We've planned this trip for over a year. "We" being my sister-in-law, Kelly, and my mother-in-law, Linda. You'll get to know them well in the upcoming posts. Kelly graduated with her masters this Spring, so this was her big Hurrah! before starting a job. I've always wanted to travel throughout Europe, but Kyle has zero interest, so this worked out perfectly. People tend to be really surprised that I would travel with my "in-laws," (oh the horror!), but we are all really close. My family is the same way with Kyle. We're all family. So, for us, it's not that weird ;) And trust me, after all of the events from this trip, we're all a bit closer- for better or worse!


So, now that you've gotten the skinny on the trip, welcome to Girls Vaca 2013!


I'll just throw it there right now: I love Ireland. I love it love it love it. But, to be fair, it's sort of my homeland so I knew it wouldn't disappoint me.



Now that my love has been shouted from the proverbial rooftops, let's talk about a bit of our time there. We landed in Dublin on Saturday morning and had just enough time to check into out hotel, wash our faces and head out the door. Before arriving, we had emailed a few bike companies asking for private tours, and one was able to help. Sean, our new bestie.
We biked the city for about 3 hours. Don't let my lackadaisical words fool you, it was anything but. At least at first. However, once our tired brains got the hang of the traffic flow, and understood that buses have no issue with possibly running you over, the bike ride went much smoother and offered everything we hoped it would: an overview of a big city, a way to get our bearings, a quick view of the big "must-sees," a local to chat with and get inside information, and of course, some exercise after a long flight :)

The only bad thing about it was they made us wear these vests. NERD ALERT:



Dublin was much smaller and manageable than I had expected a big city to be. Everything seemed relatively close and easy to get to. Most of the pictures I captured in Dublin happened on our bike ride, so bare with the blue vests and helmets that scream "TOURIST!!"




Our matching outfits were not planned. But I must say, our shoes coordinate very well together and look awfully cute in photographs.



Our time in Dublin was spent venturing throughout the city (on foot, not bike), exploring the shopping districts, the river, Temple Bar, Trinity and discovering hidden gems of restaurants.

But of course, what Dublin visit would be complete without visiting St. Patricks:






Or Trinity, which was nicely located next to our hotel:




Or witnessing the ruckus that Temple Bar offers:




Let's jump back to the hotel for one moment, shall we. Ours echoed Alice in Wonderland:




I'll get to my absolute favorite thing about Ireland tomorrow- it involves a 13 hour road trip of the best kind. Of course it'll be all about the countryside, castles and the coast. My heart be still.



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