Good morning, good afternoon, good evening! Wherever you are, whatever you’re doing, perhaps you’d like to join us for another trip around the world…

Recently, a few folks have come forward to express how much Ireland reminds them of certain places close to home – how the craggy edges of the Wild West Atlantic Way emulate that of Cape Town; or how the thatched houses in the rolling emerald hills are a mirror’s image to those in Tennessee. Regardless of division of geographical areas, it’s sometimes nice to recall just how small the world can be – a pleasant echo of a home away from home exists especially in the Irish West.

On a personal level, Ireland is only my second venture out of my country of origin – and said venture echoed my earlier journey to Nova Scotia, whose varied terrain and monumental hills were paralleled by the Wild West of Ireland’s own. The miles of coastline were a constant companion in either realm – and moreover, it was comforting to know the same ocean spanned around either island as well as littoral Massachusetts, which is my actual home. Nova Scotia might’ve meant “New Scotland”; but people often link Ireland to Scotland regardless – they are, in my mind, sister regions.

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Photograph by Wild Westie Claudia Pellegrini Queiroz

Globally, Ireland is linked to many different land-forms – comparisons could also be drawn to Iceland [albeit temperately; Ireland is just a bit warmer] or even to parts of Louisiana [shout-out to the bogs!]. Typically, places with a rugged, drastic coastline, deciduous zones, and mountains or hills make the comparison to Ireland very easy –

That being said, a place you might not have considered comparing to Ireland but is worth the note?

Brazil!

                Claudia Pellegrini Queiroz, an exceptional photographer from Brazil (or, more accurately, Brasil), says she felt at home when traveling with Wild West Irish Tours in Ireland.

“Arriving in Ireland feels like a welcome home. I am Brazilian. The Irish spirit is just as musical and happy [as in Brazil].” She adds that Brazilians are friendly and welcoming – just like the Irish. Claudia herself brought that spirit with her as she embraced the scenery and people – bringing to life the many colors and emotions in the Irish landscape.

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Photograph by Wild Westie Claudia Pellegrini Queiroz – featuring Claudia herself!

“I loved the historical, anthropological, musical [aspects] and the times we were free to experience nature,” says Claudia of her time with Wild West Irish Tours. “I keep coming back. Ireland soothes me. Going to Ireland felt like a calling, and once I heard it, I felt it will be eternal.”

Brazil, being more Southern than Ireland and on the opposite side of the world, wouldn’t be someone’s first choice in comparative geography [then again, is comparative geography on anyone’s mind, usually?]. That being said, you can find a camaraderie in the way certain Irish houses emulate the vibrant colors of some Brazilian homes. The lush green landscape and coastal drama of land and sea is a heartbeat that pulses in time to Ireland’s own, especially its Wild West.

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Photograph by Wild Westie Claudia Pellegrini Queiroz

The Rainforest and places such as the Burren in Ireland, while two very different ecosystems, are home to a considerable amount of life forms [some you might not even expect]. Each are home to famous rivers – the Shannon and the Amazon, respectively. In fact, both areas are known for their plentiful rivers! There are even trees that look similar – the Irish “palm” [Cordyline Australis, an arbor visitor from New Zealand] and the Brazilian palm [what you’d expect to see on a beautiful sandy beach]. The Gulf Stream seems to connect them, as Claudia connects with Ireland herself: warmly and with boundless enthusiasm.

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Photograph by Wild Westie Claudia Pellegrini Queiroz

“I have been 6 times and I am looking forward to being there in September,” says Claudia. “Funny thing, the first place we went, I just laid in the ground like I belonged and had missed the land…the day before I was returning home, after 3 weeks in Ireland, I caught myself in tears. Somehow I heard a voice saying, it is ok now, you will always come back. As I have and will.”

Being connected in so many ways to each other in this world is an arguable blessing.

Ireland has, by itself, an individual brilliance about it that can make anyone feel at home – there is something for everyone here, be it the culture, the music, the people, the folklore, the history, or simply a little farm in a valley that feels like the heart of wherever you’re from –

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Photograph by Wild Westie Claudia Pellegrini Queiroz

So no matter where that is, you have a piece of home waiting for you in the Wild West of Ireland. It is a unique experience unto itself, and there is nowhere like it in the world exactly – just places within itself that feel like coming home.

                                                                                                                Until next time,

                                                                                                                Sam Fishkind

                                                                                                                Wild West Irish Tours

                                                                                                            Social Media Manager & Scribe

(All photographs in this post are taken by Claudia Pellegrini Queiroz, with our sincere gratitude!)

Good morning, good afternoon, good evening! Wherever you are, whatever you’re up to, perhaps you could take a moment on this August Thursday and enjoy an international form of communication: music!

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Photograph by Wild Westie Darcy Banks (with our gratitude)!

Music has, for centuries, been a means of speaking to one another – be it a romantic love song between the wooer and the wooed, a tune to pick up one’s spirits during the war & bolster morale, or simply something to dance to and connect with others on the dancefloor. In the Land of Heart’s Desire, music is all of the above – and more.

Besides the numerous festivals Ireland has dedicated to music, its prevalence exists throughout hundreds of small venues – places such as pubs, the streets, and other unexpected realms possess a pounding energy that comes only from the sound of Irish music. Be it fiddle or flute, the delightful accordion (or even the notable tin whistle); the Wild West of Ireland is full of song. Music spills out over the cobblestones and hills to ensnare travelers in a comforting sonic blanket – encouraging them to stay and listen to what Ireland has to say in a different kind of way.

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The incomparable Cathy Jordan of the band Dervish!

On a Wild West Irish Tours adventure, finding melodies isn’t hard – following one’s feet to our secret venues and meeting who we meet almost always ensures a musical experience unlike any other.

We have had the pleasure of experiencing the resounding musical presence of a one talented Cathy Jordan of the acclaimed band Dervish, whom you might remember narrating our beautiful video encapsulating the Wild West of Ireland.

You might also recall the incredible Mirella Murray of the Cherish the Ladies and singer-songwriter Don Stiffe; who is arguably one of the finest Irish voices out there today.

Music is an intrinsic part of our journey – even during travel, we find ourselves tuning in to some truly quality playlists provided by Michael and Trish; who are, of course, connoisseurs of all things Irish (and therefore tend to pick amazing songs/artists). The harmonies of Ireland add another layer of life to a country that teems with passion and artistic exploration. We are more than happy to bring you performances of Irish song and dance – or, more aptly, bring you to the performances!

Of course, we can’t mention all this musical entertainment without bringing up our beloved Ganley Sisters – Sandra (Mayo Rose winner & Tralee Rose candidate) and Laura are another fantastic example of Celtic talent! While not musicians in the basic sense, they are communicators with every tap of their feet – a rhythm which is offset by reels and rallying notes; all of which comes together in a symphony of sharp claps and timely maneuvers.

No matter where we go in the Wild West of Ireland, we intend to take you only to the best places of Celtic song & dance. All we ask you to take with you is a willingness to tap your feet, clap your hands, and sing along if you so desire. In the Land of Heart’s Desire, the pulse can be found in the power of music.

  Until next time,

                                                                                                                Sam Fishkind

                                               Wild West Irish Tours

 Social Media Manager & Scribe

Come to Ireland This Fall

Did you know Ireland is gorgeous in the autumn? Did you know airfare is cheaper after September? Did you know our we’re having a fall sale of $300 off and you can come to Ireland for only $1999 per person?

Beautiful fall colors in the wild west of Ireland!

Here are the October tour dates…book now and you can save $300 on any of these tours!

 Not valid for prior purchases. This offer is valid until October 30, 2017.

Good morning, good afternoon, good evening to you all!

We thought we might take a moment to delve a little deeper into our brand new tour…

The Wild West Atlantic Way Tour is an epic adventure encompassing all the best we have to offer – from Clare to Sligo, Leitrim, the newly-introduced Mayo and more, we plan to bring you the most exciting and unseen aspects of genuine Ireland. The Wild West is rife with lush countryside, friendly locals, and a few locales you might have seen in media such as Game of Thrones, Star Wars, and more –

But we are here to show you a fantastical world immersed in reality, rather than through a screen.

Engaging with famous landmarks and hidden treasures alike, the Wild West Atlantic Way Tour is bound to sweep you off your feet and spirit you away on a quest for the unknown – a journey through the Land of Heart’s Desire unlike any you’ll find elsewhere. Stay in homey B&Bs, walk trails guided by brilliant teachers, and seek fulfillment in the seldom and wonderful.

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We spoke with Wild West Irish Tours’ Trish O’Donnell-Jenkins for a more intimate look into the upcoming tour – which we plan to loop you into in August with exclusive footage, photos, blog posts, and more!

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Trish, bringing sunshine & rainbows where’er she goes!

“The Wild West Atlantic Way Tour is meant to incorporate all of the best places to visit, the best people, and the best scenery all of the tours we’ve been doing for the past several years,” Trish says.

“You can see a lot more of Ireland and what we do on our tours in one trip. This tour in particular is a good cross-section on all of our tours, and at the same time, you get the depth that we do traditionally.”

 

The details of the tour are given, for the most part, in our aforementioned announcement post – but Trish dropped a few new clues about potential locations.

 

“We drive along the Causeway Coast – the Northern Coastline of Ireland with just utterly beautiful castles…places such as Giant’s Causeway are on the map,” she said.

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Something you might see along the Wild West Atlantic Way…

“Mayo was included this year as a special tribute to Sandra Ganley,” Trish added. “And Michael has some cool stuff lined up with Mayo.” What cool stuff that might be remains to be seen – but again, we’ll reveal bits and bobs toward the end of the month…

Another great chance to preview the Wild West Atlantic Way is through our video, hosted by the incomparable Rose of Mayo winner & Rose of Tralee competitor Sandra Ganley – for whom the County Mayo was added!

 

Trish also had this to say about the latest and greatest:

12006216_1010291708990875_2379148162247120177_n“We are excited to introduce this new tour because it showcases so much of what we’ve been working on these past seven years: our connections to the local people and hidden gems of Western Ireland, along with the iconic sites. If you only have one chance to visit Ireland in your life, this tour should be it!”

 

 

That being said, it’s also an excellent opportunity to sample what Wild West Irish Tours has to offer – to expand on future endeavors with specifications on, say, a Connemara jaunt or a sweeping Signature journey.

 Find your way, find yourself, and find adventure along the Wild West Atlantic Way – dare to be wild with us!

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Expect great things in simple places.

       Until next time,

                                                                                     Sam Fishkind

                                                                                    Wild West Irish Tours

                                                                                    Social Media Manager & Scribe