I have found an ingenious way to travel to where I want to go, several years ago I started finding swim races in places I want to visit and then encourage my husband to sign up-London, Annecy, Cork, San Francisco, Welland, Ontario and now Dublin.
The 1st Liffey Swim was held in 1920 so this was it's 91st year, it's the end event of the swimming season and Irish participants need to be part of a swimming club and complete at least 4 open water events to qualify. My understanding is that they average the time for those events and then give you a handicap which means that everyone is on a more or less even playing field and it's not necessarily the fastest swimmer that wins. The race is 2.2km and starts at the Watling Street Bridge near the Guinness Brewery, under the Ha'Penny Bridge, the O'Connell Street Bridge and ending at the Customs House where participants can take a shower to get the river goo off of them.
David, being an overseas competitor, was not subject to the same requirement but they also didn't know where to seed him so they handicapped him with the 2nd to last bunch which were their best swimmers so he didn't really have a chance at any of the awards. Unlike Cork, there were no wetsuits allowed for the race, some of the swimmers did have those full body swimsuits that go down to the ankles and cover the chest but most of them were just wearing the traditional Speedo, let everything hang out, weenie suits!
They had a nice awards ceremony at the Shelbourne Hotel later that evening, David got a lovely silver platter as the top overseas male to add to his collection and everyone made such a fuss over him that he was elated.
Equipment: All you need is your swimsuit, swim goggles and some Irish courage
Address: Watling Street Bridge
National Aquatic centre has recently opened in Blanchardstown in North-West Dublin. It's supposed to be one of the biggest indoor waterparks in Europe and a 50-m pool.
Equipment: Swimsuit would be a good idea ;)
Address: Blanchardstown, Dublin 15
Directions: Get the 38 bus from city centre