Last weekend, we took our first day trip of the program to County Meath! Just an hour from the UCD Campus, County Meath is known for its beautiful countryside. We visited Causey Farm, an interactive, hands-on look into traditional Irish culture. From making Irish soda bread, to dancing a jig, to learning Hurley, we felt more Irish than ever after this trip.


To start the day, we made Irish Soda Bread. It’s such a simple recipe, but it tastes so so good. We paired up and took about 20 minutes to prepare the mixture. The recipe calls for one egg, but there was a catch. Debbie, our guide for the day, would throw an egg from across the room and we had to catch it. Pressure was on. We only had one person drop an egg so I’d so we were pretty successful. I’ll put the recipe here in case any of you want to try making the bread (definitely worth it, highly recommend).


After prepping our bread for baking, we all made our way over to a cute, little barn. These tiny puppies were all snuggled up in a stack of hay with their mom. Everyone was pretty preoccupied with the puppies, but most people still made time to milk the cow. That was a first for me. It was very weird to say the least given that I’ve never done it before. There were all sorts of other farm animals, but my personal favorites were the donkeys and horses. The donkeys were named “Shrek,” “Fiona,” and “Donkey” which was incredible. The animals kept us entertained for quite a while before we moved onto the next activity.


Next up was learning a traditional Irish Jig, an upbeat, folk tune accompanied by a dance. We learned the dance slowly, step-by-step, instructed by Debbie. This was without a doubt my favorite part of the day. I think I was laughing nonstop the entire dance. We all really got into it and gave it our best effort, but despite that we still struggled a bit.


The Bodhran is a traditional Irish frame drum that’s about 16 inches in diameter. Debbie showed us how to hold the drum and we learned a few jigs and a couple reels as well. I’m not the most coordinated person so this part of the day was a bit trickier for me haha. I was able to get away with my lacking skills because there were so many of us playing.


Lunch time!!! For lunch, we were served an Irish meal and we got to eat our warm, home-baked bread. It was so incredible oh my gosh I was amazed. Lunch consisted of a salad, a carrot soup, ham, and scones. 10/10 would recommend.


They called it the fastest sport on grass and I can’t say they’re wrong. It seemed to me like a cross between field hockey and lacrosse because you pass the ball in the air with an oddly shaped field hockey stick. Apparently it’s a very physical sport, but we didn’t really get too aggressive with it. We learned the basic skills of passing and getting the ball off the ground. I can’t say I really thrived in this sport, but nonetheless it was so much fun.


This was the weirdest thing I’ve seen in a while. A bog is basically a wetland that sucked you in like quicksand if you got too deep. It looks like mud, but was kind of bouncy when you first stepped on it before you started sinking down into the ground. It was also very very cold. I’m struggling to describe how strange the consistency of this stuff was, but definitely try going into a bog if you get the chance… its quite the experience.

Causey Farm is a very homey place that teaches you a whole lot about traditional Irish culture. I would highly recommend making a trip out there. The farm itself is so beautiful and the people are so kind as well. Thanks for reading and stay tuned for a post about our day trip to Wicklow coming soon J

Grace Heart studied abroad in Dublin, Ireland, in Summer 2017: