Doolin is a small village on the west coast of Ireland in County Clare. There is one church one camping ground two youth hostels and four pubs. Oh yeah there are some houses and a few cows as well. There is also one chip shop.

One of the two youth hostels is called the rainbow hostel and it is very nice. The owner is a member of Sea Cliff rescue team. They need a sea cliff rescue team because Doolin is the closest inhabitation to the Cliffs of Moher.

I am a little unclear as to the status of the Cliffs of Moher. Some people say that they are the highest sea cliffs in western Europe but I believe that this title belongs to some sea cliffs on the Isle of St Kilda which is a part of the Scottish archipeligo. Perhaps the cliffs of Moher are the largest sea cliffs belonging to a mianland country rather than a detached bit of a country. In any case the cliffs themselves don't mind and are incredibbly impressive. Many of you will have seen them as they were used as the cliffs of insanity in the film The princess bride, but back to Doolin.

The church has a secret passage that leads underground to the coast. It used to be used by smugglers. The entire area is a Karst area. That means limestone. In fact it is the second largest limestone plane in Europe. The largest is in eastern Europe and is called Karst. The Burren is the name of the region that Doolin is in. I guess had the Burren been bigger than Karst then Karst would be known as a Burren region !. All of this limestone means that the ground is like swiss cheese.

Not far from Doolin there is a cave which contains the second largest stacletight in world. This was told to me by the local taxi driver. He also plays in one of the bands in one of the pubs. He used to be a caver untill he lost one of his legs in an accident. This one legged taxi driver, when not hanging out in Doolin, is a lecturer in electrical engineering back in Dublin. By his own account he prefers the life in the West.

All of the pubs serve tremendous Guinness. It is really fantastic. Only one of the pubs is next to the chip shop and it is this one i reccomend. You will often see scruffy poor climbers sitting outside on a night. If you do buy them a pint, they will appreciate it.

You can get to Doolin from Dublin by public bus. The ticket costs about 25 pounds return if you are a student. Ireland is a small country and if you travel for more than 250 kilometers in any direction from any other you will fall off the edge. In spite of this the bus journey takes about 12 hours. This is due to the fractal nature of the road network in Ireland. The fractal dimension increases as you move westward.

When in Doolin do stay at the rainbow youth hostel, do become friends with the one legged taxi driver, don't drink half a bottle of whiskey, no matter how good it is, don't expect to score with any of the numerous cute European travellers that frequent the place, don't be offended when asked "how's it hanging?" in the gents toilets, do go and look at the cliffs of moher.

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