Daily Archives: September 19, 2010

A Tour of Ireland ~ Episode 3

Week Three and we are still in Dublin.  Check out Episode one again at your leisure, I have added some more general helpful hints to the list.


The official date of Dublin’s establishment was 988 A.D.  The area was first settled by the Vikings. Then followed the Danes who took control of the city. The city changed hands on several occasions until, in 1171, Henry II of England invaded and expelled the Danes. Over the centuries the city was home to turbulent times with continuous warfare, invasions, sieges, the black death, the potato famine, the war of independence and much more. Today it is one of Europe’s most vibrant Capital cities.

Historical Walking Tours (64 Mary Street Dublin 1)

Irish History in two hours. The historical walking tours of Dublin deal with the Potato Famine, the Easter Rising as well as the War of Independence. Meeting point is the Trinity College front gate.

Tour Hours:
May to September: Daily 11.00 & 15.00
April & October:    Daily 11.00
November to March: Friday-Sunday 11.00

General Post Office. (O’Connell Street, Dublin 1

The General Post Office became a symbol of 1916 Easter Rising, when it has been seized by members of the Irish Volunteers and Irish Citizen Army on Easter Monday. The Proclamation of the Irish Republic has been read out from the steps of the building by Patrick Pearse.

Famine Emigrants Sculptures (Custom House Quay, Dublin 1)
The emigrant sculptures were cast in memory of the hundreds of thousands of Irish people who were forced into emigration during the famine. With their few possessions they departed from Dublin docks to Liverpool with America as their final destination. The sculptures are located beside the Custom House on the riverside.

Leinster House (Kildare Street, Dublin 2)
The Leinster House has been the formal palace of the Duke of Leinster. The government bought it in 1924 for parliamentary use. Visitors may now visit the main rooms as well as the public gallery.
Admission is free

Dublin Castle ( Dame Street Dublin 2 )
Dublin Castle is a major tourist attraction. Based in Dublin city centre right between of the River Liffey and its tributary the Poddle. All historic buildings have been restored and may be visited – from the Medieval Tower to the Chester Beatty Library. The castles State Apartments today host Heads of State, Presidents and leaders of business, industry and government.

Chester Beatty Library [ Dublin Castle, Dublin 2 ]

The Chester Beatty Library is the Irish museum of the year 2000 and European museum of the year 2002. It was created by Sir Alfred Chester Beatty and is situated in the gardens of Dublin Castle. It is both, an art museum and a library with an outstanding range of Early Christian, Islamic and East Asian manuscripts and paintings.
Admission is free

Christ Church Cathedral [ High Street / Dublin Street Dublin 8 ]
The Christ Church Cathedral is Dublin’s oldest building and was founded by the Norse King Sitric around 1030. The city’s history is obviously linked with Christ Church as the medieval Irish Parliament met within the church and it is also the place where King Edward VI of England was crowned.

Kilmainham Gaol (Inchicore Road Dublin 8)
The Kilmainham Gaol is one of the largest unoccupied gaols in Europe.  Many famous people in Ireland’s history were held in this jail – including the leaders of the 1916 Easter rising who were executed here. It houses an exhibition illustrating the political history of the prison and its restoration.
A word of warning though – the building is cold so in Winter be sure to wear warm clothes. Also it’s probably better if you have an interest in and/or basic understanding of Irish history


There are three National Museums open free to visitors.

National Museum of Archaeology and History Kildare Street, Dublin 2
The National Museum of Archaeology and History displays all archaeological objects found in Ireland. It houses over 2,000,000 artefacts ranging from 7000 BC and the late medieval period. Visitors may admire a fine collection of prehistoric gold artefacts, metalwork from the Celtic Iron Age and a range of medieval ecclesiastical objects and jewellery.

The National Museum of Decorative Arts and History has a wide range of weaponry, furniture, silver, ceramics, glassware as well as samples of folklife and costume. One of the rarest pieces in the museum is a Chinese porcelain vase made around 1300 AD.

The National Museum of Natural History or as Dublin people might say: the “Dead Zoo”, displays Irish and world zoology. Ireland’s wildlife may be seen in the Irish Room, the wildlife of Asia, Africa and the rest of the world is exhibited on the first floor. Many of the species are endangered or rare.

Dublin City Hall Dame Street, Dublin 2
In Dublin’s City Hall visitors may discover the capital’s history. A multi-media exhibition captures a thousand years of Dublin. Audio-guides are available in English, French, Spanish, German, Italian or Irish.
Opening Hours:

Dublin Civic Museum 58 South William Street, Dublin 2
The Dublin Civic Museum collects and preserves material related to the city. It also displays historical items providing an understanding of Dublin and its past. There are regular exhibitions regarding all aspects of Dublin life.
Admission is free

GAA Museum Croke Park, St. Joseph’s Avenue, Dublin 3
The GAA Museum was founded in 1884 and officially opened in 1998. Croke Park is home to Ireland’s national games of hurling and football. The museum has been established to give a unique insight into the games of hurling and football.

Irish Jewish Museum Walworth Road, Off Victoria Street, Portobello. South Circular Road, Dublin 8
The Irish Jewish Museum is a former Synagogue. It displays paintings, photographs, books, certificates and artefacts related to the Jewish life.
Admission is free

The National Maritim Museum Haigh Terrace, Dun Laoghaire Co. Dublin
The National Maritime Museum is located in the former Mariners Church in Dun Laoghaire. It combines a number of historical models and tells the story of Robert Halpin, who captained the ship laying the first transatlantic telegraph cable in 1866. Another interesting exhibit is a French longboat that has been captured at Bantry in 1796.
Admission is free

Irish Museum of Modern Art Royal Hospital Military Road, Kilmainham. Dublin 8
Considered as Ireland’s leading institution for the presentation and collection of contemporary & modern art, the Irish Museum of Modern Art presents a variety of art exhibitions.
Admission is free

National Gallery of Ireland Merrion Square West, Dublin 2
The National Gallery of Ireland displays the national collection of Irish art and European master paintings. The museum is located on the west side of Merrion Square, which is also a great place to admire Georgian architecture.
Opening Hours:
Admission is free

Dublin City Gallery The Hugh Lane Charlemont House Parnell Square North, Dublin 1houses a collection of contemporary and modern art. It includes almost 2000 pieces of artwork by leading national and international artists. The gallery also offers activities such as workshops, adult education courses as well as Sunday lecture series.
Admission to permanent exhibition is free

Now I think that is more than enough to keep you going for now.

Next week – Literature and the makers of. 😉