It rained overnight at Southerness, so we had a bit of a late start to let the tent and fly cover etc dry out before we packed it away in the panniers…we were pleased that things packed away neatly again …as this was the 1st time we had used them and you know how it can be when things never seem to go back quite as compact.
We were headed for Cairnryan, where we would eventually get the ferry over to Ireland. We were unsure if we would spend the night there and travel to Ireland tomorrow or whether we would get the ferry to Larne today.
Vince had another ride from the Great Motorcycle Tours of Europe book he wanted to do….the Galloway Forest Ride and maybe go offroad on the Raiders Road. We met some riders who had just completed it and they said there was only a bit that was tricky….we had some trouble with a hill of particularly loose gravel….but Vince made it to the top safely with both of us on board….I probably needed a double scotch at the time….I find off road much scarier than he does…but he says that’s why I’m Adventure Girl…I feel the fear and do it anyway…he’s trying to convince me I’m braver than I think…
We arrived in Cairnryan around 2.10pm and decided to check out the ferry schedule before getting some lunch and working out accommodation. I did a reccie and there was a fast ferry of 1 hour at 5.30pm or the next day a ferry at 8.00am and 1.30pm both taking 2 hours and again the fast ferry at 5.30pm. I let Vince know and we decided on the fast ferry today. So we booked our tickets for two adults and a motorbike ….it was 69 pounds.
We went into the nearby town of Stranraer and had lunch at the Customs House …which claims to be the last house before Ireland. Then we had to be back at Cainryan to check in before 4.30 pm. We were at the head of lane 2 and were the first vehicle to be boarded….. this is the second ferry crossing the ANIMAL has done (the first being to Isle of Skye)….. we are getting good at this! Once on board we went to the bar and had a diet coke and some potatoe chips whilst we travelled over the Irish Sea to Larne. Happy to say neither of us were seasick…thank goodness.
It was raining when we left Cairnryan (Scotland) and when we arrived at Larne (Northern Ireland). We quickly managed to find a B&B at Derrin House, where Ivy made us welcome and it was only 63 pounds for a double. She also suggested a local restaurant for dinner ….which was Checker’s Winebar. Vince had a Guinness and made me try some …I didn’t like it. I had a very “Irish” chicken schnitzel – it was battered instead of crumbed and served with pepper sauce! Well, we are in Northern Ireland after all…..