Bantry, Ireland

2019 HAL World Cruise

Tuesday, May 7, 2019

 

On June 14, 2017, the MS Prinsendam sailed into Bantry Harbor.  She was the first cruise liner in 30 years to do so!  At the time, the Bantry Bay Port Company Harbour Master, Captain Paul O’Regan, stated that not only Bantry, but the whole of West Cork was planning to grow tourism (especially the boutique cruises or expedition cruises) over the next few years.  He expressed his belief that these smaller ships, able to access smaller ports, could provide their passengers with a richer onshore experience.  I don’t know how well the tourism campaign is doing for Bantry, but hey, the MS Amsterdam sailed in this morning with 1300 passengers ready to eat, drink and spend their money!!!

Bantry is small town situated at the head of a very large inlet.  It is remote and surrounded by hills except for the 30-mile sea inlet that is named after it.  The landscape is magnificent.  Take a look at the photos:

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Nearly 2 years after the cruise industry rediscovered the beauty of Bantry, we arrived aboard the MS Amsterdam.
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This is a tender port and the locals put their own harbor boats into service to bring passengers into town quickly. They also provided a shuttle service to transport everyone to the town center only 1/2 mile away!!! Very nice.
The town is surrounded by hills making the view very picturesque.
The town is surrounded by hills making the view very picturesque.
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The Bay is also home to a thriving mussel industry with the mussel farms dotting the harbor.
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We have been told that these floats hold long strips of rope. The mussels attach themselves to the rope and as the colony grows, the float sinks deeper into the sea. that indicates the mussels are ready for harvesting.
And that's when the mussel harvester goes into action!
And that’s when the mussel harvester goes into action!
We rode the shuttle into town and were droped off at the town center.
We rode the shuttle into town and were dropped off at the town center.
We walked through town.
We walked through town.
We stopped in a few shops.
We stopped in a few shops.
We visited Ma Muphy's Pub and shop.
We visited Ma Murphy’s Pub and shop.
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The bar did not have an extensive display, but the atmosphere was very warm and friendly.
And the music scene was quite unexpected!!!
And the music scene was quite unexpected!!!
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Continuing our exploration,we came across Blackrock Terrace. Built by creamery owner, William Warner, in 1886, it was home to the business people of the town.
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William Warner was himself a businessman who pioneered a blend of butter for the export market. He had dairies for blending and preserving; sawmills and a joinery for making the butter boxes and firkins (barrels); and he started the Bantry butter exchange
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This is the Bantry House built in the 17th century.  It has expanded over the years and has belonged to the same family since 1750.
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As we walked back to the tender dock, we spotted the Bantry Bay Inn with O’Donovans Pub.
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Hey, this is a town that KNOWS mussels!!! How could we resist?!? Well, we couldn’t!!!
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It was a lovely meal; this was a fun port; the cruise was spectacular; and we thank you for joining us on on this adventure. Here’s to you!   Cheers!!!

Now, we are on the way home!!!

Now, we are on the way home!!!

 

Bantry was our last port-of-call on this 2019 World Cruise.  We are now on our way back to Ft. Lauderdale and the conclusion of this adventure.  Thank you for joining us in the fun.  We are eagerly planning the next venture.  Perhaps you’ll join us for that, too?!?  We’ll keep you posted!!!

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