Having been looking forward to our trip for a very long time, I was very excited when the day of our departure had finally come. We, 44 students, Prof. Gutmann, Prof. Schmidhofer and Prof. Eibel, began our journey on Friday, 22 September, after meeting merely a few minutes after midnight. However, we managed to keep our tiredness and lack of sleep at bay, which allowed for quite a jolly bus ride to Bratislava. After the check-in and security checks, we took off at Bratislava Airport and Ryanair took us to Ireland safely – but in the meantime a bit more tired…
My first impression of Ireland, or more specifically Dublin, was the bad, windy, rainy (aka Irish) weather. A very nice and patient bus driver took us to Galway where we stayed in a hostel in the city center for two days. During these days, we started exploring lovely Ireland and the hospitality of the Irish. While staying in Galway, we visited the old monastery of Clonmacnoise, Bunratty Castle, The Burren – a very special limestone landscape – and last but not least the Cliffs of Moher. The cliffs were extremely impressive and although we weren’t that lucky with the weather, they were just unimaginably beautiful!
Continuing our trip, we switched to the eastern part of Ireland and stayed in Dublin for seven days. Without any doubt, this was just a very special week for all of us! We attended classes at a language school where we could improve and practice our English skills without any pressure – and having a lot of fun in the process. Of course, we also visited the city center of Dublin and had plenty opportunities to get to know the Irish culture, for example, by watching a greyhound race in the evening or taking lessons in Irish dancing in the afternoon. At the end of our trip, we also went on a full day trip to Kilkenny.
In Dublin, more precisely Dun Laoghaire, we stayed with host families, which was a good chance to experience the everyday life of a typical Irish family. All our host families were very nice and as far as my host family is concerned, I have to say that living with them for a week was as a real pleasure! Considering that we stayed in Ireland for almost ten days, which sounds quite long, I must admit that time went by very fast – in my opinion too fast!
In a nutshell, our trip to Ireland was marked by many valuable experiences! We definitely enjoyed Ireland, particularly the Irish friendliness, their hospitality and their willingness to help in various situations. This journey to the Emerald Isle is definitely going to stick in our memories for a very long time!