Tourist Trapped in Northern Ireland

All aboard the Paddywagon! (sort of... lol)

August 11, 2019

For our last weekend day in Ireland, we woke up extremely early, before the sun even rose, to do the ultimate tourist trap tour to Northern Ireland. I think if I had known what to expect, I would have enjoyed this a LOT more (or perhaps even opted out hahaha).


We ran around Dublin seeking out the PaddyWagon Bus and barely found it because their location listed on Google Maps didn’t match up. Despite having pre-booked this trip, we were lucky because we were the last two to make it on the bus. They literally oversold the seats, yikes! (Though in hindsight, we just might have given up ours!)

We drove for four hours… First stop: The Dark Hedges. This location is apparently some famous film set, Game of Thrones, I think? I’m not sure, I didn’t watch it. They were cool, but honestly, for US, not worth the extra diversion.

Then we made it to the Carrick-a-Rede bridge, which once again we got super lucky and got the last two tickets for. They did not have enough tickets for everyone on the bus either! They literally drove some poor people out, and they didn’t even make it on! 


The bridge itself was actually super cool, but luckily those people didn’t miss out too much because it was just a bridge, and the views all around the area were just GORGEOUS! 


Then we drove out to the famous Giant’s Causeway, a unique geological formation, which was filled to the brim with tourists. You could still kind of get your own space, but I would recommend visiting this on a DIY basis. The tour buses just overcrowd this place!

Before leaving the area, we also stopped by a castle; we got to look at it for a couple of minutes before hopping back in and heading to Belfast where we didn’t actually have time to do anything. At all. We spent the entire time looking for a lookout they gave bad directions for and then turned our efforts towards finding a restroom instead. Then had to get right back on the bus. Guess we’ll have to come back one day instead.

Overall, we did not really think the tour was worth it. It was a LOT of time driving, and we felt rushed at every spot. We would have rather gone out to see 1-2 spots and had more time. BUT lesson learned – go on your own or know to fully embrace the cheesy tour! 🙂


After our adventure-filled weekend, we spent the rest of the week enjoying food (seriously, the strawberries here are insane!) and relaxing because there isn’t actually much to do in Dublin proper… and we have work in the evenings, so we can’t do much other than hang around town.

Yesterday, we took a day trip out to Howth, a little fishing town about an hour from Dublin with trails along the coast and on a peninsula. This was one of my favorite things we did while here. We stumbled upon the cutest town, one of the oldest churches/cemeteries in the country, and then we walked over 10 miles of beautiful and very windy trails along the coastline, many covered in wild berries and beautiful blooms of summer flowers, before heading back to town. We woke up at 4 am this morning to catch a flight to our next destination!

Check back soon!

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