My Love Affair with Cahir, County Tipperary

Summer at Cahir Castle
The River Suir
The River Suir

Cahir, County Tipperary, is one of my favorite places in Ireland.  Traveling to Ireland without stopping in Chair for a few hours seems … well, wrong.  In fact, in December 2014, while basing in County Wicklow, I heard Cahir’s ‘call’ loud and clear.  Enough that I drove more than two hours and stayed the night, just so that I could spend the afternoon wandering around.

There is a certain level of intimacy to Cahir that is lost in other high-traffic tourist areas.  While you may see a bus or two, you can wander the area around the castle (or town) and find more locals out and about.  I have found that I am simply comfortable in Cahir.  I attribute that to the people.  I once based three weeks just a few kilometers from Cahir and stopped most days.  As a solo traveler, I am always greated with a smile, whether it was in a cafe, a pub or a market.  If I had a question, people were always kind and spared a couple of moments to help.

Cahir Castle is my favorite castle (to date) … and there are plenty of them in Ireland.  I wasn’t expecting this type of castle.  Okay, I wasn’t expecting any castles.  Somewhere in my history lessons I jumped from Celtic to modern times. I completely missed the whole Norman-castle-building era.  But there it was, still intact.  It has great towers, a barbican, a great hall and even a working gate.  I was completely mesmerized during the tour.  I also remember thinking … what else have I missed?  So, I keep returning.

Castle Gate
Castle Gate

More importantly for me are the images that I have been able to capture while in Cahir.  I can, and have, taken hundreds of images. Here are my top four favorite images from Cahir:

  1. Cahir Castle on a December Afternoon.  I drove through some heavy rain on my way to Cahir in December 2014.  But as I arrived, it was as if they knew I was coming and the clouds parted.  I spent about an hour around the castle.  A new storm front was rolling in and it was getting dark.  As I was heading out, I noticed a small break in the clouds and thought wait for it. I waited and nothing.  Wait for it.  Nothing.  Wait for it.  And twenty minutes later the  clouds let the afternoon sun let peek through.  I took about 10 images and it was gone.
  2. Friends.  This is from June 2014.  My first couple trips I kept forgetting to walk to the back of the castle.  (Okay, I didn’t know you could walk to the back.)  This time, it was my primary goal.  I turned around and I saw two girls strolling ahead of their moms. Both dressed in pink.  I love that one of the girls has her hands in her pockets and is stretching out her shorts.  You can almost imagine what they were talking about.  I wonder if they will be good friends twenty years from now.
  3. Stormy.  One of the first images that I captured on my first trip in June 2012. How could I not fall in love with this place?
  4. Swiss Cottage.  A warm, sunny September (2013) day, made a perfect backdrop for the architectural find.  Autumn was settling in and along with it, new golden tones.
Cahir Castle on a December Afternoon
Cahir Castle on a December Afternoon
Friends
Friends
Stormy
Stormy
Swiss Cottage
Swiss Cottage
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