We are often emailed requests for information on Dublin as many visitors to Ireland spend at least a few days in our Capital city. As a result we have now produced a list of many of the things to see and do while in Dublin. We hope you find it of assistance and we would be pleased to hear from you if there are any other places of interest you think should be added to our list. Email us at We would also like to hear any hints, tips, etc. you have for other readers on any of the places you have visited here or trips you have taken, together with your opinion on how worth while (or not) it was. Once again, just email us at the above address.
We suggest you print the pages here and take them with you on your trip to Ireland so that you have all the contact numbers and website addresses to hand. Or better still, print them before you come to Ireland, check the places you want to see and then with a map of Dublin, make out your own itinerary in the comfort of your own home.
The telephone numbers given are for dialing when IN Dublin. For outside Dublin but still in Ireland, or from a mobile/cell, add 01 to the front of the number. If dialing from outside ireland, drop the first zero and add 00353 to the front of the remaining numbers.
We have not given times and dates of opening times as these are subject to change and therefore you should email via their site or telephone to confirm times.
Note: Where we have the information, we have marked sites & buildings suitable for wheelchair access with .
Note: We have tried to note whether or not there is an admission fee to each place here. Where admission is free there may be a Donations Box there and if you have enjoyed your visit you can leave a small donation.
Note: If you intend to visit buildings of historic interest while in Ireland you should purchase a Heritage Card as this entitles you to free or discounted entrance fees to many places. You can read about the card and buy on line at www.heritageireland.ie
'The Chester Beatty Library, one of Ireland's National Cultural Institutions, was created by Sir Alfred Chester Beatty and bequeathed by him to a trust for the benefit of the public. The library is both an art museum and library, housing an outstanding collection of Islamic manuscripts, Chinese, Japanese, Indian and other Oriental art. Early papyri, including some of the earliest texts of the Bible and other Christian manuscripts, western prints and printed books complete what is one of the richest collections of it's kind in the world'.
'This popular tour of some of the most interesting 'watering holes' in the capital has grown in popularity over the past 12 years. Starting at the Duke pub in Duke Street, just off Grafton Street, the tour menanders it's way around some of the pubs associated with Dublin's famous writers. A team of actors perform from their works 'in situ'. Two and a half hours of great fun, some liquid refreshments and the works of Joyce, O'Casey, Behan, Yeats and more'. READ OUR REVIEW
'The museum opened in 1991 to house a history and celebration of literary Dublin. Situated in a magnificent 18th century mansion in the north city centre, the collection featues memorabilia and rare copies of works by the likes of Swift, Sheridan, Wilde, Shaw, Yeats, Becket, and Seamus Heaney. The museum holds exhibitions and readings and has a special room devoted to children's literature.'
'Graphic Sudio Dublin encompasses both the Graphic Studio Gallery in Dublin's Temple Bar and the Graphic Studio Workshop off Hanover Quay. The Graphic Studio Gallery is the oldest gallery in Dublin dealing exclusively in original contemporary prints. The gallery's stock includes etchings, lithographs, woodblocks, screenprints, monoprints and carborundum prints by over 150 Irish and international artists. The Graphic Studio Workshop, which is primarily a print Studio was established in 1961. It provides professional working facilities and studio Space, at an affordable cost, to Ireland's leading printmakers. The workshop operates a 'Visiting Artists Scheme', where prominent artists are invited to make prints in the studio. Artists who have participated include: Tony O'Malley, Michael Cullen, Charlie Cullen, Elizabeth Blackadder, William Crozier, Felim Egan and Gwen O'Dowd.'
'The Green Gallery is probably Ireland's most popular retail gallery. Works by well known contemporaties such as Graham Knuttel, Jonathan Knuttel, Peter Knuttel, Arthur K. Maderson, Stephen Cullen, Alan Kenny, Ross Eccles, Norman Teeling, Niall O'Loughlin and Diarmuid Boyd to name but a few can be seen seven days a week in the gallery. The gallery is extremely accessible, being situated on the top floor of the St. Stephen's Green Centre, which is on the corner of fashionable Grafton Street and St. Stephen's Green in the very heart of cosmopolitan Dublin.'
ADMISSION FREE (commercial gallery).
HUGH LANE (ART) GALLERY ~ Parnell Square North, Dublin 1. Tel: 01-2225550. www.hughlane.ie'Located in Dublin's city centre, the Hugh Lane Gallery, which is funded by Dublin Corporation, houses one of Ireland's foremost collections of modern and contemporary art. The original collection, donated by the Gallery's founder, Sir Hugh Lane, has now grown to include almost 2,000 artworks, ranging from the Impressionist masterpieces of Manet, Monet, Renoir and Degas to works by leading national and international contemporary artists. The Gallery also has a dynamic temporary exhibitions programme which encourages contemporary dialogue, often encompassing the permanent collection, as well as exploring the new expression in multimedia. The Gallery also stages historical and retrospective exhibitions, particularly or Irish art.'
IRISH MUSEUM OF MODERN ART ~ Royal Hospital, Kilmainham, Dublin 8. Tel: 01-6129900 www.modernart.ie
'Built between 1680 and 1684, it is the first great building in the Classical style to have been erected in Ireland. A wide variety of contemporary art is presented here in a range of challenging exhibitions'.
JAMES JOYCE CENTRE ~ 35 North Great George's Street, Dublin 2. Tel: 01-8788547. www.jamesjoyce.ie
'The Centre is dedicated to promoting an understanding of the life and works of James Joyce and aims to provide a unique, personal view of the man, his work and his minutely observed origins. For the novice the Centre aims to provoke curiosity and equip with some tools when approaching the work. Evoking period and place, it provides an intimate and accessible introduction to James Joyce and the heroic commonplace still evident in his city. For the student and scholar, we hope to be an obliging conduit - for a casual browser, and elusive footnote, a wuery on topography or simply a pleasant afternoon's research. The Centre is an active, vibrant and ever evolving tribute to one of the world's most profound surveyors of the human landscape, a starting point from which to begin a personal odyssey through Joyce's life, works and source of inspiration'.
JAMES JOYCE MUSEUM ~ The Joyce Tower, Sandycove, Co Dublin. Tel: 01-2809265
'The James Joyce Tower was one of a series of Martello towers built to withstand and invasion by Napoleon and now holds a museum devoted to the life and works of James Joyce, who made the tower and the setting for the first chapter of his masterpiece, Ulysses. Beautifully located eight miles south of Dublin on the coast road, this tower is the perfect setting for a museum dedicated to Joyce, a writer of international renown who remains, world-wide, the writer most associated with Dublin. Joyce's brief stay here inspired the opening of his great novely Ulysses. The gun platform with it's panoramic view, and the living room inside the tower are much as he described them in his book. The museum's collection includes letters, photographs, first and rare editions and personal possessions of Joyce, as well as items associated with the Dublin of Ulysses.'
'The National Gallery of Ireland was established by an Act of Parliment in 1854 and first opened it's doors to the public in January 1864. Today the collection boasts some 2,500 paintings and approximately 10,000 other works in different media including watercolours, drawings, prints and sculpture. Every major European School of painting is extensively represented. It also houses renowned collections of Irish paintings, the majority of which are on permanent display. There is a Yeats Museum with works by Jack B. Yeats, his father John Butler, and other members of this artistic family. It is also home to the National Portrait Collection.'
ADMISSION FREE to permanent collection. FEE may apply to exhibitions in Millenium Wing
NATIONAL LIBRARY OF IRELAND ~ Kildare Street, Dublin 2. Tel: 01-6030200. www.nli.ie
'The National Library of Ireland is a cultural institution under the aegis of the Department of Arts, Sports & Tourism. It's mission is to collect, preserve and make available books, manuscripts and illustrative material of Irish interest. Users of the Library have a wide variety of interests. They can include those engaged in long-term research with a view to a book or article and those with a specific once off need. The National Library is open, free of charge, to all that want and need to use it. A Reader's Ticket is necessary in order to consult most categories of material. The Library does not lend books and reading is done in the various reading rooms. There is also a copying service and it is possible to get photocopies, photographs, slides, or microfilm of most of the items in the collections. The Library has an ongoing programme of exhibitions. Donations of material are always most welcom; in addition, those wishing to make financial contribution towards the works of the National Library by donation or bequest may do so through the National Library of Ireland Trust. There is also a support group, the National Library of Ireland Society, which is concerned with promoting and publicising the Library. Membership is open to all those with an interest in the Library and the heritage in it's care.'
NEPTUNE (ART) GALLERY ~ 41 South William Street, Dublin 2. Tel: 01-6715021.
'One of Dublin's smaller galleries offers the visitor a different experience.'
ADMISSION FREE (commercial gallery)
OSCAR WILDE HOUSE MUSEUM ~ 1 Merrion Square, Dublin 2. Tel: 01-6620281. www.amcd.ie
'Now owned by the American College, Dublin. Tours take place June, July and August.'
'Oisín Gallery was first established in 1978 and is located on Westland Row, in the heart of Dublin's museum district. Over the years, the gallery has established strong links with dealers, collectors, auctioneers and built it's reputation on representing exciting works by Irish and international artists. The gallery's priority has been to encourage and launch the careers of many established and emerging talents. As the gallery's stable of artists has increased, it has implemented important innovations in the buildingof a substantial cache of high calibre traditional and contemporary artists. Exhibitions and events are mounted every 4 - 6 weeks and two annual group shows are held in July and November. The galler offers contemporary works by emerging Irish and international artists such as Ronan Goti, Katy Simpson, Katherine Liddy, Alan Kenny, Gerard M. Burns, Thomas Halloran and Tina Spratt.'
'The RHA has a full exhibition programme in place in galleries which show work by leading Irish and international artists. Media covered includes paintings, drawing, installation, photography, sculpture and assemblage. The Ashford Gallery is a small gallery within the Academy which exhibits work by Academicians and artists who are unrepresented by commercial galleries.'
'The first home of George Bernard Shaw, the renowned playwright has been restored to it's Victorian elegance and charm, and has the appearance that the family have just gone out for the afternoon. The neat terraced house is as much a museum of Victorian Dublin domestic life as of the early years of one of Dublin's Nobel prize winners for literature: full of nostalgia and the atmosphere of another time. It was in this house that Shaw began to imagine the characters who would later feature in his writings, from the drawing-room where Mrs. Shaw held many musical evenings, to the front parlour and childrens' bedrooms'.
'Ardgillan is situated on the elevated coastline between Balbriggan and Skerries and is unique among Dublin's Regional Parks for the magnificent views it enjoys. The park consists of 194 acres of rolling pastureland, mixed woodland and gardens, overlooking the bay of Drogheda. Ardgillan, meaning high-wooded area, is a sanctuary for many species of mammals and birds. The Castle, the residence of Ardgillan, built in 1738 consists of two stories over a basement which extends out under the south lawns. The ground floor rooms of the Castle, accessible to wheelchair users, are furnished in Georgian/Victorian style and include the Morning Room, Dining Room and Library. The first floor area of the Castle is used for the annual programme of exhibitions and Ardgillan is also the home of a permanent exhibition of maps including the 17th century 'Down Survey of Ireland.
'The centre of 20th century commerce is one of the most striking of Dublin's 18th century buildings. Built in 1729 to house the Irish Parliament, it became redundant when the British and Irish parliaments were united in London, when the Irish parliament voted itself out of existence. It would be a shame to leave our noble city without spending a few moments in one of Europe's most unique chambers, the Irish House of Lords. In this magnificent chamber you can see the 18th century tapestries and a sparkling Irish crystal chandelier of 1,233 pieces dating form 1765. The Bank of Ireland Arts Centre, in an old bank armoury, Foster Place, is host to 'A Journey Through 200 Years of History', an exhibition which reflects the role played by the Bank of Ireland in the economic and social development of Ireland over the past 200 years.'
ADMISSION FREE to Art Exhibitions. TOUR FEE APPLIES for tour of the museum - not wheelechair accessible.
CARMELITE CHURCH WHITEFRIAR STREET ~ 56 Aungier Street, Dublin 2. Tel: 01-4758821.
'Whitefriar Street Church is one of the best known places of worship in the city. The Church is administered by the Carmelite Order. The current building dates to 1825. The Church is well known for it's many shrines and altars, the most famous of which is the Shrine containing the true remains of St. Valentine, given as a gift to Fr. Spratt by Pope Gregory XVI in 1835. Of importance to the City of Dublin is the Shrine and Irish Oak statue of Our Lady of Dublin who is principal protector of the City. There is also the Well of St. Albert of Sicily whose waters are believed to be curative. The Church also has a very fine choir who assist at the 11.30 am Liturgy on Sundays.
'Casino is located at Marino, just off the Malahide Road and only 3 miles north of the centre of Dublin. It was designed by Sir William Chambers as a pleasure house for James Caufield, 1st Earl of Charlemont. It is one of the finest 18th century neo-classical buildings in Europe. The Casino, meaning 'small house'. surprisingly contains a total of sixteen finely decorated rooms'.
'Viking Dublin's cathedral was built on this site about 1038, gaining it's present shape from 1172 in the new cathedral of Archbishop (later Saint) Laurence O'Toole and the Norman knight Richard de Clare ('Strongbow'). From his appointment in 1162 Archbishop Laurence had begun a reform of the cathedral's celtic tradtitions along European lines. Its canons became monks - Canon Regular of Saint Augustine. Its liturgy followed the use of Sarum (Sailsbury) England. In the 1530s reform again came from England. In accordance with accepted European political principle, when Henry VIII broke from Rome, the Irish Church, however reluctantly, had to follow suit - and a majority of the bishops did. In Christ Church the last Augustinian prior, Robert Paynswick, became the first dean'. You can read about their tours of the cathedral and it's crypt on their website.
CUSTOM HOUSE VISITORS CENTRE ~ Custom House Quay, Dublin 1. Tel: 01-8882538.
'The Custom House, designed by the renowned James Gandon, was completed in 1791 and is one of Dublin's fineste heritage buildings. It has played a unique role in Dublin's social, economic and political history over the past 200 years. The Visitors Centre is located in and around the Dome or Clock Tower area that contains the most important interior features to have survived the destruction of the buildings by fire in 1921 during one of the more dramatic events of the War of Independence. The Visitors Centre includes a Gandon Museum with information and displays on his life and works in Ireland; the history of the Custom House itself, including the 1921 fire and subsequent restoration and on the many Government offices and important characters who have had offices in the building in the two centuries since it was completed.'
'The award-winning Heritage Centre includes a 15th century medieval towerhouse, a 10th century Church and graveyard, a modern exhibition area and a vibrant art gallery. Scaled models and information panels with text written by local Tony Award winner, Hugh Leonard, vividly illustrate the history of the area. See the exhibition of James Joyce's Dalkey connections: Chapter Two of Ulysses is set in Dalkey. There are Heritage Trails and Historical Walks.'
'Dublin Castle is situated in the very heart of historic Dublin. In fact the city gets it's name from the Dubh Linn or Black Pool (dubh = black), on the site of the present Castle Gardens and Coach House. The Castle stands on the high ridge, the highest ground in the locality, at the junction of the River Liffey and it's tributary the (now underground) Poddle, which formed a natural boundary on two sides. It is very probable that the original fortification on this easily defended strategic site was a Gaelic Ringfort, which guarded the harbour, the adjacent Dubhlinn Ecclesiastical Centre and the four long distant roads that converged nearby'.
Built circa 1769 - 1779. 'The story of the Capital multi media exhibition traces the history and development of Dublin from the arrival fo the Normans to the present day. Included are many of the city's treasures such as the Lord Mayor's Chain of Office, the Mace, the Civic Sword, and specially commissioned art works.
DUBLINIA ~ St. Michael's Hill, Christchurch, Dublin 8. Tel: 01-6794611 www.dublinia.ie
'Explore Dublin's medieval history at this popular exhibition. The Dublinia and the Viking World exhibitions are amongst Dublin's most popular visitor attractions. The exhibitions reveal facinating glimpses of the Viking and medieval past using reconstructions, audio-visual, aretefacts and interactive displays. Superbly researched and imaginatively presented, there is something here to interest everyone. The exhibition is housed in a beautiful ne-Gothic building, formerly the Church of Ireland Synod Hall, linked to Christ Church Cathedral by an elegant covered bridge, one of the city's landmarks. Owned by the Medieval Trust, a charitable trust, income generated from the Dublinia exhibition is used to fund the ongoing preservation of this beautiful building.'
'Designed by Dáithí Hanly and dedicated to the memory of all those who gave their lives in the cause of Irish Freedom. The large sculpture by Oisín Kelly is based on the theme of the 'Children of Lir'. The garden is intended as a place of quiet remembrance and reflection'.
'Glasnevin Cemetary is the largest cemetery in Ireland and the first of it's kind. The cemetery embodies the history of Ireland through it's story and the famous men and women buried here. From the opening of it's gates in 1832 right through to it's most recent events - the State Funerals of Kevin Barry and his comrades on October 2001, Glasnevin Cemetary has acted as Ireland's National Cemetery and is the final resting place of those who have helped shape modern Ireland'.
READ OUR REVIEW
ADMISSION FREE & TOUR FREE. (However, some areas may not be negotiable in a wheelchair).
'In just two hours, this award-winning and entertaining 'seminar on the street' conducted by history graduates of Trinity College, explores the main features of Irish history - Dublin's development, the influence of the American and French Revolutions, the potato Famine 1845-49, the 1916 Rising, the War of Independence, partition - and concludes with the current peace process'.
TOUR FEE APPLIES
IRISH JEWISH MUSEUM ~ Walworth Road, Portobello, South Circular Road, Dublin 8. Tel: 01-4901857 or 01-4531797
'The Museum is located in a former Synagog, with it's original features and preserves memorabilia relating to Irish Jewry, displaying their important though small, place in Ireland's cultural and historic heritage. The collection includes photographs, paintings, certificates, books and artefacts concerning all aspects of Jewish life. In addition to a general display covering the last 15 years of professional, commercial, artisitic and social activity of the Jewish community, the original kitchen recreates a typical Sabbath meal setting of the early 1900s. It was opened in 1985 by Irish born President of Israel, Chaim Herzog, and the museum also houses memorabilia relating to the Herzog family.
(There is one small step but this will be ramped and fully accessible (ground floor) from the end of April 2006).
'One of the largest unoccupied gaols in Europe, Kilmainham was built in 1796. Witness to Ireland's turbulent passage from the late 18th century to the early 20th century. Prisoners from the United Irish Rebellion of 1796, the Emmet Rebellion of 1803, the Great Famine of 1845 - 1851, the Young Ireland Rebellion of 1848, the Fenian Rebellion of 1867, the Land War of the 1880s, the Easter Rising of 1916, the War of Independence and the Irish Civil War were held and often executed here.'
(OUR REVIEW TO FOLLOW SHORTLY)
LUSK HERITAGE CENTRE ~ www.heritageireland.ie'Lusk Heritage Centre comprises of a round tower, a medieval belfry and a19th century church. They form a unit, although they were built over a period of almost a thousand years. The belfry now houses an exhibition on medieval churches of North County Dublin and also the magnificent 16th century effigy tomb of Sir Christopher Barnewall and his wife Marion Sharl'.
MALAHIDE CASTLE ~ Malahide, County Dublin. Tel: 01-8462184
'Set on 250 acres of parkland in the pretty North Dublin seaside town of Malahide, the castle was both a fortress and a private home for nearly 800 years. It is furnished with beautiful period furniture together with an extensive collection of Irish portrait paintings'. Note: this Castle is also visited with the North Coast & Castle Tour (see below).
Also at Malahide Castle: Fry Model Railway Museum and Tara's Palace
FRY MODEL RAILWAY MUSEUM ~ Malahide Castle, Malahide, Co Dublin. Tel: 01-8463779.
'The Fry Model Railway is a unique collection of handmade models of Irish trains, from the beginning of rail travel to modern times. Situated in the beautiful grounds surrounding Malahide Castle, this delightful collection is a treat for railway enthusiasts, children and adults alike'.
TARA'S PALACE ~ Malahide Castle, Malahide, Co Dublin.
'Tara's Palace is undoubtedly one of the world's most significant Dolls Houses. Inspired by Sir Neville Wilkinson's celebrated Titania's Palace of 1907, Ron and Doreen McDonnell sought to recapture the spirit and purpose of Sir Neville when they began the creation of their own masterpiece, Tara's Palace, in 1980''
'Mary Gibbons operates the Newgrange and Hill of Tara tour that also includes a trip to the River Boyne and the Hill of Slane'.
TOUR FEE APPLIES
1916 REBELION WALKING TOUR OF DUBLIN ~ Tel: 086-8583847 www.1916rising.com
'Lorcan Collins and Conor Kostick, authors of The Easter Rising, and Shane MacThomais will take you to the relevant sites of the Rebellion in Dublin, Ireland, to give you an understanding of this historic occasion which precipitated the formation of the Irish Republic'.
'Former school run by Patrick Pearse, now a museum in beautiful grounds. Attractions include exhibitions, a nature study room with attractive displays on Irish flora and fauna and an audio-visual show entitled: This Man Kept a School. The museum is set in St. Enda's Park which is one of Dublin city's most charming and atmospheric parks, with it's riverside walks, waterfall and walled garden'.
'A lively and entertaining exhibition on the history and wildlife of the Phoenix Park is on display in the Visitors Centre. Here the visitor can enjoy an historical interpretation of the park from 3500 BC to the present day and can also view an audio-visual presentation on the Phoenix Park through the ages. Adjoining the Visitors Centre is the fully restored Ashtown Castle, a medieval tower house that probably dates from the 17th century'.
'The date of the foundation of the Castle is uncertain, but recent research would suggest 1583 as the most likely date. It was built by Adam Loftus, a Yorkshireman. The Castle has a colourful and interesting history with 18th centure interiors by Sir William Chambers and James Athenian Stuart and was declared a National Monument in the mid-1980s. The Castle is presented to visitors as a castle undergoing active conservation. The visitors can see, first hand, tantalizing glimpses of layers of the Castle's earlier existence uncovered during research'.
'Sited in the heart of the walled medieval city, St. Audoen's Church is the only remaining medieval parish church in Dublin. It is dedicated to St. Oeun the 7th century bishop of Rouen and patron saint of Normandy. The Guild Chapel of St. Ann houses an exhibition on the importance of St. Audeon's Church in the life of the medieval city. Visitors will be able to see the part of the church still in use by the Church of Ireland as a parish church. They can also view the recently restored 17th century memorials to the Sparke and Duff families and the 15th century effigal tomb to Baron Portlester and his wife'.
'Dedicated in 1825 before Catholic emancipation was fully effected, St. Mary's is Dublin's Catholic Cathedral. It's backstreet site was the best the city's Anglo-Irish leaders would allow. The facade is based on the Temple of Theseus in Athens. It's six Doric columns support a pediment with statues of St. Laurence O'Toole, 12th century Archbishop of Dublin and patron saint of the city, St. Mary, and St. Patrick. In 1904 the great tenor, John McCormack, began his career with the Palestrina Choir here.' The Palistrina Choir performs here each Sunday at the Latin mass at 11am. During 2006 to celebrate the 250th anniversary of Mozart's birth, they will perform 10 Mozart Masses, dates of which can be found on the cathedral's website (above).
ST. MICHAN'S CHURCH ~ Church Street, Dublin 8. Tel: 01-8724154.
St. Michan's (pronounced Mi-kans) was built in 1685/6 and restored to it's present state in 1825. However, the church is built on the remains of a much older Danish church circa 1095. It is named after a Danish bishop. St. Michan's is the oldest North side parish church and for many centuries was the only church North of the River Liffey. The organ, built in 1723, in the gallery of the church is the oldest working organ in Ireland and it said that it was on this organ, Handel practised, if not composed his 'Messiah', he having been living nearby. There is a panel on the front of the organ, made of a single piece of wood, with carvings of seventeen musical instruments. In 1922 al the windows of the church were blown out after a bomb went off in the nearby Four Courts. These were replaced by plain glass and then in 1958 a new window depicting designs from the Book of Kells was installed and dedicated. This replacement window was taken from St. Matthais' Church on the Adelaide Road. In the church too you can see an 18th century pulpit and font, and an oak 'moving desk' or Penitent's Pew (where penitents were made confess their sins in public). The church is owner of many fine church artefacts such as a Chalice dating from 1516, and this together with many other valuable items are now stored in Christ Church Cathedral. St. Michan's is probably most famous for it's vaults. These vaults are constructed of magnesium limestone, making them very dry, a result of which the bodies contained there are all mummified. Tours are taken into the vaults where the visitor can view these mummified remains. The three on display are of a 12th century nun, a body with it's hands and feet removed (said to be a thief), and a Crusader whose body is probably one of the tallest in Ireland, he having been 8' tall his body having to be cut through in the middle so that he could fit in his coffin. Visitors to the vaults touch the Crusaders hand for luck. There are small rooms in the vault, closed off by iron gates, through which one can see the coffins of many families including Oliver Bond who took part in the 1798 Rising, Henry and John Sheares, leaders of the 1798 Rebellion, and the Earls of Leitrim. In the Earls of Leitrim vault you can see the very decorated coffins of this family, however the first Earl who was a tyrant is afforded only the plainest of coffins which indicates that his family did not think too highly of him either. The funeral service of Charles Stewart Parnell took place here prior to his removal for burial to Glasnevin Cemetary.
ADMISSION FREE to church
TOUR FEE APPLIES for guided tour of the vaults (not suitable for wheelchair users there are some steps down to the crypt).
'Built on the oldest Christian site in Dublin, St. Patrick's Cathedral more than any other building in Ireland, embodies the history and heritage of the Irish people from the earliest times to the present day. The Celtic, Anglo-Norman, Medieval and Anglo-Irish traditions are all reflected within it's walls. It still continues the function for which it was founded - the daily offering of worship to Almighty God through the medium of great music. Living Stones explores the long history of the Cathedral in an exhibition divided into four main sections. St. Patrick's Cathedral is Ireland's largest church and was founded beside a sacred well where St. Patrick is said to have baptised converts around 450 AD. A stone slab bearing a Celtic cross and covering the well was un-earthed at the turn of the 20th century. It is now preserved in the west end of the Cathedral's nave. The original building was just a wooden chapel and remained so until 1192 when Archbishop John Comyn rebuilt the Cathedral in stone. Much of the present building dates back to work completed between 1254 and 1270'. Johnathan Swift, author of Gulliver's Travels was once Dean of St. Patrick's Cathedral and it is here too he is buried.
TREASURES OF CHRIST CHURCH ~ Christchurch Place, Dublin 8. Tel: 01-6778099 'Discover how the Vikings built Christchurch Cathedral and view the magnificent gold given by William of Orange after the Battle of the Boyne at this new exhibition. Also on show is the recently refurbished medieval crypt'.
TRINITY COLLEGE ~ College Green, Dublin 2. Tel: 01-6082308
'The famous Book of Kells, one of the oldest books in the world, is the main tourist attraction at this historic college and includes a visit to the Long Library. Founded in 1592 by Elizabeth the first of England, the college boasts many legendary past students, including playwrights Wilde, Synge, Beckett to name but a few.'
BOOKFAIR ~ Temple Bar, Dublin. Saturdays.
'The Book Fair is on at the same time on Saturdays in Temple Bar Square. There are all kinds of books here from collector's items to sci-fi to potboilers to niche interests, so come down and have a rummage.'
'CoCo Markets is an initiative organised on behalf of Dun Laoghaire Rathdown County Council. Three gourmet artisan markets on the south side of Dublin. The CoCo Markets take place in Dalkey on Fridays, Marlay Park on Saturdays, and Dun Laoghaire People's Park on Sundays. Jackie Spillane has organised the CoCo Markets in conjuction with the Dun Laoghaire Rathdown County Council. Every stallholder at the CoCo Markets is thoroughly vetted by Jackie. She insists on selling 100% wholesome ingredients and organic produce. The emphasis focuses on sustainability rather than profit making, the objective is to create a better awareness of the benefits of organic food and the use of wholesome ingredients to customers. The CoCo Markets offer a genuine interaction between customer and vendor.'
COW'S LANE MARKET, Cow's Lane, Old City, Templebar ~ Saturdays: 10 - 5.30
'Dublin's first fashion and design market features a wealth of once off and unusual pieces from up and coming designers'.
MERRION SQUARE ~ Sundays ~ 'Local artists display and sell their paintings'.
'For those early birds and those interested in architecture head to Smithfield Market. The market begins at 7am and runs until 3 pm Monday ~ Saturday. It is a good way to experience the heart of Dublin's medieval district.' Note: this area is now under development, the fishmarket part having been knocked down. However the old fruit market hall still stands and is worth going to just to look at the lovely building. The fruit market is due to be moved out of here and in it's place will be coffee shops, various other shops, etc. so go now while you can still see the 'old ways'. The market is just behind the Four Courts building. For a real old fashioned experience, just pop into the cafe there ~ batch bread and butter with a pot of tea and homemade chips (fries).
WOLFE TONE MARKETS ~ Jervis Street, Dublin 'The Wolfe Tone Markets alternate every Friday and Saturday offering shoppers a wide variety of wonderful products. Every Friday between 10am and 4pm the Gourmet Food Market in Wolfe Tone park operates selling a wide selection of delicious and homemade foods. On Saturdays, the Wolfe Tone Market runs a Fair between 10am and 6pm. It is an Arts & Crafts fair and all the work is individually handcrafted by the stall-holders. Crafts range from ceramics, stained glass, paintings, drawings, photography, etchings, candle-making, potter, textile art, leather work and woodturning.'
GAA MUSEUM ~ Croke Park, St. Joseph's Avenue, Dublin 3. Tel: 01-8192323 www.crokepark.ie
'Croke Park is home to Ireland's unique national games of hurling and Gaelic football and the GAA Museum was established to commemorate, recognise and celebrate the GAA's contribution to Irish sporting, cultural and social life since it's foundation in 1884. The museum features historic exhibits, touchscreen technology, specially designed interactives that allow you to test your skills in hurling and Gaelic football, and stadium tours of Croke Park'.
'A State Heraldic Museum has been attached to the Office of Arms (now the Office of the Chief Herald) since 1909. It was the first such permanent museum in the world. Since 1987 it has been located at 2 - 3 Kildare Street where the office is now based. It's collection is a varied one and demonstrates the breath, development and application of heraldry in Ireland and Europe over the centuries.
NATIONAL MARITIME MUSEUM ~ Haigh Terrace, Dun Laoghaire, Co. Dublin. Tel: 01-2800969.
'The National Maritime Museum of Ireland installed in the Mariners Church, Haigh Street, combines a number of historical models including one of the great Eastern and a French longboat captured in Bantry in 1796.
NATIONAL MUSEUM OF IRELAND - ARCHAEOLOGY & HISTORY ~ Kildare Steet, Dublin 2. Tel: 01-6777444. www.museum.ie
'The National Museum of Ireland - Archaeology & History is the national repositry for all archaelogical objects found in Ireland. This museum houses over two million artefacts which range in date between 7000 BC and the late medieval period. Exhibitions include the finest collection of prehistoric gold artefacts in western Europe, outstanding examples of metalwork from the Celtic Iron Age, as well as the Museum's world-renowned collection of medieval ecclesiastical objects and jewellery. The Broighter Hoard, the Ardagh Chalice, the Tara Brooch and Derrynaflan Hoard are among the masterpieces on display. The Museum also houses a rich collection of Egyptian material and an historical exhibition which deals with the political background and events which culminated in the signing of the Anglo-Irish Treaty in 1921'.
NATIONAL MUSEUM OF IRELAND - DECORATIVE ARTS & HISTORY ~ Collins Barracks, Benburb Street, Dublin 7. Tel: 01-6777444. www.museum.ie
'The National Museum of Ireland - Decorative Arts & History is home to a wide range of objects which include weaponry, furniture, silver, ceramics and glassware, as well as examples of folklife and costume. The exhibitions have been designed in innovative and contemporary galleries. The Fonthill Vase, a Chinese porcelain vase made about 1300 AD, is one of the rarest pieces in the museum. The William Smith O'Brien Gold Cup, the Eileen Gray chrome table and the Lord Chancellor's Mace are also among the highlights'.
NATIONAL MUSEUM OF IRELAND - WHAT'S IN STORE ~ Collins Barracks, Benburb Street, Dublin 7. Tel: 01-6777444.
'There are now 10,000 extra reasons to visit the National Museum of Ireland - Decorative Arts & History at Collins' Barracks. For the first time in the history of the organisation the entire national reserve collections of silver, glass and oriental collections as well as a fraction of the Museum's Ceramics collection are on view in this new visable storage facility. 'What's In Store?' is a behind the scenes Museum experience rather than an exhibition.'
ADMISSION FREE (All on ground floor but passages between displays are not very wide).
NATIONAL MUSEUM OF NATURAL HISTORY ~ Merrion Street, Dublin 2. Tel: 01-6777444. www.museum.ie'The National Museum of Ireland - Natural History has approximately 10,000 animals on display which have been drawn from the museum's collections of over two million specimens. These collections have been accumulating for over two centuries. Today this zoological museum encompasses outstanding examples of wildlife from Ireland and the far corners of the globe, some still to be seen today and others long extinct.'
NATIONAL PHOTOGRAPHIC ARCHIVE ~ Meeting House Squre, Temple Bar, Dublin 2. Tel: 01-6030374. www.nli.ie
'The National Photographic Archive houses the photographic collection of the National Library of Ireland, of over 600,000 photographs. The collection can be viewed in the reading room, and an increasing selection are available online. While most of the collections are historical, there are also some contemporary collections. Subject matter ranges from topographical views to studio portraits and from political events to early tourist photographs. There is an on-going programme of exhibitions throughout the year.
NATIONAL PRINT MUSEUM ~ Garrison Chapel, Beggars Bush, Haddington Road, Dublin 4. Tel: 01-6603770.
'The National Print Museum was officially opened in 1996 in the former Garrison Chapel of Beggars Bush Barracks in Dublin 4. The museum has a collection of over 10,000 objects that cover the whole range of printing craft in Ireland. The collection comprises printing machinery and artefacts including printing blocks, metal and wooden moveable type, epemera, photographs, books, pamphlets, periodicals and one banner.
NATIONAL TRANSPORT MUSEUM ~ Howth Castle Demense, Howth, Co. Dublin. Tel: 01-8480831.
'The National Transport Museum was established by the Transport Museum Society of Ireland. This collection is Ireland's only comprehensive assembly of public and commercial road transport. A century separates the oldest of the sixty exhibits from the newest, recording the Golden Age of commercial vehicles. Many are the extinct makers, several are rare or unique, some are sole survivors of once familiar types.'
MUSICALDUBLIN ROCK AND STROLL TOUR ~ Tel: 01-6057700
'Dublin is among the most important music cities in the world, and to celebrate this, Dublin Tourism proudly presents an exciting Rock & Stroll Visitor Trail. This guide will take you around the significant sites in the development of the musical career of U2, the Corrs, Westlife, Sinead O'Connor, Bob Geldof, Chris de Burgh, The Chieftans, The Dubliners and many more'.
'Runs May ~ October Tuesday to Sunday inclusive. The night includes a meal while watching Irish singers and dancers perform'.
NATIONAL CONCERT HALL ~ Earlsfort Terrace, Dublin 2. Tel: 01-4170000 www.nch.ie
'Home to the National Concert Hall. Stages orchestral concerts throughout the year and also works with various promoters to stage operas, ballet, jazz concerts, musicals and various other musical productions'.
TRADITIONAL IRISH MUSIC PUB CRAWL ~ Tel: 00353-1-4753313 May~Oct: Nightly 7.30pm. Winter:Thurs/Fri/Sat 7.30pm
'This tour is led by two professional musicians who perform tunes and songs while telling the story of Irish music. Experience Dublin's famous pubs and musical tradition with a fun and informative night out'.
NATURE & PARKS
CROPPIES ACRES ~ Just across from Collins's Barracks. COMING SOON: HISTORY OF CROPPIES ACRE
The Zoological Society of Dublin was founded in 1830 with animals supplied by London Zoo. The Dublin Zoo of the 1830s was nothing like it is today. Its purpose was to show as many different kinds of animals as possible to people who had never seen anything like it'.
'Designed by Dáithí Hanly and dedicated to the memory of all those who gave their lives in the cause of Irish Freedom. The large sculpture by Oisín Kelly is based on the theme of the 'Children of Lir'. The garden is intended as a place of quiet remembrance and reflection'.
'The Iveagh Gardens are among the finest and least known of Dublin's parks and gardens. They were designed by Ninian Niven in 1863 and include a rustic grotto, cascade, fountains, maze, rosarium, archer grounds, wilderness and woodlands'.
'These colourful gardens cover a total area of 19.5 hectares, part of which is the natural flood plain of the river Tolka. The gardens contain a large plant collection which includes approximately 20,000 species and cultivars. There are four ranges of glasshouses including the recently restored Curvilinear Range. Notable features include herbaceous displays, rose garden, rockery, vegetable garden, arboretum, extensive shrub borders and wall plants'.
PEOPLES PARK ~ Dun Laoghaire, Co. Dublin
'The park consists of about 2 hectres and was opened in 1890. It has many landscape features including a variety of hedge species, mature trees such as sycamore and horsechestnut, a garden for the blind, and colourful herbaceous borders. The old Victorian Shelter is now the Park Tea Rooms, there are two cast iron fountains, a bandstand with origianl gaslight standards, a playground, etc.'
PHOENIX PARK ~ Dublin 8. Tel: 01-6770095
This is the larges urban park in Europe with a circumference of 11km (7 miles) and a total area of 712 hectares (1,760 acres). It has ornamental gardens, nature trails, lots of grassland with many trees including oak, beech, pine, chestnut and lime. There are deer roaming freely in the forested areas. The park is also the location of the President of Ireland's official residence, Áras an Úachtaraín.'
DILLON'S PARK & SORRENTO PARK ~ Dalkey, Co. Dublin.
'Dillon's Park (or Miss Dillon's Park) is so named because the lady once had Tea Rooms there. This is the site of the infamous 'Dalkey Gold Rush' of the 19th century caused by a local lady, Etty Scott, who dreamt that Viking gold was buried there.'
'Sorrento Park, opposite, was extensively restored in 1994 for the centenary year of it's dedication to public use by the former owner Lady McDonnell. She gave 1,000 year lease on the bulk of the property that is now Sorrento Park to the trustees who were members of the then 'Dalkey Amusements Committees' in 1894. It passed from them to Dun Laoghaire Corporation in 1932 and finally in 1994 to the present Dun Laoghaire Rathdown County Council. It was re-dedicated on the 4th of June 1994.'
ST. ENDA'S PARK ~ Rathfarnham, Dublin
'One of Dublin city's most charming and atmospheric parks, with it's riverside walks, waterfall and walled garden'. (See also PEARSE MUSEUM).
'Probably Ireland's best known Victorian public park. This 22 acre park is a sanctuary from the bustle of the city's streets with tree lined walks, shrubberies, colourful flowerbeds, herbaceous borders, rockeries, an ornamental lake and a garden for the visually impaired. Lunchtime concerts are performed during the summer months'.
'These gardens are one of the most famous memorial gardens in Europe. They are dedicated to the memory of 49,400 Irish soldiers who died in World War I. The names of all the soldiers are contained in the granite bookrooms in the Gardens. There gardens are not only a place of remembrance but are also of architectural interest and of great beauty. Designed by the famous architect, Sir Edwin Lutyens (1869-1944), they are one of four gardens in this country designed by him. Sunken rose gardens, herbaceous borders and extensive tree planting make for an enjoyable visit to the Gardens in any season'.
'The Abbey Theatre is Ireland's national theatre. It was founded by Nobel Laureate, William Butler Yeats and Lady Augusta Gregory in 1904 and has played a vital and often controversial role in the literary, socila and cultural life of Ireland. Renowned as a writer's theatre it has contributed some of the world's greatest theatrical works from such writers as J. M. Synge and Sean O'Casey through to modern day classics from Brian Friel, Tom Murphy, Frank McGuiness, Hugh Leonard, Tom MacIntyre and Sebastian Barry. The Abbey Theatre, along with it's smaller studio theatre, The Peacock, continues to nurture new writings as well as presenting international modern classics. As an icon of world theatre, The Abbey Theatre welcomes many overseas visitors every year'.
'The Civic Theatre offers a wealth of entertainment including Drama, Comedy, Ballet, Opera, Concerts, Childrens' Shows, contemporary dance and Musicals, all to great acclaim and plans for the future are equally ambitious'.
'Since its foundation in 1967, by the late Deirdre O'Connell, Focus Theatre has been at the forefront of training actors and directors in the Stanislavski system, as well as producing compelling productions of the classics of Europe and international theatre'.
'The Gate Theatre started life in 1786 as part of the Rotunda Hospital and was then known as the Assembly Rooms. The Gate Theatre company was founded in 1928 and it is said that Orsone Wells and James Mason began their careers there'.
'Ireland's only puppet theatre, established in 1972. Puppet theatre for all the family operates Saturdays and Sundays at 3.30pm. Programme changes every month. Hosts The International Puppet Festival each September.
OLYMPIA THEATRE ~ 72 Dame Street, Temple Bar, Dublin 2. Tel: 01-6793323. www.olympia.ie
'At more than 130 years old, the Olympia Theatre is the oldest theatre in Dublin. While still maintaining its roots in professional theatrical productions, in recent years it has developed into one of Dublin's most famous music venues'.
'The Pavilion Theatre opened it's doors to the public in 2000, and since then has successfully entertained thousands of people. The theatre is both a presenting and producing house and also runs a quality community, amateur and semi-professional programme, serving local groups'.
POINT THEATRE ~ East Link Bridge, Dublin 1. Tel: 01-8363633. www.thepoint.ie
'Concert venue located approximately 30 minutes walk from O'Connell Street'.
PROJECT ~ 39 East Essex Street, Temple Bar, Dublin 2. Tel: 01-679662. www.project.ie
'Project is an artist-centred venue whose purpose is to foster innovative work. Project presents a year round programme of visual arts, theatre, dance music and forums for critical debate'.
'Learn more about Bram Stoker, the author of the world's biggest selling novel, Dracula, which has inspired over 200 films and has had an incalculable influence on the world of performing arts in general'.
'Tours of Dublin city, Wicklow, and the Boyne Valley taking in New Grange'.
CHIEF O'NEILLS CHIMNEY VIEWING TOUR ~ Smithfield Village, Dublin 7. Tel: 01-8173838. www.chiefoneills.com
'This exclusive Chimney Viewing Tower, once a 185 foot chimney for Jamesons Distillery provides the perfect viewing platform for Ireland's favourtie city. Marvel at the spectacular views with a professional tour guide taking you through the forgotten history of Dublin'.
'The Storehouse builidng was completed in 1904. This incredible building was constructed in the style of the Chicago School of Architecture, its massive steel beams providing the structure of the building. The Storehouse was used to house the fermentation process in which yeast is added to the beer. The core of the GUINNESS@STOREHOUSE building is a giant glass pint, stretching up from the Reception on the Ground Floor to Gravity, the bar in the sky. Every floor is flooded with light, creating an impressive feeling of space. If full, the giant pint could hold approximately 14.3 million pints of Guinness!'
READ OUR REVIEW
GHOST BUS TOUR ~ 59 Upper O'Connell Street, Dublin 1. Tel: 01-6057704. www.dublinbus.ie
'Let us put you at your unease on the world's only Ghostbus, and introduce you to the dark romance of a city of gaslight ghosts and chilling legends. Your guide will weave his spell and spirit you away to meet the felons, fiends and phantoms who reach out across a thousand years of Dublin's troubled history. You'll pass haunted houses, learn of Dracula's Dublin oriigins and we'll even throw in a crash course in body-snatching. Near journey's end the lights go out and darkness invites the macabre traditions of the Irish wake. Your host - one blessed with the 'gift of the gab' - will conclude the tour by explaining the meaning of life - and death! - Irish-style'.
REVIEW COMING SHORTLY
TOUR FEE APPLIES
HOP ON/HOP OFF TOURS ~ 59 Upper O'Connell Street, Dublin 1. Tel: 01-6057704. www.dublinbus.ie
'The best way to view all that Dublin has to offer is by open-top bus. Sit back and enjoy your 1 hour 15 minute fully-guided tour. The tour operates daily from 9.30 am and can be joined at any of the 21 stops, each located near one of Dublin's most popular attracts. Buses operate frequently and your 24 hour tour ticket allows you to hop on and off as often as you wish'. There are 21 stops en route and they are: Start: Cathal Brugha Street, Carroll's Gift Shop, Trinity College, Nassau Street (lots of tourist shops), National Gallery, Natural History Museum, St. Stephen's Green, Tourism Centre, Temple Bar, Dublin Castle, Christ Church Cathedral, St. Patrick's Cathedral, Guinness Storehouse, Museum of Modern Art, Parkgate Street, Phoenix Park (Dublin Zoo), National Museum (Collins Barracks), Old Jameson & The Chimney (Chief On'Neill's), O'Connell Bridge, Dublin Bus HQ, Parnel Square (Writers Museum). Most of these have been written about above.
(NOTE: Our hint is to do the entire loop of the tour first to hear all the information and then start your hop on hop off visits. Your fee includes a set of discounty vouchers for the places where entry fees apply en route. Make sure you get the discount tickets for each of your party).
TOUR FEE APPLIES
NORTH COAST & CASTLE TOUR ~ 59 Upper O'Connell Street, Dublin 1. Tel: 01-6057704. www.dublinbus.ie
'This tour of Dublin's northern coastline passes the tree lined Griffith Avenue and the Casino at Marino, before visiting stately Malahide Castle, dating from the 12th century, and set amid 250 acres of parkland and gardens. Here we stop for light refreshment and learn the facinating history of the Talbot family. Continuing through the Heritage town of Malahide, the tour will take you past magnificent coastal scenery to the picturesque fishing village of Howth. Crossing the nearby summit of Howth Head you will have a panoramic view of the huge expanse of Dublin Bay. Set against a backdrop of the Dublin and Wicklow mountains, the view is renowned as one of the world's great seascapes. The tour returns to Dublin via Dollymount Strand home of the Royal Dublin Golf Club and the North Bull Island bird sanctuary'.
TOUR FEE APPLIES
OLD JAMESON DISTILLERY ~ Bow Street Distiller, Smithfield, Dublin 7. Tel: 01-8072355 www.whiskeytours.ie
'The hour-long guided tour begins with a short video presentation on the history of Jameson whiskey followed by a guided tour of the old distillery, taking in the old copper stills, bottling line, fermentation vessels and all the other paraphenalia of whiskey manufacture. The tour then ends in true Irish style with a tasting session'.
'The well-known Dublin historian, author and artist, has developed a unique walking tour service for Dublin. Covering the inner city and, by advance request, the coastal villages, waterways, hills, and intriguing suburbs, the tours are compiled by Pat Liddy himself based on his years of experience, historical research and the collection of anecdotal and legendary stories of Ireland's Capital City'.
'We have two tours available, one from the city centre and one from Malahide Marina on the north side of Dublin Bay. Both tours last one hour and fifteen minutes approximately. We have three boats in operation each with a capacity for 12 passengers. Sea Safari operates tours all year round. Tour highlights include the historic Lambay Island to the North where it is said the Vikings first landed before reaching the shores of the mainland, picturesque Killiney Bay to the South where you can see the house of the rich and famous from the sea, the towering Bailey Lighthouse, the beautiful island of Ireland's Eye at Howth with it's unique colony of Gannets and Howth Head which provides stunning scenery'.
SOUTH COAST & GARDENS TOUR ~ 59 Upper O'Connell Street, Dublin 1. Tel: 01-6057704. www.dublinbus.ie
'Dublin's beautiful south coast is seen at it's best from a double-deck touring bus. Along the great sweep of Dublin Bay, past Dun Laoghaire's elegant promenade and yacht-filled harbour, to James Joyce's Tower at Sandycove the sea views are unsurpassed. Turning inland, the tour climbs into the beautiful Wicklow Mountains and continues through the enchanting old-world village of Enniskerry to Powerscourt Estate. Powerscourt estate, in it's spectacular mountain setting, is among the finest in Europe and has featured in many films from Laurence Olivier's 'Henry V' to Mel Gibson's 'Braveheart'. You'll have lots of time to explore the grounds to see the Italian, Japanese and walled gardens and the poignant pets' cemetery. Before returning to Dublin the tour passes through the dramatic geographical fault known as The Scalp and the ever-changing scenery of Wicklow and Dublin Mountains'.
'Join us for a fun and completely unique tour of Dublin by land and water in our reconditioned World War II vintage amphibious military vehicles called 'Ducks'. Our costumed and colourful Viking Tour Captains will tell you all about the most exciting sights in Dublin: how the Vikings first settled in the City over 1,000 years ago and how Dublin has become a thriving, cosmopolitan European city. Finally, you'll experience a real thrill as our Tour Captain drives the Duck into the waters of the historic Grand Canal Basin for the water portion of the tour. You may even be asked to give a Viking Splash Tours roar at passers by!'
We are including a section on County Wicklow as there is plenty to see and do here and it is only a short DART (light train) trip from Dublin (19 km).
BRAY HERITAGE CENTRE ~ Old Courthouse, Bray, Co. Wicklow. Tel: 01-2867128
'The static exhibits in Bray Heritage Centre are set around the theme People, Places and Things showcased against a Walkaround map of Bray. There are text and artefacts from the Cambrian era to the present day, including Bray, drowned forest, the river, the first settlers, new Bray and the coming of the railway. The mezzanine level consists of an Art Exhibition area which is used for a variety of special exhibitions.'
BRAY SEAFRONT ROADTRAIN ~ Tel: 01-2866796
'Bray Seafront Roadtrain is a miniature train, resplendent in bright red, deep green and shining gold, built to carry some 54 passengers in it's open-sided carriages. Its regular run is from one end of Bray's mile long seafront to the other. Starting from the harbour area, it travels along the Strand Road, past the National Aquarium, to the foot of Bray Head, returning via Bray's Victorian promenade. This, however, is only the basic journey for the 'great little train'. It also makes regular trips to Bray's Heritage Centre, located in the town's former Court House, beside the bridge that spans the Dargle River, dividing the 'Big' and 'Little Bray'.'
'The name Glendalough derives from the Irish Gleann Da Loch meaning Glen of the Two Lakes, after the upper and lower lakes nestled in this glacial valley. The location of a 6th century monastic settlement, it is one of the most picturesque sites in Ireland and easily accessible from Dublin. Founded by St. Kevin, Glendalough began as a hermitage but expanded over the following centuries until it was an established centre for learning, known throughout Europe. During that time, one of it's most famous scholars was St. Laurence O'Toole, who went on to become archbishop of Dublin in the 12th century. Although the settlement came under attack from Vikings on several occasions, it wasn't until 1398 that the settlement was finally destroyed by English forces. Today, the most impressive sight remaining is the 34 metre high round tower, which has become one of Ireland's most enduring images. The tower dates from some time between the 9th and 12th centuries, as do most of the surviving buildings, including the cathedral, stone churches and decorated crosses. Visitors to the area will find the Glendalough Visitors Centre for information on the history of the area, and monastic settlements in Ireland. Walks around the upper and lower lake there are popular, and visitors may want to stroll up to St. Kevin's Bed, the cave where St. Kevin allegedly lived, which is situated just above the upper lake.'
'Just outside the picturesque village of Enniskerry, Powerscourt Estate dates from the mid-eighteenth century. The house was built for Richard Wingfield, a descendant of Sir Richard Wingfield, and a member of the Protestant Ascendancy of the time. Designed by German architect Richard Cassels in 1740, the house was built around an existing castle which dated from 1300. Unfortunately, the house was gutted by a fire in 1974 just before it was due to be opened to the public. It was renovated and much of it's interior is now open to the public and available for hire for wedding parties. The surrounding gardens which span 20 hectares were begun in the 18th century, but most of what we see today dates from the 19th century. Five terraces drop down to Triton lake, with the Sugarloaf mountain in the background. The gardens also contained an Edwardian Japanese garden and a pet cemetery. Powerscourt Waterfall is located just three miles from the gardens, and at a height of 400 feet, is the highest waterfall in Ireland and Britain. There is a nature trail around the base of the fall.
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