The Paddywagon


Look, Pattie - its the Paddywagon!

It’s where the paddy’s at!

Bad joke, sorry.

On our second day in Ireland, we decided to venture up to Northern Ireland on a Paddywagon bus tour. I was excited to see Dublin, but more than anything else I wanted to see green Ireland. And our tour was filled with sunny skies, green grass, white cliffs and blue waters – it was everything I wanted it to be!

Our Paddywagon bus driver/tour guide John sang us an Irish tune. Just listen to that accent! WATCH

Our first stop was the Carrick-a-Rede Rope Bridge. Once I stepped off the bus and took a good look around I couldn’t believe how beautiful everything was. The sky was so clear we could even see Scotland! This bus tour was the best decision we made on our Ireland trip.

Then it was on to Giant’s Causeway! I was super super excited about this part of the trip. All the pictures I had seen online of the causeway were amazing, but really – as cliche as it sounds – pictures don’t even do the area justice. I can’t believe how beautiful everything is here. And big – the cliffs just seem to go on forever!

After all this, we stopped to see a castle, or rather half a castle; apparently the other half fell into the ocean. The castle was built in the 1200s.

Our last stop on the tour was Derry. The town itself wasn’t terribly interesting, but we did get caught in a rainstorm and wound up completely soaked for our journey home. But that’s ok – we woke up at 5:45 am that morning so the bus home was just one long nap.

Visiting Northern Ireland has motivated me to take more scenic trips rather than sightseeing trips. I wish I had known before how much I would love Ireland and planned another trip to a different Irish town. I definitely, definitely want to go back!



Also known as Publin. Also known as the Land Where Men Wear Sweatpants on Dates.

Huh? Yes, it’s true ladies and gentlemen: the menfolk of Dublin love their sweatpants – and even worse, their sweatsuits. Everywhere we went, I saw an Irish lad in his baggy bottomed pants. Maybe you’re thinking, “But Jess, maybe they were all just on their way to the gym!” Nope. Too many dudes in sweatsuits for this to be true. Sweatpants must just be in all over Dublin. Does this mean the Irish ladies have low standards?

Aside from spot sweatpants from a distance, what else does one do in Dublin?

We arrived early Saturday morning to bright, sunny skies and I immediately knew I was going to like Ireland when I saw their passport stamp is green. Country of leprechauns, guys. After dropping off our bags in the creepiest luggage facilities I have ever seen (see photo evidence below), we ventured off to the Dublin attractions.

Note: The creepiness of this basement luggage room does not reflect the quality of the hostel. The basement was scary but the rest was normal. So stop freaking out, Mom.

Locker room. Dun dun dun!!

Grafton Street - filled with music, shopping and food.

On Grafton Street, we stumbled across this guy: watch.

St. Patrick's Cathedral

Jonathan Swift's grave in Saint Patrick's Cathedral

St. Stephen's Green

Christ Church Cathedral

When heading over to the Dublin Castle I had pretty low expectations. Everyone else I know who had gone to Dublin earlier said the castle was kind of a letdown. However, I was bound and determined to at least give the castle a chance.

Wait... that's a castle? Yes. Yes it is.

That's more like it! This is the castle's more medieval-looking cathedral.

Castle gets a funky look from behind.

Plus what?

Dublin at night

Mmmmm food - just some goat cheese, red peppers and pesto. Just a lot of nomz.