Thursday, 12th March 2020
In the early morning, at 7am, our host families said their farewells to the group. It was time to say good-bye as the stay in Carrigaline was over. Five wonderful days were spent in County Cork – lots of adventures, lots of memories were made. Now it is time for the capital of Ireland! The students will meet our tour guide on Nassau Street and he will show them around Dublin, passing Phoenix Park (Europe’s largest city park), Georgian houses and other interesting buildings. Aftwards they will check into their hostel and will get ready for their free afternoon. The students will have time to explore Dublin themselves; to find souvenirs for their relatives and friends and to just stroll around and soak in the atmosphere. We wish them a pleasant time!
Wednesday, 11th March 2020
Today is already the final day of English lessons. For the last lesson Lucy and Jackie have prepared a typical pub quiz: they have set out the tables in groups of four and the teams have to compete with each other… which table will be winner? Who has given the right answers? Who has the best knowledge about Ireland? Let’s see – the winner will be given a surprise 😊. We will also hand out the end-of-course certificates.
In the afternoon the students will be picked up again by our H2 bus and brought to Kinsale. At Charles Fort they will meet our tour guide Barry who will tell them all about this little fishing village with its beautifully coloured houses and narrow streets. He will go back in history to 1601 when a battle was fought between the Irish, Spanish and English soldiers. He will talk about the giant of Kinsale, the “White Lady” and tell them some anecdotes about pirates… The final stop for the day will the cliffs at the “Old Head of Kinsale” with its breathtaking views onto the coastline of West Cork and the Atlantic Sea. If the sun keeps shining the students might be able to dip their toes into the water at Garrettstown beach… We wish them a brilliant afternoon!
Tuesday, 10th March 2020
The second morning of English lessons with Lucy and Jackie went quickly. Our English teachers had prepared interesting topics and tasks around St. Patrick’s Day, Irish traditions, fairies and Hurling. The students were asked to engage in debates, to express their opinion and to extend their vocabulary.
In the afternoon they all headed to Ballymaloe Cookery School where they met with Toby who guided them around the garden grounds. There, they also have a fabulous little house made of more than 1,000 shells! A spectacular little building. Later on, they went to the Ballymaloe House – a luxurious guesthouse that often gets booked for wedding celebrations. On a guided tour around the house they got to see the various dining rooms, bedrooms, kitchen and wine cellar. In the breakfast room they were served tea & scones – a very traditional Irish dish that is usually eaten with cream and strawberry or raspberry jam! Delicious!
Monday, 9th March 2020
In the morning the group met our English teachers Lucy and Jackie at our school in Minane Bridge. After a short introduction about the school they were split into two smaller groups. The lessons went smoothly with lots of games, quizzes, discussions… focusing on speaking, new vocabularies and looking at some common grammar mistakes… but overall to learn English while having fun! In the afternoon the group headed to Cork City for a guided tour with our guide Noel and some free time afterwards. Later in the evening, the students and their teachers relaxed at the Gate Cinema watching a Pixar film called “Onward”. We hope enjoyed their time in Cork.
Sunday, 8th March 2020
At around 9am the students were picked up again by our bus and were driven to Cobh to visit the Titanic Experience. The museum is housed in the original building of the “White Star Line” company that sold the tickets to those unfortunate 123 passengers who boarded Titanic in Cobh (formerly Queenstown) back in 1912. The students went on an audio-visual tour and experienced “live” the sinking of the ship! They also got to see the first- and third-class cabins and were given a boarding card with the original name of one of the passengers. At the end of their visit they were able to find out the fate of each of those passengers. Did they survive? Afterwards they had some free time to stroll along the Victorian house facades and the pier. Cobh is a nice sea-side town right at Cork’s harbor (which apparently is the world’s second largest natural harbor!).
In the afternoon they all went to kiss the Blarney Stone! Blarney Castle is an old fortress, more than 600 years old. One can climb up to the top of the ruin and kiss the famous stone that promises to give the “gift of the gap” (the ability to speak eloquently). Let’s see how the students perform during their English
lessons 😊. The weather yesterday was sunny and cloudy and a few rain showers in between. But that is the typical weather of Ireland and the students just went along with it! In the evening they returned back to their host families for a nice dinner. Eventually they had a “Ceili” dance lesson with our dance teacher Fionan. Ceili is a gathering of people dancing together to Irish traditional music… the dances have very special names like “Shoe the Donkey”, “The Walls of Limerick” and “The Battle of Ennis”. It is a fun and very entertaining way to dance and it burns off a lot of calories!
Saturday, 7th March 2020
17 students and their teachers from HLT Semmering arrived safe and sound in Dublin. They were picked up by our bus driver and H2 member Michael. Once the luggage was stored away in the bus, the adventure on the green island began! First stop was Butlers Chocolate Experience where the students enjoyed a delicious hot chocolate, watched the chocolate film and wandered through the chocolate museum. The students also painted and decorated their own piece of chocolate to take home (unless they couldn’t resist and ate it already 😊). The group then headed to County Cork. At 8.30pm they arrived in Carrigaline and were welcomed by our H2 host families and the H2 team members Lisa and Regina. They all went home quickly as everybody was looking forward to some food and a bed to recover from the journey.