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Cycling Cork to Dublin, July 2011 (day 2)

July 16, 2011

From Carrick on Suir, I went north-east on a route taking me through five counties, starting in Tipperary, through Kilkenny, Carlow, Wexford to south Wicklow.  From Carrick I followed the R697 and R701, a really lovely ride on gently rising ground to Thomastown.

The two fine 7th Century crosses of Ahenny are situated in a lovely graveyard – not, apparently, the original site.

A detour to the nicely presented village of Tullaghought resulted in an unexpected climb, but also a great view over the rolling countryside and the far hills.

From there, it was an easy ride on a pleasant road to Jerpoint Abbey, just before Thomastown.

Two km later, I was in one of the nicest medieval towns in Ireland, Thomastown, and having a fine lunch in the lovely Blueberry Cafe on Lady’s Well Street.

Fromm there, I followed the R703, a quiet regional road up and over a ride to Graignamanagh, another major river crossing, and further east on the R702, then veered in a more northerly direction (into stiffening northerly wind) towards Wicklow on the R746 to Bunclody.

The tiny village of Ballymurphy Street had a lovely flower display and some contented looking gnomes.

And then on through Bunclody, where I was tempted to stop, but there didn’t seem to be anywhere good  to stay, so I crossed another river and set off to Aughrim.

It was a glorious evening, and i was treated to the fine sight of the southern slopes of the Wicklow Mountains as I went through Carnew and then went north on the R748 towards Aughrim.

And finally, about 125km from Carrick-on-Suir, into Aughrim.  I stayed in the Meath Arms, a friendly place (and quite cheap), with a clean good bedroom.  Again, the restaurant didn’t appeal, so I went to the Chinese restaurant next door, featuring some quite gloriously tacky interior decor and a surprisingly drinkable house white wine.

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