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Cruising the Cliffs of Moher

Updated: Jun 12, 2022

The Cliffs of Moher in County Clare consist of shale and sandstone that are as high as 214 meters. Most people experience the cliffs by walking a trail along their edge. This helps the hiker experience the height and the incredible views of the Atlantic ocean.

Hiking was not meant to be for our group. Instead we “ship cruised” the cliffs. The captain charted a course as close as he could while keeping safety and local regulations in mind. He set the speed to slow and we viewed the cliffs from the panorama deck.

We spotted lots of seabirds. My knowledge of birds is limited. When I see a bird, I tend to describe it by its color. “Look, a black bird.” “There’s a white bird!” None of this is helpful to those who want to identify the bird and check it off their bird watching list. For me, I appreciate what I see even if I do not remember what the species is. I’m told that we saw guillemots, razorbills, gannets, fulmars, kittiwakes, and puffins, and that the cliffs host up to 30,000 breeding pairs. There was certainly a lot of bird activity. I can say that I saw all the birds except the puffin. The puffin photos I’ve seen imply the the bird is large. The birders tell me that the bird is not as big as most people think. It is probably because I was looking for a giant puffin that I missed seeing the puffins that were in front of me!

When looking through my telephoto lens to spot birds, I also spotted something peculiar. A bride! Yes, there was a woman in a wedding gown posing very close to the cliff. At least I hope that she was posing and not already fed up with marriage.

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