a lot to unpack here...

This day turned out to be one of the busiest on our trip. After leaving Blarney, we headed to Inchigeelagh to search for some Dailor family history (Amanda's maiden name), ended up taking the scenic-route to the Cliffs of Moher, and eventually, we made it to Galway after about 5 hours on the road. We grabbed dinner, then hit the town to catch some live music and another pint.

There's a lot more writing than photos in this post, so grab a drink and get comfortable if you plan on reading through everything here!

Dailor Family History?

About three weeks before our trip, I reached out to Amanda's grandma (Granny Nanny) to ask if she had any additional information about the Dailor (O'Dailor in Ireland) surname beyond what we already knew. Although her knowledge of its history was limited, she suggested that our best bet for finding anything on the name would be in the small town of Inchigeelagh, about thirty minutes away from Cork. She told us to explore the cemeteries and/or churches in the town to see if we could find anything.

We visited a church and three cemeteries, taking the time to look at every single headstone, but we had no luck. However, we did come across headstones that were over 500 years old and caved-in caskets revealing the actual bones of people buried from that time. Sorry, I know that's probably disturbing - my mom wasn't too happy to hear that part of the story. I didn't feel it was respectful to take photos of that, but it was pretty surreal to see!

Still... the search continued!


We made our way back to our car in the ghost town of Inchigeelagh, having seen only two construction workers during our hour-long visit. As we walked, we noticed a building with Gaelic writing on the side, along with a small sign indicating it was a hotel. Convinced there must be someone there who could provide us with some guidance in our search, we walked in what I assumed was the hotel lobby. Inside, we found a family chatting over coffee and snacks. To our surprise, four out of the five individuals were from Virginia, while one was a native Irishman named Joe Creedon.

Feeling a bit nervous, I immediately mentioned that we were on our honeymoon and trying to uncover some family history, hoping to establish some rapport. Joe's response was unexpected, 'You must be an O'Leary! Welcome!'

Well, neither of us come from the O'Leary family, but Joe warmly welcomed us, served us coffee, asked about our lives, shared several pieces of Irish history, lent us a book to aid in our search for the Dailor history, gave us a souvenir to take home to Granny Nanny, and even asked us to film him singing an Irish song for her.

He also mentioned that Inchigeelagh is home to two things: the annual O'Leary family gathering, where O'Learys from all over the world come together to celebrate their heritage, and the fact that stone, rock, and dirt were imported from all over Ireland by the Irish. This means that if we are standing in Inchigeelagh, then we are most likely standing on ground that our ancestors have stood on.

We were closer to the Dailor family than we even knew!

is amanda related to john daly?

So, if you've made it this far, I'll cut right to it - we didn't find the last name Dailor or O'Dailor, but Joe led us to the names that may have gotten mixed up in immigration. He mentioned a few names: Dail, Dale, Daly, Daleigh, and one we hadn't even thought of... Taylor.

We connected with Amanda's dad later that day, and he confirmed that the Dailor family first set foot in the USA in the early 1900s, but he seems to think that the name originates from Dale, Dail, or Daly.

When I realized my wife could somehow be related to John Daly, I laughed hysterically. (I linked the "appropriate" version of the guy HERE)

Unfortunately, we did not find the last name, but we are much further than when we started.

The search continues!

Lets keep going

gougane barra

So, Joe told us to head toward a small town called Gougane Barra (pronounced "Goo-Gone Barra") and to check out the small church near the lake. This led us down another narrow road that was hard to drive on, but it was part of the journey to another awesome spot.

We grabbed a coffee, a pint, and enjoyed some carrot cake while overlooking the small town.

Then the driving began...

Leaving Gougane, we accidentally turned right instead of left. When we had the chance to turn around, we checked Google Maps, which directed us down a back road. Little did we know, we would end up driving for the next 3.5 hours, with an hour and a half spent on the narrow scenic route. Still, I actually enjoyed it because we got to see these quiet parts of the country that we wouldn't have seen otherwise. But, it did feel like a long time on a road that seemed to lead us nowhere... until we got there!

The drive kept going...

and going...

and going...

until we found what we were looking for - the cliffs of moher

Does anyone know how to actually pronounce this place?

Amanda and I finally made it to the Cliffs of Moher, and the views were unreal. We could see for miles and miles, and just as we were about to leave, the clouds came in, and it started to rain. We saw the area just in time!

Amanda and I went back and forth on how to pronounce the Cliffs of Moher - I thought I was right and she was wrong, and vice versa. Then we connected with a bartender from Ireland, and even he didn't really know. He said it changes throughout Ireland, but he thought it sounded closest to 'Moe-err'. So, if you're reading this, let me know what you think!

And we finally made it to galway

time to hit the hay

We made a quick pint stop and watched some live music at The Kings Head in the heart of the Latin Quarter. We definitely could have gone to many more bars that night, but we were exhausted from the day. We were staying at The Dean just down the street, and we were ready to hit the hay!

Final thoughts?

Although we didn't explore Galway as much as we had hoped, our journey along the west side of Ireland exceeded our expectations! Aside from the long drive, we totally enjoyed the day and were stoked with how smoothly everything else went. For those looking for a hotel in town, we highly recommend The Dean hotel!

Off to Switzerland!