Herbert park hotel
€275 double room Located in the south of Dublin city centre the Embassy District of Ballsbridge, encloses an Eden of green trees and parklands; this is the setting of Dublin's finest contemporary Irish design hotel, Herbert Park Hotel.
Herbert Park is located in Ballsbridge, Dublin 4 and is as much family oriented as St. Stephens Green but is never as overcrowded.
The park is thirty-two acres in size and is in two halves, divided by a road, also called Herbert Park. A full circuit of the park's perimeter is almost exactly one mile and this fact used by runners and walkers to measure their progress.
The larger half, on the south side of the road, has a number of soccer pitches, formal gardens, and a large duck pond.
The northern half is home to a public children's playground which has been rebuilt in 2006 and is now one of the nicest in the area. There is also a tennis court, Herbert Park Bowling Club.
If you decide to visit Herbert park with your family you can have lunch at herbert Park hotel, or just grab something in one of the many restaurants in Ballsbridge.
If you are not interested in restaurants or on a budget, have a picnic on the grass, as most Dubs do!
Dublin & north
My second trip to Ireland was a bit earlier in the year, rather than May, I went for about 10 days in late February into March of 1999. In addition to visiting my husband, who was working there for about 6 months, I also took advantage of the opportunity to call in an old travel debt. I contacted someone I had met briefly and rescued luggage for on the way out of Turkey, in 1997. As a result, I spent a couple of days visiting and exchanging news with some folk from the Irish Forest Service Inspectorate and Coillte Teoranta (Irish Forestry Board). It was both interesting and educational! We also took a little trip to see a bit more of the Emerald Isle. This time we headed north to Northern Ireland (UK) to see the Giant’s Causeway and other natural and pre-historic wonders. It was, again, very interesting, if a trifle chilly.
Flew from (snowy) Ottawa to (green) Heathrow and on to (greener) Dublin. Got into Dublin mid-morning. Was picked up and taken back to flat at Herbert Park - home in Dublin. I looked around the abode, had a bit of a nap, and had some coffee. I needed to be ready to head to the pub later on - de rigeur for a Friday, whether in Ottawa or Dublin. Later got picked up and taken to meet the gang at the pub.
Today, with a colleague of my husband and his girlfriend, my husband (Gardner) and I drove out to County Tipperary to see the Rock of Cashel and Hore Abbey. The Rock of Cashel (a 60-metre hill) was the seat of the Munster kings from AD 370 to 1101. Legend states that the Devil took a bite from the Slieve Mountains (leaving a gap known as the Devil’s Bit - which I have not seen) and spat forth this limestone outcrop when surprised by St. Patrick. The Rock is crowned by a number of impressive medieval buildings, the oldest being the 27-metre Round Tower, which dates from the 10th century. Cormac’s Chapel, begun in 1127, is a fine example of Irish Romanesque architecture. The roofless 13th century cathedral is the largest building on the summit. Hore Abbey is in the valley near the Rock of Cashel. It was raining very hard for part of the time we were here.
Today, we returned to an old favourite (from 1993) as well as discovered new ground. We headed north from Dublin to Drogheda in County Louth to see Newgrange again - a 5,000 year old megalithic tomb. We didn’t actually go in this time, however. We headed off to find the Hill of Slane. This, apparently, was where St. Patrick lit a bonfire for Christianity in 433 AD. We also visited the remains of Mellifont Abbey - a 12th century ruin of the first Cistercian house established in Ireland. We saw the remains of a Romanesque cloister, a two-story octagonal lavabo (or washing place) and a 13th century chapter house. We also found Monasterboice - a celebrated monastic site that includes 3 high crosses, a 98-foot tall round tower, two churches, a tombstone and a sundial. On the way back to Dublin, we dropped by Bettystown, a location on the sea where there is a lovely beach where people go to park their cars and look at the sea, and who knows what else.
Out to the Lansdown Road DART (Dublin Area Rapid Transit) station by about 10:30 and headed to Tara Station. Poked around North of the Liffey - got stamps. Had lunch at Kylemore Café. Then went over the Ha’Penny Bridge to South side of Liffey to Trinity College Book Store. Walked Grafton Street to St. Stephen’s Green. Then went back to Tara station and was back at the flat by 17:00. The weather was good all day. We went out to Bellamy’s (pub) after dinner.
Out to the Lansdown Road Dart station by about 10:00 and took the DART to Blackrock. Met my husband for lunch at Bar 22 in Blackrock. I then continued on the DART all the way to Bray - the end of the line for the DART. It was quite a nice trip. In Bray, I looked around a little bit, saw a bunch of swans and found a fabric store. After my walk I went for a tea break and a bit of a rest. At 16:00, I returned to Lansdown after a fine day out. Once back to the flat, I took my book and went to Ballamy’s for a drink and a bit of a read, then returned to the flat at 18:00 or so for dinner.
My Forestry Inspectorate contact came to pick me up at the Herbert Park Hotel - in the same "compound" as the flats where we were staying. We went out to Wicklow and the Coillte Teoranta office for a few presentations. We then went to Avondale House in Rathdrum for lunch. Built in 1779 by Samual Hayes, a barrister who represented Wicklow in the Irish House of Commons, Avondale House is set in an estate of 500 acres of forest and parkland along the west bank of the Avonmore River. Avondale House passed to the Parnell family in 1795, and it was at Avondale in June 1846 that one of the greatest political leaders of modern Irish history, Charles Stewart Parnell, was born. Avondale is also synonymous with the birth of Irish forestry. The state purchased Avondale in 1904 and laid out the first silvicultural experimental plots.
After lunch, on the return to Dublin, we travelled through some plantations. We were back in Dublin by 17:45.
This morning I met my Forestry Inspectorate contact at Leeson Lane at 10:30. While at the Forestry Inspectorate offices, I spent a few moments with someone else to observe an electronic auction of timber. Before meeting with my contact again at 12:00, I dropped by the Canadian Embassy, which is just nearby. I managed to see somebody just to share information on my discussions with the local people. I just wanted to let them know that I had been meeting with somebody from the country about forestry stuff. It’s all about sharing information. Back with the Forestry Inspectorate, we went off to meet with someone from COFORD (Ireland’s National Council for Forest Research and Development) for lunch. We spent a little more time after lunch with some of the COFORD scientists. It was another quite interesting day and I was back in the flat by 17:00.
Today was the first day of our own little field trip. Gardner and I were out of the flat by 10:00. We left Dublin and headed to Armagh (in Northern Ireland) for lunch. We kept going north after lunch and got to Portrush to find a B&B for the night. Then we headed to the Giant’s Causeway. It was quite cool and very windy. The Giant’s Causeway is quite amazing and definitely worth a look, though perhaps not in high winds, as the trails are on quite a high outcrop to the ocean and are sometimes closed. In fact, we discovered once we’d come up to the interpretive centre the back way round, that the trail we’d just come in on was actually closed. It was very windy.
Got out of B&B by 10:00 and headed out to look around the Causeway coast. We saw ruins of several castles - Dunluce and Dunseverick, to name a couple. We also had a look at some islands offshore and could even see the coast of Scotland at one point! We had lunch at Bushmills - unfortunately, the distillery was closed. We later headed on to Malin to find a hotel for the night. We went out to Malin Head to look around and were back to the hotel by 19:00. Then we had to find somewhere to eat, which we eventually did.
Got out of Hotel by 10:00 and headed on to look around the Inishowen Peninsula. It’s quite scenic. We had lunch just north of Donegal. We also had a look for and found Grianán Ailagh - an ancient hilltop fort that has been a cultural centre for at least 4000 years. Whoever lived there would have had a lovely view. We headed on to a B&B in Sligo by 18:00 and went for dinner in the town at about 19:00.
We headed out of the B&B in Sligo and on to Boyle, Clonmacnoise, Kilbeggan and back to Dublin. Clonmacnoise - the ruins of an ancient ecclesiastical site on the Shannon River was the most impressive of these. Once back in Dublin, we found an Indian restaurant for dinner. Very nice.
This morning I had to head home to Canada. 08:50 from Dublin to Heathrow; 13:45 Heathrow to Ottawa; 16:15 arrive in Ottawa.
And the next day I was back in the office, after another lovely holiday.