Kinsale, Charles Fort, and the Lusitania Memorial

Kinsale is a beautiful town billed as the Gateway to the Wild Atlantic Way. It is situated on a yacht-filled harbor with Charles Fort and James Fort guarding the narrow entrance to the sea. It was established in the 13th C. The famous “Battle of Kinsale” took place in 1601in which the English were victorious.

On May 7th, 1915 the RMS Lusitania was torpedoed and sunk by a German U-boat off the coast of Kinsale with 1,198 passengers losing their lives.

The walk up to Charles Fort from the harbor in Kinsale is gorgeous. you travel on city streets but the views are spectacular. We had a wonderful sunny day and thoroughly enjoyed the walk. It’s a couple of km. and mostly uphill but the return is mostly downhill. Charles Fort is a star-shaped Fort and a big tourist attraction. Admittance is on your Heritage Pass.

You can walk all over the Fort and take a guided tour as well. It was very good. Lots of places to enjoy the day and relax for awhile as you contemplate the historical significance of Charles Fort. Then when you’re ready, go back into town and have lunch at the Poet’s Nook.

This is a tiny place with just a few tables and is lined with bookshelves filled with books you can peruse and purchase. The food is great and well presented. The owners are very personable and welcoming. It’s a little hard to find but well worth the effort.

We had soup, sandwiches, and, of course, pots of steaming tea. All delicious and homemade.

We finished up with a shared dessert that was wonderful. Couldn’t ask for a better place for lunch.

After eating we headed for the Lusitania Memorial which was out of town and up the coast. The drive on narrow roads through the Irish Countryside was quite nice and we met very few cars on the way. We caught glimpses of the sea as we drove.

Beautiful views of the sea as we followed the road to the Memorial.

The Memorial is on a headland at the edge of the sea. A fitting place to remember so many who were lost.

Beautiful art work surrounds the Memorial and tells the story of that day. Men, women, and children were lost when torpedoes by the German U-boat.

If you walk out from the Memorial and along the road, you are met with stunning views of the Irish Coastline as it meets the sea. We were fortunate to see it on a beautiful sunny day with calm waters. The blues and greens are intense. The pictures really don’t do it justice.

Our time spent at the Memorial was reflective of the breadth of history contained in this small Island. We thought we were finished sightseeing for the day but on the way back to our hotel we found this…

Of course, we had to stop and join families who were out walking with children and dogs. We stayed on the beach watching the sun begin its descent. It was a peaceful end to a beautiful day.

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