"I will arise and go now, and go to Innisfree...", Spending a week with family in Ross Behy a few weeks ago, we explored by poking around the houses on the small street that ran up along the hillside. This is where we were if you want to look at a map.
Mind you, we weren't able to get INSIDE any of these houses, but we did our very paparazzi best to snap pics through the windows. We also did a little sleuthing as to what the cost of these houses might be. Due to the huge population collapse over the course of the last 150 years there are tons of small buildings and stone houses scattered all over Ireland and it is tempting to think about buying one, fixing it up and having a perfect little home in the greenest country in the world. But it ain't cheap. We saw gutted stone houses on a few acres of land going for 500,000 Euro, and nice homes in the country where all well over 1 million Euro. Add the weak dollar exchange to those numbers and you get some real sticker shock. Part of the issue here is that as many old houses as there are, new building is carefully controlled and not often allowed in the beautiful western "historic" part of the country, so buyers are really forced to fix up rather than build and there is a real pressure on the market. Until the strength of the US dollar comes back up, we'll just be visiting, but boy is it nice to think about moving to Ireland for a year, fixing up a house and starting AT: Ireland. ;-)