. This is where there is a rope bridge that you can cross to get to a small island. This bridge would have been used by fisherman back in the day to better catch salmon. Now it is a simple thrill seeking activities for tourists. Today being quite windy makes it that much more exciting. It's not something you would ever really fall off of, but it can be intimidating for the faint of heart. I was fine crossing except when the wind really kicked up. But I just kept thinking of that guy who walked across the grand canyon on a tight rope. If he could do that despite the wind, I knew I could walk across this rope bridge. Besides just the bridge there were also some fantastic views from this part of the coast. Although, unfortunately, because it was a somewhat nasty day, visibility was a bit limited.







Once I was crossed the rope bridge (Twice!), I got the bus back to Portrush. I'm not quite sure what I'm going to do tomorrow, because what I had planned to do I already did today. Nonetheless, I'm here in Northern Ireland until Saturday, when I'm traveling down to Dublin, which is my last stop on this trip. 

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