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Showing posts with the label Ireland

Dublin Docklands Walk

The current Customs House is a reconstruction of the original structure designed by James Gandon in 1781 and opened in 1791. It was burned down in 1921 by the Irish Republican Army during the Irish War of Independence. The Customs House was originally built for the purpose of collecting customs duties from ships plying the Liffey River which is across the street. It became the headquarters of local government when the port was moved downriver and is currently the home of the Department of the Environment, Community and Local Government.

The Coastal Village of Howth

A homeless Jesus sleeps on a bench at Christ Church Cathedral

Christ Church Cathedral or the Cathedral of the Holy Trinity is the oldest cathedral in Dublin. Founded around 1030 by the Hiberno-Norse, it has welcomed worshippers for nearly a millennium. It it is the mother church of the Church of Ireland United Dioceses of Dublin and Glendalough. The roof, the south nave and west walls collapsed in 1562. It was extensively rebuilt in the 1870s with Victorian Gothic features. 

Why Dublin is a fun city to explore

We arrived in Dublin in late April to overcast skies which quickly developed into rain.  But we decided to explore anyway. The rain didn't last long and by the time we got to Fleet Street from O'Connell Street, we were walking in chilly sunshine. All that rain keeps Ireland green so it can live up to its poetic nickname, The Emerald Isle.

Sur la Table: Pub Grub and Asian Fusion Cuisine

Sea bass on a bed of vegetables with curry sauce and steamed rice
One late Sunday evening in Ennis, a small town about 30 minutes from Shannon Airport, I was looking for a place to eat and happened to read the menu on the window of a "take away" place. I was famished after an exploratory walk all over town and on my way back to the hotel. After much indecision, I settled for the prawns with sweet and sour sauce and steamed rice. All for 10 euros. While waiting I noticed a steady stream of people coming in to order their dinner. When my order was ready, I received it in a plastic box. No worries about spilling.

I counted at least four Asian restaurants in the center of Ennis which I thought was surprising in such a small community. But further explorations in other cities revealed the proliferation of Asian fusion restaurants. This says a lot about the culinary preferences of the locals. Here are some restaurants and a pub where I had a pleasurable dining experience.

Tamarin…

Adare, Ireland's Prettiest Village

Thatched-roof cottages
Twenty minutes south of Limerick City on the River Maigue is Ireland's prettiest village, Adare. It's a small town, pleasantly quiet even in mid July, at the height of the tourist season. There was a celebrity classic golf tournament going on at the exclusive Adare Manor Golf Course during my visit. But thankfully, this did not bring in the crowds.

Augustinian Priory
It's an easy stroll from the Augustinian Priory to Bill Chawke's Lounge Bar on the opposite end of town.  Centuries old thatched roof cottages, medieval monasteries, vine covered townhouses, the Adare Town Park and the quintessential Irish pubs line Main Street. There's no need to rush. All these places invite visitors to linger and savor the moment.

At Bill Chawke's the kegs are full and ready to be served. But before saying your first "sláinte!" (to your health), consider walking the extra mile or so to the ruins of Desmond Castle, north of Adare Manor. It dates bac…

New UNESCO World Heritage Sites for Ireland

Poulnabrone dolmen in The Burren
Gadling reports that Ireland has recently proposed seven sites to be included in the Tentative List for UNESCO World Heritage nomination. Among these are The Burren and Western Stone Forts which I just visited last week (an article appears below). The other five sites are the Historic Center of Dublin, the Céide Fields and North West Mayo Boglands, The Monastic City of Clonmacnoise and its Cultural Landscape, Early Medieval Monastic Sites, and the Royal Sites of Ireland including Cashel and Tara Complex.

I'm happy to read this report as Ireland is one beautiful country with supernatural scenery and rich history.  The inclusion of its seven sites in the Tentative List would be well deserved.

For more on this story follow this link: http://tinyurl.com/348cacb

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Image by Charie