This weekend I went for the second time to one of my favorite areas here in Ireland – the Dingle Peninsula – and this time I was in the most westerly settlement of the country: Dún Chaoin, anglicised as Dunquin. A small village in west County Kerry where the Irish language is still widely used. It lies at the Western tip of the Dingle Peninsula, overlooking the Blasket Islands.
Dunquin has been shaped over thousands of years by relentless Atlantic rollers, and the ferocious winds which drive them onto the shores. I spent around 45 minutes around there and experienced sun, rain and storm. All worthy! The view from the cliff top at Dunquin is quite breathtaking, and Dunquin Harbour itself is almost frightening as its narrow concrete path descends precariously down the cliff face to sea level below.
In 1588, when the Spanish Armada returned via Ireland many ships sought shelter in the Blasket Sound — the area between Dunquin and the Islands — and some were wrecked there. A memorial stands on the cliffs overlooking the site.