Where Loug Derg flows into The Shannon, on one side you have Killaloe, Co. Clare, cross the bridge over the river and you are in Ballina, Co. Tipperary.
Both are equally picturesque. We were spending the weekend on the boat and the marina is well-maintained and well-equipped for boaters. The towns well-equipped to feed, water (okay wine) and entertain you.
Killaloe is full of lovely little craft and gift shops and a really great cafe where you can browse the bookshelves and sit beside the fire (in winter) or just inhale the wine, charcuterie and cheese on sale in the shop.
|One of the gift shops and Ponte Vecchio|
And then there is the food.
The Wooden Spoon Cafe has an eye-watering display of cakes, proper cakes, like you'd make at home (albeit much more professionally finished.) The lunch menu is equally good especially the predominantly middle eastern vegetarian specials. It was packed every time we were there. I presumed it was with boaters but no, I was informed it was mostly locals. Lucky locals.
|Temptation on display|
|Falafel in pita with all the trimmings|
|Brasserie Mark Anderson|
On Sundays the farmers' market is a bustling space with many of the traders from the Milk Market in Limerick present. We were able to cruise right up to it and moor along side.
The small towns along the Shannon have always been better for food than most provincial Irish towns. I remember years ago being able to get ground coffee in a small corner shop in Drumsna, Leitrim. In those days a rare occurrence. They were catering for the large number of French and Germans hiring cruisers.
It's great to see that they are continuing and improving the tradition, despite the loss of so many cruising Europeans.
Tags: Lough Derg The Shannon Killaloe Co. Clare Ballina Co. Tipperary St. Lua St Flannan's Cathedral Wooden Spoon Cafe Cherrytree Restaurant Brasserie Mark Anderson Ponte Vecchio Milk Market Drumsna Co. Leitrim Food on the Shannon