Experiences range from baking Irish soda bread on the edge of the Cliffs of Moher to meeting with a Clare genealogist to observing a pub seisiún while a local musician decodes the unspoken rules of etiquette governing the music-making.
Each Experience combines complementary activities in unexpected, emotionally rewarding ways. Real CLARE Experiences range from 1 to 7 hours long and are led by true Clare locals with deep ties to the area.
Many are renowned and highly respected throughout Ireland and abroad, including Willie Daly, Ireland’s last traditional matchmaker; Peter Curtin, entrepreneur, raconteur, and publican of the award-winning Roadside Tavern; and Christy McNamara, a button accordion player and photographer whose black and white images hang in the private collections of Brad Pitt and Whoopi Goldberg.
Female Local Experts include Caitriona Considine, who leads participants through the stations that Aran Islanders trod on pilgrimages to the extraordinary St. Brigid’s Holy Well in Liscannor, and Martina McCarthy, who offers a folklore and history “golden hour” tour of Hag’s Head topped by an al fresco repast. See the growing list of Real CLARE Experiences.
The idea for Real CLARE Experiences emerged from the Cultural Roadmapp team’s experiences recording interviews along the Clare coast for its hands-free audio tour app for motorists Ireland’s Wild Atlantic Way: County Clare, which won the Silver Medal in Ireland’s 2018 Digital Media Awards.
“Real CLARE Experiences are the perfect complement to the Wild Atlantic Way road trip experience,” said Cultural Roadmapp CEO and founder, Deborah Schull. “And while you don’t have to use our app to book a Real Clare Experience, in the future roadtrippers will be able to do just that.”
The GPS-enabled audio tour app is available for download on the App Store (for iOS) and Google Play (for Android).
Based in Ireland, Cultural Roadmapp is the work of two Americans: Schull, a New York City–based writer and producer whose audio tours and apps have appeared in the Smithsonian and Reagan Library, and Dr. Leah Bernini Cronin, an ethnomusicologist and traditional Irish fiddle player trained at the University of Limerick. Both spent long periods living in Ireland and wanted to share their fresh take on Irish culture and heritage with the world.