Mizen Head, Co. Cork : Travel Reminiscences

Mizen Head, Co. Cork : Travel Reminiscences

10 day self-drive tour of Ireland : October 2009

Mizen Head is well-worth visiting.   I had done a blog in 2009, as with Blarney Castle, but it’s worth another mention.    It’s the most south-westerly tip of Ireland, with steep cliffs, often lashed by storms.  A car park is located at the Visitors’ Centre .. from there, there is a 10 minute walk, across an arched pedestrian bridge to the Signal Station on Cloghan Island ..

IMG_9527-walking to furthest South Westerly point of Ireland The visitors’ centre ..

P1040527- Mizen Head


Postcard on the right, is typical of the landscape in that area .. barren, windswept green grass with lots and lots of sheep !


P1080951- in visitors centre - Mizen Head


IMG_9528-Walking bridge over gorgeLooking straight down from the path … it’s high!!

Copy of P1080956P1040526- Mizen Head


Interesting rock formations  ..

Copy of P1080958 IMG_9533- cross the bridgeOn our right, on the pedestrian bridge, we could see the sea through a gap in the cliffs  ..



IMG_9536- from bridge


Fastnet Lighthouse – about 4 miles from the coast – is known as The Teardrop of Ireland, as it was last sight of Ireland for 19th century emigrants sailing to America.  Built in 1854 and replaced in 1904 by a Cornish granite tower with powerful new light …


Inside the Signal Station ..

P1080964- in lighthouse - Mizen Head

Signal Station :  Fog Signal was established in 1909 and Keepers’ dwellings were built.  The fog signal was an explosive charge (2 shots) fired at 7 1/2 min intervals.  In 1914 the dwellings were white washed so as to act as a better day marker.  In 1934 the fog signal was changed to 2 shots every 5 mins with a brilliant flash accompanying the fog signal at night.  Explosive type fog signal was withdrawn in 1969.

Medium Frequency Radio beacon (the first in Ireland) was installed in 1931 .. now superseded by modern technology .. was discontinued in 1999.

In 1959 a white occulting light was established.   In 1993 the Mizen Head light was converted to automatic operation and the Lightkeepers were permanently withdrawn in 1993.

An interesting insight into the workings and living conditions of a lighthouse/signal station  ..


P1080965 P1080966 P1080967 P1080968


P1080969  I had to look twice at the figure sitting there .. it looked like Robert Redford !!!!




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Furthest most south-westerly point of Ireland.  Hubby was there ..


…   and so was I  🙂


… and you can see for miles .. and miles ..









Signal Station .. if you look very closely you can see Fastnet Lighthouse on the horizon to the right …




Odd sundial .. the markings are written upside down.  It was 1:00 pm.  I think (it was 5 years ago after all  !)  … it was standing upright which would make more sense


Large bell is also upside down!   Doesn’t make sense .. wouldn’t it fill with water?   Maybe there was a hole at the bottom/top.  It was out in the open – in the area where they demonstrate the 2 shots fog signal.   Maybe it was easier to store it upside down 🙂   I don’t know .. I didn’t ask


Walking back to the Visitors’  Centre and car park ..


In the car park … propeller salvaged from the sea.  If I remember correctly from the plaque,  it came from the SS Trada.   Not from memory but from info on website 😉  it was shipwrecked in 1908.  63 lives were saved by the resident engineer and workmen on site ..

P1080997P1080995Interesting stuff  !!

From here we made our way back to the city of Cork via Kinsale

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