After only 3 days of diving in Kinsale, in 2015, I could hardly wait to get back on board of the Embarr, to continue exploring marine treasures of the Celtic Sea. Matt Wills, my dive-buddy, expressed unequivocal desire to come along, and, after short collaboration, we’ve decided to dive one week in Ireland and the following 6 days in the east of the Scotland.
Right from the beginning, I want to express my deepest appreciation to Anne Ferguson, the “better part” of the husband-wife team that owns and manages OceanAddicts operation, for working with us very closely while we were “building” our tour. And as the result, her suggestion helped us to substantially reduce the financial burden of this trip.
First, we flew Boston to Shannon, arriving in Ireland at 6 am. We picked up a car and got to Kinsale on 23rd of July.
July 30th, we drove to Cork, dropped the car at the airport and flew to Glasgow, where we pre-booked another rental. It took us about 2 hours to drive to Marine Quest, located in Eyemouth of Berwickshire.
August 7th, we returned the car at Glasgow airport, boarded a plane at 11:30 am and landed in Dublin an hour and thirty minutes later. We departed Ireland at 4:20 pm and arrived in Boston at 6 pm.
Does one need a car? Having a car incurs additional spending and responsibilities. For instance, in both countries gas sold by liters and prices per gallon, in euros, as well as in British pounds in Scotland, are way higher than in the US (at the time of our travel, we paid $4.75 p/g in Ireland and $5.72 p/g in Scotland). Therefore, if you decide to get a car, try to book a diesel-fueled vehicle, diesel is cheaper than gas and yields better mileage.
And besides that in Ireland and in Scotland you’ll have to drive in the left lane, many secondary roads are so narrow, that often it seems utterly impossible to share your constricted pass with a speeding towards you vehicle.
Typical width of the two-way road
Naturally, Anne had offered to transfer us from Shannon to the Embarr for a very fair price. And, by the way, from Embarr to the Cork she wasn’t going to charge us at all. But, for a bit more money, we had a greater freedom to experience way more than 2+ hours straightforward ride from Shannon to Kinsale.
As it happened, on our way to OceanAddicts, Matt and I stopped by at Dingle Pottery, drove through the Connor Pass, tasted Irish lager at Crean’s Brewery, ate at Inch Beach, visited the largest Toy Soldier Factory and learned about other beautiful places that we wouldn’t want to miss. At Kinsale, since all restaurants are within a short walking distance from the Embarr, we did not use the car very much, and yet we found time to explore neighboring towns settled along absolutely stunning shores of southern Ireland.