Mid-June 2017, clear sky with temperature at 26 degrees. Irish people were having their best summer day of the year. All the train stations were packed with thousands of commuters traveling to the nearest park or beach to enjoy this quite rare and unexpected weather.
For those who don't know much about Ireland, here's an insight for you: Ireland is a gorgeous land, filled with super friendly people, rich culture and powerful landscapes. However, Ireland is also known for its crazy and unpredictable climate. Whenever the sun comes out so does everybody else in the country.
I’ve spent my whole Monday packing for my little trip to Howth. My destination has grown from a small fishing village to an impressive suburb, crammed with big and majestic houses, boats anchored along the bay and wild natural beauty. It is also home to one of the oldest occupied buildings in Ireland, the Howth – what were the odds? - Castle.
The traffic was pretty intense. The community was overcrowded by the thousands of sun-chasers, forming this sea of people whenever you look at. The atmosphere was already electrifying since we have hardly ever got to experience outdoor friendly days like this one.
The village is breathtaking from every perspective. It's famously known for its trail along the cliff, circulating the whole peninsula - the Cliff Walk – an exciting path, crowded with tourists and locals, all trying to capture every bit of sunshine with their cameras and phones.
Right at the beginning of the track I spotted some teenagers having a blast. They were all bathing in the cold Irish Sea, jumping off cliffs into formidable splashes. I couldn't believe how brave they were to jump into the freezing ocean. I had to see it up close. As I tried to reach out for the group I found out that the adjacent trail to the cliffs, where they were jumping off, it wasn't as easy as the main one. I was battling my way through the wild vegetation, when I finally spotted a staircase, leading to the rocks at the lower level. But, for my surprise, the staircase was disjointed; half of it was still hanging off the ledge and the other half was lying on the ground.
The Cliff Walk's shortest trail doesn't take longer than 2 hours to get crossed. The longest walk, all the way around the peninsula takes from 4 to 5 hours. As I wasn’t feeling so adventurous that day, I opted for the shorter one and took the time to click my camera shutter to exhaustion.
Back to the village, I headed straight to my favorite spot - the town’s old radio station, located at the top of this small hill, right at the center of the village. Surrounding it, there's a large grassy area, this perfectly peaceful place to have lunch or to relax reading a book.
So, if someone asks me “Why visit Ireland?”, I’ve decided I wouldn’t struggle no more to give an accurate yet edifying answer. I’d probably say that Ireland doesn’t rest on its laurels, but takes to the next level the combination of an urban contemporary site and an overwhelming wilderness scenario. If some say the Irish are lucky, why not getting to know what they are all about? You won’t be disappointed.
Here's a incredible video made by the talented videographer Carlos Cases: