The Cliffs of Moher

Cliffs of Moher, IrelandThe Cliffs of Moher are, without a doubt, a must-see in Ireland. Of course, one’s experience of the Cliffs will be highly dependent on the weather. The day my husband and I visited the Cliffs started out foggy and misty. As the day progressed, the fog slowly dissipated. Although visibility improved, the weather did not. We walked the length of the Cliff’s pathway (plus a tiny bit of off-roading) during periods of high winds, drizzle, and several good downpours along with a few treasured breaks in precipitation. All told, we experienced the Cliffs through the gamut of wet weather.

It was no small feat to keep my camera lens spot- and mist-free, so I’m pretty happy that I was able to take any decent pictures at all. This post includes my top picks, but shown in the order of the narrative, not necessarily in the order they were taken.

Cliffs of Moher Visitors Center, IrelandIt was raining when we arrived at the Cliffs, so our first stop was the Cliffs of Moher Visitor Centre. The facilities were modern, clean, and eco-friendly. Along with a cafe, coffee shop, gift shop, and restrooms, there is an information desk with helpful staff. When we asked, “How do you pronounce ‘The Cliffs of Moher’?” we were told that it sounds like mother, but without the “T,” so “MU-her.” Yup, we’d been saying it wrong.

The Visitor Centre also contains the Atlantic Edge interpretive experience, which is organized into themed areas exploring the different elements of the Cliffs, including Ocean, Rock, Nature, and Man. The Atlantic Edge contains images, displays, video, and a  “virtual reality cliff face adventure,” which allows you “to experience life at the cliff face both above and below sea level.” The photo above shows the Atlantic Edge with emphasis on the screen showing the video, “The Clare Journey,” which is an aerial tour of County Clare including the Cliffs of Moher. With so much to see and do in the Visitor Centre, we could have stayed all day, but, rain or not, we were itching to see the Cliffs.

Cliffs of Moher Sign Map, IrelandTo get you oriented, just outside the Visitor Centre is a map of the site.

Panorama of the Cliffs of Moher, IrelandTo get you further oriented, here’s a panorama of the area taken from the North Platform, with O’Brien’s Tower to the north and Hag’s Head at the far southern tip. Click on this photo for a larger view.

O'Brien's Tower on the Cliffs of Moher, IrelandWe first made our way to O’Brien’s Tower.

Cliffs of Moher, IrelandOn the way, we had some misty views to the south. Along with lots of rain.

Hag's Head, Cliffs of Moher, IrelandAt the southern tip is Hag’s Head, so named because it is said to resemble a woman’s head looking out to sea. I’ll take their word for it. Moher Tower stands on Hag’s Head.

Cliffs of Moher, IrelandHere’s a view of the southern end of the Cliffs. Do you see that tiny island-y thing?…

Base of the Cliffs of Moher, IrelandI give you a rather blue close-up of it. The original photo was very dark, so blame my lack of post-processing skills for this one.

O'Brien's Tower, Cliffs of Moher, IrelandO’Brien’s Tower houses a little shop, which provides access to the roof (for a fee). The Tower is said to provide spectacular views. I really wanted to go up, but the wind was so strong that people’s umbrellas were turning inside out. Combine the wind with rain and low visibility as a result of the fog and the decision was simple to stay on solid ground. Next time, though. Definitely next time.

North Cliffs of Moher, IrelandA pathway heading north from O’Brien’s Tower provided this view of Aillenasearrach (or Aill Na Searrach). I understand that one can see all the way to Galway Bay on a clear day.

Rock Ledge on the Cliffs of Moher, IrelandHeading back from O’Brien’s Tower provides a view of an interesting rock ledge sticking out of the cliff face as well as a peek at Irish countryside beside Liscannor Bay.

Cliffs of Moher Towards Liscannor Bay, IrelandThis photo provides a better view towards Liscannor Bay. The area pictured in the foreground is where one enters the cliff area from the Visitor Centre. Turn right for O’Brien’s Tower, left to head south along the Cliffs, or straight to the Main Platform at the Cliffs’ edge.

Cliffs of Moher, IrelandWe continued south on the path.

Goat Island, the Stack, and O'Brien's Tower, Cliffs of Moher, IrelandLooking back, O’Brien’s Tower is visible along with the rock ledge seen earlier. The pointed rock in the water below O’Brien’s Tower is called the Stack. The strip of land in the foreground jutting out into the ocean is called Goat Island.

Cliffs of Moher Danger SignDo you want even better pictures of the Stack and the cliff face? Then climb over the rock wall and ignore the signs. Do not take this statement as encouragement to do so.

Cliffs of Moher Cliff Path, IrelandIf you do, however, you’ll find yourself on a dirt path. Is it me or do a wet and slippery dirt path and 700-foot-high cliffs actually go well together?

Cliffs of Moher Photographer, IrelandThat photographer is braver than I am, because this was as close to the edge as I could get. I also could not bring myself to move down the path beyond the area by the three poles, so I gave my husband my camera and he took pictures for me.

Cliffs of Moher, Goat Island and Stack, IrelandThanks go to the hubster for this photo of the cliff face…

Cliffs of Moher Beach, Irelandand for this photo of the beach all that way down below. I get queasy just looking at the pictures.

The Cliffs of Moher OBriens Tower, IrelandTo add a little perspective, take another look at O’Brien’s Tower in the photo two above, then look again at this photo. I remind you that those dots next to the Tower are not ants, but humans. Yeah, the Cliffs are that high.

On a side note,  you can see the outlines of the Aran Islands in the distance.

Cliffs of Moher Stack, IrelandNow to the Stack. I wish three things: 1. that I knew why some of my photos come out looking like watercolor paintings. 2 that I had known all those white dots were birds, including puffins! and 3. that I’d used my zoom lens to its full capacity. Instead, I cropped and enlarged this photo to give you…

Stack's Base, Cliffs of Moher, Irelandthis very watercolor-y looking photo of the base of the Stack. But can you see all the birds?

Cliffs of Moher, IrelandSo that’s the Cliffs of Moher. If you haven’t been, I hope this post has given you a sense of what a visit would be like. If you have been, I hope this post brought back only good memories.

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About satnavandcider

An American expat living in England, exploring the United Kingdom and Europe through five senses and a camera lens.
This entry was posted in All Posts, Ireland, Landscape and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

12 Responses to The Cliffs of Moher

  1. Pit says:

    I agree with you: I could never have taken those pics that required getting close to the edge of the cliff(s). That would have given me a very uneasy feeling in my guts.

  2. Michelle says:

    Amazing shots and great views! Love it!

  3. Dina says:

    Amazing, isn’t it? Beautiful spot, I went there on a sunny, very windy day, I’ll never forget it.
    Greetings
    DIna

  4. Yia Su! says:

    Really? Those are birds? I couldn’t tell if I wasn’t told so! Amazing photos!

    • I didn’t realize they were birds and I was there! 🙂 It was only when I saw the full-sized, full-screen version of the photo that I could tell what the white spots were. And thanks for the compliment!

  5. Travelbunny says:

    Great shots of this amazing scenery. I didn’t even climb over the boundary when I went let alone get near to the cliff edge – interesting to see the shots I might have got had I done so!!

    • Thanks for your comment and compliment. Believe me, I would not have climbed over the boundary had my husband not done so enthusiastically (along with a multitude of other crazy people). But I am glad that we came away with some nice photos to enjoy.

  6. Pingback: Tower on the Cliffs | Sat Nav and Cider

  7. WOW–just… WOW. What an extraordinary place. Thank you for putting it on my radar!

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