Fun things to do in Ireland

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Most Viewed Things to Do in Ireland

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    Walking tour or Bike Tour

    by Paulm1987 Updated Dec 9, 2013

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    These two tours gave me some good knowledge and clue about the city.Not only History but clear picture of Dublin.So it's a must do when you're a first time traveller to Dublin to familiarize yourself with the Historic Dublin City.

    Bike Tour Walking Tour - Trinity college
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    HOWTH

    by swissfondue Written Nov 22, 2013

    Just a hop, skip and a jump away from Dublin (a short train trip on the DART) is the large coastal village of Howth. Even though it is a popular area to live in due to the short commute into the city, Howth retains its historical fishing village charm and demonstrates how accessible the country lifestyle can be.

    Worth a trip!

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    Ancient crossroads of the nation

    by sourbugger Written Oct 28, 2013

    The Hill of Tara, is an exceptional ancient site to visit set in county Meath. Nowadays there is little left but grassy mounds and swirls that mark a variety of ancient burial mounds, temples and the like. It is said to be the point at which the major ancient roads of Ireland met and the 'High Kings' of Ireland were crowned.
    This coronation was completed at the 'stone of destiny' pictures. Legend says it that the stone would 'scream, when an appropriate would-be king touched it. Unbelievably, this monument is completely open to the public - I even stood on top of it. As an Englishman the stone probably shuddered in disgust rather than screamed.

    About 25 structures can be determined, mostly forts with another 50 still yet to be fully discovered.

    On a more modern note, the site also has a rather tatty hawthorn tree that has become to be seen as a 'fairy tree'. People tie ribbons and all kinds of odd things onto it to make a wish. Several children's dummies were tied to just one branch I checked out, and rather oddly a rather nice black bra. I wonder what the weaer (or rather ex-wearer) was wishing for ? Small ones, larger ones or perhaps it was a man longing for something or other...the mind boggles.

    The walk up from the car park (free) is barely noticeable, past an interpretive centre (admission cost) situated in the old church.

    The site itself is open all year, free, and affords views of many miles across the Irish Countryside.

    stone of destiny

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    Lake Muckross Boat Taxi

    by edwis Updated Sep 26, 2013

    One day we hiked about 1.5 hours ending up at the lower end of Loch Muckross at a historic cabin that is now a coffee shop. We decide to take John Murphy’s shuttle boat back across the lake to our starting point. John lived in Boston for 5 years and gave us a special tour all around the lake, in some back waterways under arched bridges and around two islands, as part of our regular fare. He told us the story of nasty Queen Victoria who came to Muckross to show goodwill towards the Irish people. They were all excited and built her a special boat, boat house, designed a first floor bedroom with special fire escape, taking several years to prepare for her visit. She arrived, spent two days at Muckross House with her nobles and 100 of her most essential servants, then expressed her dislike of the climate and area, and left. The owners of Muckross House ended up in bankruptcy due to the expenses incurred in the preparations, thus furthering already poor Irish-English relations. This must be a good tourist story; we heard it twice in three days while in Killarney

    carrying 2 pass, and 2 bikes the main boat house at Muckross House dock at Denis Cottage, lower end of lake
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    Powerscourt Gardens at County Wicklow

    by hopang Updated Sep 20, 2013

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    Powerscourt Gardens at County Wicklow is a great tourist attraction. It is in our opinion one of the most beautiful gardens in Europe. It is definitely the highlight of our *****Grand Wicklow and Coastal Tour to Wicklow Mountains National Park. Powerscourt Estate is located just 20 minutes by car or bus from central Dublin.

    The Powerscourt House, a Palladian mansion has history that dates back to the 13th century when it was built as a castle. The mansion was undergoing extensive rebuilding and renovations under the famous German architect Richard Cassels between the years 1730 and 1740. Today the Powerscourt House and Gardens are owned by Slazenger family. We are glad that the family open the house and gardens to the public.

    Several gardens at Powerscourt Gardens worth visiting are the Italian Gardens, the Japanese Gardens (which is our favourite as depicted on our fourth photograph) and the Walled Gardens. Triton Lake (depicted on our main photograph) has a great view of the Powerscourt House from below. A name of a pet's cemetery that attracted us was Chou Sun Yat Sen (our second photograph) who died on 1st February, 1923. For record purposes, Dr. Sun Yat Sen died in 1925.

    The opening hours of Powerscourt Gardens are between 9.30 a.m. and 5.30 p.m. daily. Admission fee to the Powerscourt Gardens is €8.50 per adult. Entrance to the Powerscourt House is free. There are shops, restaurants and café at the Powerscourt House. Some lovely sculptures can be viewed on the ground floor of the Powerscourt House.

    Triton Lake at Powerscourt Gardens One of our favourite names at Pet's Cemetery One of many lovely ponds at Powerscourt Gardens The amazing Japanese Gardens Lovely fountains and sculptures at Italian Gardens
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    Monastic site of Glendalough

    by hopang Updated Sep 19, 2013

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    Monastic site of Glendalough is a "must-visit" tourist attraction whenever you visit Wicklow Mountains National Park. Allow yourself at least one hour at the site as there are lots of interesting ruins to visit and explore. Monastic site of Glendalough is one of the most famous monastic sites in the Republic of Ireland. It is definitely the crown jewel of Wicklow Mountains National Park. Entrance to this monastic site is free. We were certainly not disappointed after visiting the site.

    Monastic site of Glendalough was founded by St. Kevin, a hermit monk in the 6th century. Most of the ruins of this medieval monastery date back to 10th to 12th centuries. Normans destroyed the monastery in the early 13th century and British destroyed the settlement further in the late 14th century. Monastic ruins in the site include several churches, a round tower, High Crosses, a graveyard, the Priest's House, St. Kevin's Bed and St. Kevin's Cell.

    Our main photograph depicts the Round Tower which is a typical Irish medieval building. It is approximately 30 meters high. The entrance is at least three meters high from the ground. The round tower was originally used as a bell tower. Our second and fourth photographs depict the ruins of the Cathedral of St. Peter and St. Paul. It was the largest building in the monastic settlement. The Cathedral dates back to the 11th century.

    Our third photograph depicts St. Kevin's Kitchen which is actually St. Kevin's Church. It has history that dates back to the 12th century. St. Kevin's Church is the most well maintained among all the churches in the site. Our last photograph depicts the graveyard and several High Crosses. Don't miss this amazing monastic site of Glendalough when you visit Glendalough in particular and Wicklow Mountains National Park in general on your vacation.

    Medieval Round Tower Monastic sites of Glendalough St. Kevin's Kitchen Ruins of Cathedral of St. Peter & St. Paul High Crosses and graveyard
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    Glendalough, Wicklow Mountains National Park

    by hopang Updated Sep 18, 2013

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    Glendalough is a glacial valley in County Wicklow and is an ancient monastic city dating back to the Middle Ages. It was discovered by St. Kevin, a hermit priest. Glendalough literally means "the valleys of two lakes", i.e. the Upper Lake and the Lower Lake. When we were at Glendalough we visited only the Upper Lake where almost all visitors to Glendalough come to visit. We were told that the Lower Lake is not really well maintained, so most visitors will bypass the Lower Lake.

    Both lakes of Glendalough are located within the area of Wicklow Mountains National Park which has a total area of approximately 200 square kilometers, reaching as far as the southern end of Dublin city. Wicklow Mountains National Park is only one of the six national parks in the Republic of Ireland. The national park was established only in 1991. There are several walking trails around both lakes of Glendalough. All begin at the information office near the Upper Lake. Visitors can also purchase maps of the walking trails from the information office.

    The Upper Lake is incredibly beautiful it has to be said. You can stay there for hours and really admire and enjoy its beauty. Sadly we did not have time for that. The weather was also not so kind to us. Nevertheless we still enjoyed the quiet environment of the beautiful Upper Lake that day.

    The beautiful Upper Lake of Glendalough The scenic Upper Lake of Glendalough The incredible Upper Lake of Glendalough
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    Bray, seaside resort south of Dublin

    by hopang Updated Sep 18, 2013

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    Bray is located just 20 kilometers south of Dublin. Bray was once a very popular seaside resort. In fact it was one of the top seaside resorts in the Republic of Ireland. Today it is more of a commuter town. Many commuters work in the city of Dublin and live in the town of Bray, probably it is cheaper to live here than in the crowded city of Dublin. They commute to the city of Dublin daily by cars or DART railway system. Bray has a population of approximately 35,000 inhabitants.

    Bray is located in County Wicklow. The once popular seaside resort has a one and half kilometer long promenade from north of the town right up to Bray Head. Bray Head itself is a lovely ridge as depicted on our second photograph. It has a height of approximately 240 meters. The view from the top of Bray Head overlooking the sea and the town must be amazing. Unfortunately we did not go up the hill due to shortage of time. Bray was once a great fishing village and harbour many centuries ago since the Norman era until probably the 17th century. Today It has a film industry and it is home to Ireland's only film studio known as Ardmore Studios.

    Our tour guide Joe told us that you can purchase one day DART railway ticket from the city of Dublin for just €5.00 and travel on your own by DART railway to Bray. You have plenty of time to chill out at Bray. Many great pubs and restaurants are located along the coastline. There are also lots of entertainments in and around the town of Bray. We wish you had more time in Ireland so that we could take a day trip to this lovely town of Bray. Hope to make it next time if we ever come back to Dublin.

    Seaside resort of Bray Bray Head in the background Seaside resort of Bray The sandy beaches of Bray Information at seaside resort of Bray
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    Dublin City Hall

    by hopang Updated Sep 16, 2013

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    Dublin City Hall is another Georgian building that we really admired its architecture in Dublin. This building was also designed by Thomas Cooley and has a rich history. It was constructed in 1779 originally housed the Royal Exchange. It was turned into the offices of local government in the middle of the 19th century. City Hall building is opened to the public. Admission to Rotunda underneath the dome is free for visitors. However entrance fee is charged for those who want to visit the multi-media exhibition hall. Nevertheless admission to the exhibition is free for those with valid Dublin Pass. Opening hours to Dublin City Hall are between 10.00 a.m. and 5.00 p.m. from Monday to Saturday. It is closed on Sunday. You may e-mail to the following address for more information:- cityhall@dublincity.ie

    Dublin City Hall building Dublin City Hall building Dublin City Hall building

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    The Four Courts in Dublin

    by hopang Updated Sep 16, 2013

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    The Four Courts is another impressive landmark located within the city limit in Dublin. It was designed by Irish architects James Gandon and Thomas Cooley. This neo-classical style building was constructed in the late 18th century. It originally housed the Court of Chancery, King's Bench, the Court of the Exchequer and the Court of Common Pleas. However these four courts were later merged to form High Court in the late 19th century.

    Major parts of the Four Courts building were severely damaged by IRA during the Irish War of Independence in 1922 and the rebuilding process was fully completed only in 1932.

    Today the Four Courts is home to the Supreme Court, the High Court, the Circuit Court and the Central Criminal Court. As this is a court house, the building is opened to the public. Nevertheless photography and video recording are not allowed inside the building. Unfortunately parts of the dome of the Four Courts are under renovation at the moment. So it is not possible to take a nice photograph of the building especially the dome.

    The Four Courts in Dublin The Four Courts in Dublin The Four Courts in Dublin
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    Custom House in Dublin

    by hopang Updated Sep 16, 2013

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    Custom House is one of the most impressive landmarks in the city of Dublin. The neo-classical style Georgian building was constructed in the late 18th century as main office of Commissioners of Custom & Excise. It was designed by the famous Irish architect James Gandon. It took 10 years to build. Ornamental sculptures on the top of the building were designed by Edward Smyth representing the rivers in Ireland. The statue standing on the dome was designed by Henry Banks.

    Much of the interior of the building was severely damaged during the Irish War of Independence in 1921 when IRA set fire on the building. As a result the whole dome collapsed. The present dome was rebuilt in 1928.

    Today it is home to various government departments. Major parts of the buildings are not opened to the public and only the Visitor Centre in the Custom House is opened to the public. Visitors are able to view exhibitions on the history of the Custom House at the Visitor Centre. Admission to the Visitor Centre is free of charge. Opening hours to the Visitor Centre are between 10.00 a.m. and 5.00 p.m. from Monday to Friday and between 2.00 p.m. and 5.00 p.m. during the weekends.

    Custom House in Dublin Custom House in Dublin Custom House in Dublin Custom House in Dublin Custom House in Dublin
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    Samuel Beckett Bridge in Dublin

    by hopang Updated Sep 15, 2013

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    Samuel Beckett Bridge is a harp-shaped cable stayed bridge supported by 30 cable stays. It has a modern sophisticated design and looks like a harp lying on its side. It was designed by Spanish architect Santiago Calatrava Valls who also designed James Joyce Bridge further upstream. The bridge can be opened in the middle to allow large boats to pass through the river. This steel bridge was opened to vehicular traffic only in 2009 by Lord Mayor of Dublin. It was named after the famous Irish writer Samuel Beckett. The bridge is approximately 120 meters long and its height is approximately 50 meters high. The superstructure was actually constructed in Rotterdam and ferried to River Liffey in Dublin by ship.

    Samuel Beckett Bridge has four vehicular traffic lanes and two lanes for cyclists and pedestrians. Several landmarks or attractions are located within a stone's throw from the bridge such as the city's Conference Centre (as depicted in the background of our third photograph) and the Jeanie Johnston Tall Ship Museum (third photograph foreground). This modern bridge has slowly become a popular tourist attraction and a landmark of the city. We were certainly attracted by this unique harp-shaped design which is a symbol of the Republic of Ireland.

    Samuel Beckett Bridge in Dublin Samuel Beckett Bridge in Dublin Jeanie Johnston Tall Ship Museum (foreground) Samuel Beckett Bridge in Dublin Samuel Beckett Bridge across River Liffey
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    St. Andrew's Church in Dublin

    by hopang Updated Sep 15, 2013

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    St. Andrew's Church is a former parish Church of Ireland. Today it is home to Dublin Discover Ireland Centre, the main tourist information office of the city of Dublin. It has history that dates back to the middle of the 17th century. St. Andrew's Church was designed by William Dodson. The present church structure was rebuilt in the late 18th century when the former church building was severely damaged by fire. The grand main entrance of the church is original. All the stained-glass window flames are still intact although the original stained-glasses are no longer there.

    As tourist information office, you may visit and obtain free maps of the city of Dublin from here, enquire about things to do in the city of Dublin as well as ask for information about nice places to eat and drink in the city. There is a model of Canadian Pacific locomotive (depicted on our last photograph) on display on the right side of the grand entrance. Don't miss this interesting model when you visit the former St. Andrew's Church. Opening hours to Dublin Discover Ireland Centre are between 9.00 a.m. and 5.30 p.m. from Monday to Saturday and between 10.30 a.m. and 3.00 p.m. on Sunday. Free WiFi is available to visitors.

    The former St. Andrew's Church in Dublin Main entrance to St. Andrew's Church in Dublin Dublin Discover Ireland Centre in Dublin Dublin Discover Ireland Centre in Dublin A model of Canadian Pacific train at St Andrew's
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    St. Stephen's Green in Dublin

    by hopang Updated Sep 15, 2013

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    St. Stephen's Green is a quiet and beautiful public park located right in the heart of the city of Dublin, in fact right next to the busy shopping district of Grafton Street. The total area of the park is approximately 22 acres. There are not many cities in Europe with such a large park located right in the city center. It is certainly peaceful and tranquil as visitors can be seen enjoying their time there . Many locals and tourists alike simply relax, lying on the grass, feeding the ducks, people watching, having picnics, to chill out just to escape the chaos of the city's traffic.

    The rectangular-shaped St. Stephen's Green is one of the largest parks in the city, the largest is of course Phoenix Park. The Victorian layout of St. Stephen's Green as we see today, was designed by William Sheppard in the late 19th century although the park has history that dates back to the middle of the 17th century. The park has a large beautiful lake as depicted on our first two photographs.

    Fusilier's Gate (as depicted on our fourth photograph) was erected in the beginning of the 20th century on the northwest end of St. Stephen's Green just south of pedestrianised Grafton Street next to St. Stephen's Green Shopping Centre (the shopping centre is depicted on our last photograph). Fusilier's Gate is approximately 10 meters high and was designed by John Howard Pentland. The granite gate was erected to dedicate to Royal Dublin Fusiliers who died in Boer War for Dublin.

    Opening hours to St. Stephen's Green are between 8.00 a.m. and 6.00 p.m. daily during the summer months. Admission to the park is free of charge. This is a very well maintained park. Make it a point to visit St. Stephen's Green when you are around Grafton Street on your vacation in Dublin.

    St. Stephen's Green in Dublin St. Stephen's Green in Dublin St. Stephen's Green in Dublin Fusilier's Gate at St. Stephen's Green St. Stephen's Green Shopping Centre next to park
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    Trinity College in Dublin

    by hopang Updated Sep 14, 2013

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    Trinity College is the oldest university in Ireland and is one of the top universities in the United Kingdom and Ireland. It is also one of the few universities in the world located right in the heart of its capital city. Trinity College was founded in the late 16th century. Most of the structural buildings in the campus, mainly Georgian style of architecture, were designed by Theodore Jacobsen.

    The campus of Trinity College is opened to the public. The cobbled Parliamnet Square just inside the entrance is a pleasant place to wander around simply admiring the many surrounding structural buildings and the monuments. Situated in front of the Companile is the statue of George Salmon, the former provost of the university (as depicted on our last photograph). The famous Book of Kells can be visited in the Long Room of the Old Library of Trinity College. Nevertheless the queues to visit the Old Library especially the Book of Kells can be very long.

    Trinity College in Dublin Trinity College in Dublin Trinity College in Dublin The Companile in front of Parliament Square Statue of George Salmon, the former provost
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