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The Cliffs of Heck

Ireland has some immensely spectacular scenery, without question. The problem is, everybody knows it. Trying to see the popular sights during the summer months means elbowing your way through hordes of tourists to get a proper view.

The Cliffs of Moher is one of the most famous spots on the island. The bluffs are over 200 metres high and stretch for 8 miles against the Atlantic Coast. Upon first sight, we stood motionless with mouths agape, and emphatically uttered only one, single syllable:

 

Wow.

 

The Cliffs of Moher, Ireland

And then some tall sweaty guy with a mullet walked in front of us and broke our gaze.  Of course.

I can’t say that tourists are ruining everything, because hey, we are two of them. But waiting several minutes for the path to clear in order to snap a few photos is not my idea of a perfect travel experience.

But alas, we did it anyways. The place is popular for a reason – our reaction at first sight is definitely not unique – and so we waited patiently for our chance.  Even the path over the fence into do-not-go-here territory was well trodden.

 

O’Briens Castle, and just a few of the gazillion tourists, in the distance.

Tourists line the Cliffs of Moher


Pete “safely” going to the edge of the cliffs in the do-not-go-here territory (he is a wee bit scared of heights).

Looking Out

 

My foot over the edge of the cliff.  This picture freaks Pete out every time he looks at it.

Over the Edge

 

We ultimately did enjoy our time there, but came away nonplussed with the size of the crowds. It was impossible to have that perfect, peaceful moment of connecting with the beauty of nature with so many people around.

We were missing something. We craved that moment. And so, a little further down the road, we made another stop on the coast, and claimed it as our own.

 

I give you…The Cliffs of Heck!

 

The Burren aka Cliffs of Heck

 

Okay, so maybe they don’t have the dramatic heights of the Cliffs of Moher, but we didn’t care, for an hour they were completely ours to explore and enjoy with no one else in sight (and no mullets to distract our view).

 

That is just what we needed. 

 

Waves Crash

 

66 Comments (Add Yours)

  1. That looks lovely there! It’s tricky when you really want to visit a place that gets crowded. Smart move to go down the road a bit! I love the foot shot, btw…. :)
    Lisa @chickybus recently posted..Curse of the Eclipse…or Survivor, San Blas? Episode 1

  2. Haha, I completely understand where you are coming from. My husband and I are currently in the Black Forest and one sunny afternoon we went to a nearby small village that is supposed to have a great view…only to find hordes of other tourists (both German and International) doing the same thing! It was a bit surprising, seeing the droves of people come to hike up a hill and see the view. I enjoy your Cliffs of Heck!
    Danalynn C recently posted..7 Things I Learned at a German Helpx

  3. This is one of the visions of Ireland I’ve always had. In must’ve been so beautiful, especially on a summer day. And though its not of the The Cliffs of Moher, I do like the last photo best of Pete commanding the ocean :)

  4. omg lady, you’re foot! I’m with Pete.

    I took photos of the Golden Gate Bridge on Monday, I can relate. Luckily, I’m pretty tall, and when I stood up on my toes I was able to take pictures and see things without any heads in my view, haha.
    Faith recently posted..Location Independent-Digital Nomad: What the Heck Do You Do for Money?

  5. Awesome post and wonderful photos. I’ve never been to Ireland and that place looks absolutely great. I guess you’ve been really lucky to get such a sunny day! :-)
    Simon recently posted..A Rush of Adrenaline… Skydiving in the World Largest Wind Tunnel

  6. Aaaahhh!!! Get your foot back on the ground!
    It’s very beautiful, yet it doesn’t look all that crowded from the pictures. I’m guessing the places I can see in the pictures aren’t the places you want to be to get a great picture?
    I’ll place the Cliffs of Heck on my “must see” list now, although perhaps a little lower down than the Cliffs of Moher.
    Steve recently posted..The Time I Was In An Earthquake…Kind Of….I Think….

    • Haha – I wasn’t actually *that* close to the cliffs…it’s alllll in how I took the shot! It’s fun to freak Pete out with it! We didn’t take too many pictures of all the tourists, trying to turn our camera in other ways!

      I can’t tell you where to go to see The Cliffs of Heck – it is THAT exclusive. And, I don’t remember. :)

  7. OMG, Picture of Pete is EPIC! SO loving this.
    Katrina recently posted..Elements of Air: Rose of Tralee “SkyFest” Airshow

  8. The age-old travel problem…Wanting to be a tourist without other tourists ;) Lovely post.

  9. I’m with Pete, the photo of your foot dangling off is scary! The cliffs were not nearly crowded in late December when I was there. The weather was not nearly as nice either. ;-)
    Mark E Tisdale recently posted..You Are Not Your Social Network

  10. Ugh, tourists. Even when I’m a tourist I can’t help but annoy myself a little. I think it just comes with the territory.
    Christy @ Technosyncratic recently posted..A Canal Ride through Central London

  11. OH MY GOD! My toes, stomach and pretty much my entire body are still tingling over that “foot over cliff” photo, even after finishing reading the post! Jeez you’re crazy!

  12. DALENE !!!!!!!!!!!!!! That pic of your foot over the cliff made my stomach churn. Loved the “Heck” cliffs.

  13. I’m a wee bit scared of heights and that photo totally freaked me out too, Dalene! When we were there it was so ridiculously windy that if we got that close we would have been blown off. Seriously. I have to say, the Cliffs of Moher were nice but I wasn’t blown away. The tourists probably had something to do with that. So I’m loving the Cliffs of Heck ;) And that last photo – brilliant!
    Andrea recently posted..Tasting Vienna at the Outdoor Film Festival

    • We tried a hike near Bantry today and it was SO windy that we had to turn back before getting to the part where we would walk cliffside. It gets crazy windy here! Fortunately it was only “breezy” when we were at the Cliffs.

  14. I regret to inform you that those are NOT the Cliffs of Heck. Everyone knows that they are the “Cliffs of Maur.”

    I claimed them 5 years again when I was in Ireland experiencing the very same thing.

    Thank you for the the opportunity to set the record straight.
    Maureen at Vaco-Vitae recently posted..Sometimes, you just need the quiet

  15. Great foot shot! I remember lying down on my stomach in the no go zone and sliding out so I just got my camera, head and arms over to take a straight down cliff shot. Didn’t turn out nearly as well as yours :-)

    Here’s hoping the rest of your Emerald Isle journey is mullet-free.

  16. WOW was my first reaction at the Cliffs of Moher, too. Although there were plenty of tourists there on my visit, it wasn’t too bad. What I really remember is the fierce wind that nearly knocked me off my feet. Pretty exciting, actually. Congratulations on finding your own little piece of Ireland. :-)
    Cathy Sweeney recently posted..Nevada on the Rocks

  17. Pete, that photo also freaks me out! Your pictures are beautiful — even the one with the tourists. ;-)
    Abby recently posted..Do You Recognize This Man?

  18. you two are hilarious!
    “And then some tall sweaty guy with a mullet walked in front of us and broke our gaze.”
    and then the photo at the end! that was like picture perfect with the spray and his arms like that! haha
    I missed the Cliffs of Moher when I was there! I’ll say it again “I need to go back!” :)
    Cailin recently posted..Top ten tips for attending & surviving La Tomatina Tomato fight

  19. Seriously, the picture with your foot made me feel sick. Are you crazy?
    Natalie recently posted..Ramadan – An Outsiders Experience of the Islamic Month of Fasting

  20. Umm yes, definitely too close to the edge, I know it’s pretty dangerous…
    Angela recently posted..A trip, a photo – Blue from my window

  21. I think I took more pics of the horrible hairstyles at the Cliffs of Moher than the actual cliffs. I actually went to these “Cliffs of Heck” as well :)

  22. Looking forward to the edition “the (wind)mills of Heck” ;-)!

  23. That picture freaks me out too!!!! Yikes. Lovely photos though.
    Phil recently posted..Putting your African Adventure to Shame: Kilimanjaro by Lionback

  24. hahahaha that last photo is hilarious and awesome!! And you are CRAZY for sticking your foot out and snapping that photo. …crazy or with bad ass balancing skills. (obviously you can tell I’m scared of heights, too)
    Erin recently posted..Happy Mother’s Day, 4 More Earthquakes, and Hello Rain!

    • she says she has bad ass balancing skills, but I know for a fact she doesn’t. She trips walking on flat concrete (I’m gonna get an arm punch for that one). The last photo took a lot of patience and me standing in that pose for a few minutes.

  25. I would have been right there with you — foot dangling and all! And nice that you find your own little piece of mullet-free heaven!
    Raymond @ Man On The Lam recently posted..Travel Photo of the Week — Lahu Hill Tribe Women, Mae Hong Son, Thailand

  26. Wow indeed! But too bad it was so crowded. I love that you found a more secluded spot and claimed it as your own!

    I did not see the Cliffs of Moher in Ireland, but I did go over to Inishmore, which also has some really spectacular sea cliffs (that are basically devoid of tourists most of the time)!
    Amanda recently posted..Guest Post: Off-the-Tourist Track Italy

  27. Beautiful photos. That picture of your foot and the reality of it would definitely freak me out as well – as I am quite afraid of heights. But wow is it amazing scenery!
    Mark Wiens recently posted..Photo Favorite: Macau, through its Window

  28. amazing pictures
    Zablon Mukuba recently posted..Volunteer in Africa

  29. The lack of mullets is a serious selling point. Now, I’m off to find the Cliffs of Etten!

  30. Nice footwear Dalene!
    And I can’t stand mullets either.
    jim recently posted..YouTube Tuesday: Runrig – AN DEALACHADH

  31. gorgeous! i might not be able to stand close to the cliff though… too afraid of heights :(
    flipnomad recently posted..Five Tips to Enjoy a Little Luxury Without Busting Your Budget

  32. Ireland is so gorgeous – glad you’re enjoying it! I love the picture of your foot over the edge, trying to picture what Pete was doing while you took it :) fainting, ignoring you or pleading with you?!
    Globetrottergirls recently posted..Observations from the halfway point on the Great American Road Trip

  33. Thanks for sharing the Cliffs of Less.
    Vera Marie Badertscher recently posted..Italy–1950′s Style

  34. I’m with Pete, that picture freaks me out too. Too often I have heard of people getting close to the edge of a cliff and ending up at the bottom meeting a fateful end. Glad you weren’t one of those statistics! :-)
    Deb recently posted..Deb’s First Photostory, Mongol Rally Moments

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