Out for a walk beside the Ottawa River in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada!
Where are Kevin and Ruth now? Ottawa, Ontario, Canada.

Where are Kevin and Ruth going next? Heading to Nova Scotia around August 1st.

Friday, June 30, 2023

June Expenses - higher than budget!

We spent the entire month of June touring Ireland in our motorhome, other than the five days we were housesitting north of Dublin.

At the end of May, we told you that our budget for the month of June was a paltry $1,490 CAD (€1,032, $1,125 USD). 

While the budget was ambitious, it actually would have been under that if not for four different unexpected large expenses!

Not exactly what we had planned!

We got up and drove right away at 6:30am Thursday morning, and when I fired up Max a warning light came on that said the pressure was low in the left front tire.

I thought "that's odd", because I had only checked and topped up the pressure in all tires two days before. 

Thursday, June 29, 2023

Trying to figure a plan!

Well, it looks like we're definitely going to have a visitor in August. We haven't booked it yet, but we think we've devised a plan to have grandson Cameron (12) come and tour some of Europe with his grandma and grandpa.

Most of the logistical problems relate to the fact that they live near Halifax, Nova Scotia and there aren't many direct flights from Halifax to anywhere across the pond. He can only fly direct to either London, or Frankfurt.

Wednesday, June 28, 2023

I think we must be approaching a record number of beautiful, free overnight spots!

Regular readers know that we don't use campgrounds very often, especially when they are as expensive as they are here in Ireland. Max is self sufficient, and we don't have the need for all the services a campground offers. 

Plus, Ireland offers so many gorgeous free overnight possibilities!

Tuesday, June 27, 2023

There are three defibrillators along the route...

Not much in the way of sunshine yesterday, but we still got out for another big uphill climb without getting too wet!

When we had climbed Diamond Hill the day before, we had been talking to a local lady who said we should also climb Clough Patrick... Ireland's Holy Mountain. Nora, whose driveway we stayed in had also mentioned this hike to us so we thought we had better include it too providing the weather was good.

Monday, June 26, 2023

We had a busy day, with photos to prove it...

Lots of photos!

Our first stop was the town of Clifden, but the parking situation on a Sunday morning wasn't the best for motorhomes. We ended up doing a little grocery shopping at the local Lidl, and moving on to Clifden Castle and not really seeing the town at all. 

But, we would rather spend our time walking around the countryside than walking around a town anyhow.

Sunday, June 25, 2023

On our way to Clifden, but we never made it

Clifden is supposed to be a picturesque little tourist town surrounded by breathtaking scenery. Sounds great, so we were on our way there but we got sidetracked... by the breathtaking scenery along the way!

Partly our fault though because we didn't get on the road until around 11:00am.

Saturday, June 24, 2023

Friday evening out at the pub

It kind of drizzled on and off all day, and we didn't leave the motorhome until about 8:00pm in the evening!

But, we were due for a relaxing day of doing nothing... and there's nothing wrong with that every now and again. I got caught up on some internet stuff, and got our ferry to Wales booked.

Friday, June 23, 2023

A beautiful day in Galway, and now doing some driveway camping!

It was a gorgeous sunny day yesterday here in western Ireland! 

Wednesday night, we had been parked a few miles east of the city of Galway. I found us a good free parking spot just north of the city, but it would mean a 3.5 km walk just to get to the central area. But with hardly a cloud in the sky, we decided that was our best option.

Thursday, June 22, 2023

Travel planning and the weather

As full time travelers, we do a lot of our planning around the weather. The ideal for us is to have shorts and t-shirt type of weather with daily high temperatures between 18C and 25C (64F to 77F).

The problem for us is that we also want to visit countries that are outside of those parameters! So we sometimes have to bite the bullet and put up with temperatures or weather conditions that are less than ideal.

Wednesday, June 21, 2023

Cliffs of Moher, part 2

Up and on the road early again, and we drove right away into the touristy town of Doolin. Every second building is a bed and breakfast or hotel or guesthouse. 

Doolin is the starting point if you want to walk to the Cliffs of Moher from the north heading south. It's also where the ferries set off from if you want to visit the Aran Islands.

Tuesday, June 20, 2023

The Cliffs of Moher. Worth a visit, however...

There's a beautiful walking trail at the Cliffs of Moher, but the challenge is finding free parking at what has become a very popular and touristy natural attraction.

But we are resourceful, and we don't mind walking!

Monday, June 19, 2023

From one graveyard to the next

Sunday morning, we hung around the graveyard for a while. It was such a nice peaceful spot. A local farmer walked by with his dog and was tending to a herd of cows across the road. Ruth went out and spoke to him, and he apologized if his cows bothered us in the night!

Really nice guy, and we had a good chat with him. Everybody we meet here in Ireland is so cheerful.

Sunday, June 18, 2023

We met Max two years ago today!

We were reminded this morning that today is our second anniversary with Max. He has been a great travel companion, so I thought we should show some of our highlights with Max over the past two years.

We picked him up in Dulmen, Germany on June 18, 2021 right in the middle of the Covid pandemic. 

Boy, did we ever get dumped on!

Well, we managed to do 90 kms (54 miles) worth of driving yesterday, but it still feels like we didn't get very far. 

We started off heading to the beach town of Ballybunion where there are some colorful cliffs and sea caves that we wanted to see. We didn't check the tide schedule beforehand, and simply got lucky... the tide was all the way out!

Saturday, June 17, 2023

I figured I had better go get this looked at

Long time readers will remember when we had our eye surgery in Turkiye. Time flies, because believe it or not that was two and a half years ago!

And for that period, we have been totally happy with our eyes. Well, until a few weeks ago I noticed that one eye was a bit funny. 

Friday, June 16, 2023

Gorgeous scenery

We figured we had better get a move on if we're going to make it around Ireland and back to Dublin by the middle of next month. We've already decided that our onward travels on this particular trip won't include Scotland. It would just be too rushed for us.

Instead, we're going to make our way back to Dublin by mid July and take the ferry from there to Holyhead, Wales. 

Thursday, June 15, 2023

The most westerly point in Ireland

We woke up yesterday morning to heavy fog. It's kind of pointless doing a scenic coastal drive under those conditions, so we did the short drive into the town of Dingle and parked at the local Lidl grocery store and waited for the 8:00am opening.

We did some grocery shopping (once again, cheaper than we expected it to be) and sat out the fog until we noticed it starting to burn off around 10:00am.

Wednesday, June 14, 2023

Made it to the Dingle Peninsula

I was looking at some of our website statistics the other day, and noticed that 35% of our readers use a mobile phone to access Travel with Kevin and Ruth. That's higher than I thought it would be. Given that, I thought I would pass along a little tip.

When you visit us on a desktop or laptop, you see the full version with the nice header picture. But when you visit us on a smartphone, you will typically see the abbreviated "mobile" version.

Tuesday, June 13, 2023

Tough hike to the highest point in Ireland!

We got up at 6:30am and drove the narrow single lane road up to the parking area for the hike up Carrauntoohil... the highest mountain in Ireland.

We had our breakfast at the parking area, then packed our backpacks and set off at about 8:20am. We had read that the 12 km (7.5 mile) hike would take between six to eight hours.

Monday, June 12, 2023

We're going to get an early start and go for it!

We got up at 6:30am Sunday morning, and the first thing we did was to drive the short distance to the parking area at the Gap of Dunloe. It's a popular spot, and we wanted to make sure we had somewhere to park Max, especially on a Sunday when it would likely be busy.

And the plan came together just like that. We got a good parking spot for Max, and yes it did become busy!

Sunday, June 11, 2023

Hiking up Torc Mountain, Ireland

When we were in the parking lot for Torc Waterfall the other day, I had seen a trail leading up Torc Mountain. We didn't have time to do it then, but decided to return yesterday to do the hike.

Weather conditions weren't great... but we needed some exercise! The temperature was pleasant, but there was some wind and it was overcast, although there was no rain to speak of in the forecast.

Saturday, June 10, 2023

The trails are absolutely beautiful

First stop of the day was to head up to the parking lot for Torc Waterfall. From there, several trails lead in various directions. Most of them seemed pretty quiet, but there were quite a few people on the short waterfall trail. 

You can stay overnight at the waterfall parking lot, but there is no cellular access.

Friday, June 9, 2023

The Rock of Cashel, and on to Killarney National Park

One of our facebook fans mentioned yesterday that it's hard to absorb the ages of some of these ancient buildings. Being from Canada, where an old building might be 200 years, we are always amazed when we are in structures that are maybe 800 years old. It's truly hard to comprehend. After all, we were taught in school that history began when Christopher Columbus "discovered" America in 1492!

I remember the first time this really sunk in. We were in a big church in Czechia that was built around the year 1100. I mean, we had been in old buildings in England quite a few times before, but this was when I really started thinking about it.

Thursday, June 8, 2023

Glad we made a stop at Cashel, Ireland!

We headed out at exactly 10:00am. First stop was at a Tesco Extra grocery store where we did a bunch of shopping, then arrived at the checkout to find they didn't want our business.

Tesco has a "Club Card" where you get fairly big discounts on some products. The card is free, so just about anybody shopping there would have one. You'd be crazy not to. 

Wednesday, June 7, 2023

Insider tour of an Irish dairy farm

Our break here at the house sitting is now over, and we're ready to hit the road again this morning. We're going to head fairly quickly down to the southern part of the west coast, and pretty much resume where we left off... back on the Wild Atlantic Way.

Our first plan when we get there is to go to Killarney National Park and do some hiking. 

Tuesday, June 6, 2023

Ireland is very tidy!

Well, our time here at the house sit is going by quickly. One more night, and we're back on the road!

Max is all cleaned up. We just have to put everything back in its place, make the bed, and he's ready to go. Our hosts will be back here this afternoon sometime, and Ruth is making dinner for everyone this evening. 

Monday, June 5, 2023

Living like normal people

While we love living and traveling in Max, house sitting and looking after someone's dog or cat gives us the opportunity to live like normal people, with access to normal shower and a washing machine. And given the price of doing laundry here in Ireland, we had kind of saved up in the dirty clothes department. 

It also gives us a chance to do a deep clean on Max. While Ruth spent a good chunk of the day doing laundry, I emptied out Max's storage area and vacuumed and wiped it out. Then with access to a ladder and a supply of water, I got up on the roof and gave it a good scrub.

Sunday, June 4, 2023

On our own with Juno the dog

We had a late night, so the family all straggled down for breakfast at various times. A hairdresser showed up and did the ladies hair because of course they were all off to a wedding. So, a busy morning around here.

And, another beautiful blue sky day!

Saturday, June 3, 2023

Arrived at our house sitting and met Juno the dog

The morning started off cloudy and overcast, and a little cool. But by lunchtime the sunshine arrived and it became another beautiful day here in Ireland.

We drove about twenty minutes to arrive at our house sit out in the countryside. We're only about 30 kms (18 miles) north of the center of Dublin as the crow flies, and yet we're totally out in the country.

Friday, June 2, 2023

Exciting news!

Regular readers will remember this past January when we headed to the rarely visited country of Mauritania and rode the iron ore train through the Sahara Desert.

Well back in March, we signed up for another crazy trip to another rarely visited country. Received word this morning that it's definitely a go, and provided we're approved for the visa and permits (which looks likely) then we are off to Turkmenistan in October!

Thursday, June 1, 2023

Portrane Cliff Walk

We did a long drive of about 14 kms (8 miles) yesterday! Just for a change of scenery, really. Although, I had read of a cliff walk path that looked interesting.

Yet another gorgeous day. All of these beautiful days are starting to make weather news here in Ireland because it's rare to have such a stretch of them. And they are expected to continue for at least another week.