Day 2 was the first day with our entire Contiki group, and we headed out early from Dublin.
First stop of the day was Kilkenny, where most of us opted in for the additional bicycle tour. The tour lasted 2 hours and took us all over the cute town of Kilkenny. We visited Kilkenny Castle and saw one of Kilkenny’s famed black cats at St. Canice’s Cathedral.
St. Canice’s Cathedral (black cat visible in the bushes below):
As well, our tour guide taught us some Gaelic phrases and a traditional Irish song about Molly Malone. Later on, he led us in a rousing chorus of Molly Malone while standing near the city centre; a passer-by mistook us for buskers and put money into our guide’s outstretched cap! It was a hefty few coins, or as our guide put it, “almost enough for a pint!” The bike tour was a really fun and efficient way to get a feel of Kilkenny.
After the bike tour, we left Kilkenny to move on to Middleton, where I’d opted in for the next activity, a tour of Jameson’s Whiskey Distillery.
Here we got a thorough explanation of how the whiskey is made, the aging process, and what makes it different from other, non-Irish whiskeys. The tour ended with a whiskey tasting for everybody, and then a bonus whiskey cocktail (Jameson’s, ginger ale, and lime – very refreshing and delicious!) in their Jameson’s bar.
Whiskeys at different stages of the aging process (note how the older & darker it gets, the less remains in the barrel):
We finished the day by driving on to Cork, where we had dinner and spent a relatively quiet night recovering from our day of adventuring.