What measures 215 meters high and 8 kilometers long? What is so spectacular that thousands of visitors gaze upon it daily? Why, it’s the Cliffs of Moher on the western coast of Ireland!
Located in County Clare, the Cliffs of Moher are considered by many as one of the seven natural wonders of the world. After our first visit, I couldn’t agree more. The panoramic views here are awe-inspiring and on a clear day, the Aran Islands are visible.
The crashing waves below the cliffs have caused many, like myself, to suffer vertigo. However, this did not stop me from getting as close as possible to the edge just to see how far down the cliff walls extended.
We visited here on a day trip from Shannon the day before we were scheduled to fly home. In hindsight, this was not a smart move. For many visitors, this once-in-a-lifetime visit is often plagued with uncooperative weather. We were extremely lucky. Mother Nature smiled upon us that day.
Traveling here is fairly easy. The roads are well signed and there is plenty of parking. Visiting the cliffs is free but if you are traveling by car, there are paid lots. We arrived late in the day (3 pm), which was a good thing since the tour buses began to leave as we arrived.
The parking lot is across the street from the new state-of-the-art visitor center that is literally built into a hillside. Definitely take some time to view this center either before or after seeing the cliffs. We chose to visit after since the cliffs are literally right in front of you after crossing the street with its breathtaking beauty enticing the visitor to gaze upon her.
Much of the cliffs around the visitor center are walled to keep visitors safe. However, there are miles of hiking paths to the left and right that perilously hug the cliffs’ edges.
Next to the visitor center is O’Brien’s Tower, a small castle with panoramic views of the cliffs where visitors can climb to the top. Some in our party chose to do this climb. I had my share of climbing winding spiral staircases in Ireland so I opted to stay below. The view from the top was good, according to our friends. However, they did complain about the crowds at the top and the difficulty of seeing over the turrets.
My favorite part of our visit was the chance to just sit and gaze out at the Atlantic Ocean. Mother Nature is truly magnificent and her beauty in this part of the world can’t be topped. If Ireland is on your bucket list, make sure you add a visit to this magical location.