I have always enjoyed traveling, even if it meant sleeping in a tent when I was younger. I prefer hotels and cruise cabins now, but the motivation is the same...an adventure waiting to happen. Sometimes you will find me traveling with my husband and/or family. Sometimes I will travel alone, and sometimes I will travel with friends. I hope you find it entertaining to keep up to date with me as I explore the world around me. Warning...I like to take pictures of food so don't read if you're hungry. More adventures await...see ya soon...Amy.

Monday, September 17, 2012

Dublin, Ireland

South William Street with Powerscourt Centre on the right.

Pygmalion in Powerscourt Centre is where we ate lunch

This is Knit is the knitting store in Powerscourt Centre. We were looking for Irish Wool to knit with only to find out that Irish Wool is so rough and scratchy, that Irish Knitters don't knit with it. There are only a couple of companies that produce a fairly soft Irish Wool worth knitting.

This controversial statue on Grafton Street is of Molly Malone, a fishmonger/prostitute that is most likely a legend instead of a real person. Regardless, Dad affectionately referred to her as great aunt Molly.

The Hop On/Hop Off bus we rode for the afternoon all over the city

loved the "fishscale" top on the theater

Christ Church Cathedral, the oldest medieval cathedral in Dublin. It is officially claimed as the seat of both the Church of Ireland and Roman Catholic archbishops of Dublin. In practice, it has been the cathedral of only the Church of Ireland's Archbishop of Dublin since the English Reformation.

St. Patrick's Cathedral, the second oldest medieval cathedral in Dublin. It is a cathedral of the Church of Ireland founded in 1191. The Church has designated it as The National Cathedral of Ireland. It is also the largest church in Ireland.

In Scotland, Gaelic is printed on top of a sign with English underneath. In Ireland, Irish Gaelic is on top with the English underneath.

St. Audoen's Church is the oldest Church of Ireland parish church in Dublin

St. Augustine and St. John Catholic Church at the end of Thomas Street. It's more commonly known as John's Lane Church because it's at the corner of John's Lane.

This is the former Guinness brewery building that now houses a large exhibition containing all manner of information and items that touch on Guinness

The Royal Hospital Kilmainham is one of the finest 17th-century buildings in Ireland. The hospital was built as a home for retired soldiers and continued in that use for over 250 years. It was restored in 1984 and now serves as the home of the Irish Museum of Modern Art (IMMA)

an example of the Georgian architecture that marks the city

The River Liffey runs through Dublin

Phoenix Park is 1752 acres. It is an historic landscape of international importance and one of the largest designed landscapes in any European city.  It was originally established in 1662 as a Royal deer park and there is still a herd of deer within the park.

Located within the park is the Official Residence of the President of Ireland. In the window sill of the President's residence there is always a candle burning. This tradition stems from the time of the Famine when many Irishmen left for the USA. The families left behind would light a candle as a sign they would be waiting for their loved ones to return. Today the candle is burning for the Irish to know that, wherever in the world they may be, there will always be someone waiting for them, and they will always be welcomed back.

Wellington Monument is the largest Obelisk in Europe and is also in Phoenix Park. It was built to commemorate the victories of Arthur Wellesley, the first Duke of Wellington who was born in Dublin.

The Dublin Rory O'More Bridge was opened in 1860 as the Victoria Bridge. It was renamed in 1922 after a leader of the uprising of 1641

The Dublin O'Donovan Rossa Bridge. The bridge was built in 1813 and was originally named Richmond Bridge, after one of the Lord Lieutenants of Ireland.

The Grattan Bridge was built in 1874

The mural on this building caught our eye when we passed by it on the way to our hotel

The Ha'penny Bridge was built in 1816 and was the only pedestrian bridge over The Liffey until the Millennium Bridge opened in 2000.  It was originally named the Liffey Bridge but is now called the Ha'penny because until 1919 to cross it there was a half-penny charge.

We thought this was a unique name for a coffee shop

one of the streets we wandered looking for a place to eat

free giveaway of CHOCOLATE! These girls moved around and we managed to get two of these to eat.

me and my free chocolate!

Murphy's real Irish Ice Cream!

choices, choices, choices....of course I had to go with MORE chocolate!

Mom and me with our ice cream.

Long time lovers of ice cream
We said goodbye to Scotland pretty early this morning and caught an Aer Lingus flight to Dublin. We had to walk out to the plane in the rain, but thankfully, everyone was getting on quickly and we didn't have to stand on the ladder very long. The flight was uneventful for the most part and everyone but me used that time to take a little nap. The sun was shining when we got to Ireland! We have a lot to see while we are in Ireland and I have been fearful for months about Danny driving here because they drive on the opposite side of the road, just like in U.K. He has assured me he could handle it, but still I had butterflies.We rented a car at the airport and everything we read on the internet said to practice driving around the rental car lot before going out into traffic. Well this rental car lot has arrows pointing in only one way and that is OUT of the parking lot and INTO traffic. Danny was thrown immediately into driving on the left hand side of the road and remembering manual transmission with a stickshift that is also on the left hand side. Thankfully, the brake and accelerator are in the usual places. I have to say that he really did great. We were only honked at once by someone who would have liked for us to go faster, but oh well. There was a big wreck on the main thoroughfare and Danny's carefully calculated directions from the airport to the hotel went right out the window. We had to navigate completely by google maps as we were rerouted with all the other traffic. Once again let me say that Danny did great! Dad was so confident that he actually snoozed a little. We made it to our hotel very safely and this hotel has a parking garage right across the street. After checking into the hotel and settling into our rooms, we went out for lunch around the corner at Powerscourt Shopping Center. We had planned on going to a yarn shop there and discovered that there were several places to eat there also which was very convenient. We ate at a place in the center called Pygmalion that was delicious! After lunch, we visited the yarn shop upstairs and then moseyed our way toward the Hop On Hop Off bus that we planned to ride for the afternoon. Along the way, we tasted some Butler's chocolate which is supposed to be made in Ireland I think. We weren't impressed and decided it wasn't good enough to even get a box. I think France has really really really spoiled me! Because of everything we plan to see while we are in Ireland, we only had this one afternoon to see Dublin. The Hop On Hop Off bus seemed to be the best way to get a good overview of the city. The tour lasted about an hour and a half and we drove ALL over the city and saw things that we definitely wouldn't have seen if we were touring ourselves. Some of the highlights were St. Patrick's Cathedral, Christ Church Cathedral, hearing about the Guinness operation, the HUGE Phoenix Park, and hearing a little bit about the Vikings. There were sooo many things that we saw and they are pretty much a blur now, but it was great to at least drive by and hear about so much. We ate supper at a local pub and had authentic Irish ice cream for dessert. The ice cream is Murphy's and they claim the Kerry Cows that provide the milk for it are rarer than Pandas. I don't know how much of that is true, but the Valhrona Dark Chocolate Ice Cream I ate was outstanding. I'm thinking we might just pay them another visit tomorrow...we'll see. Tomorrow is a driving day into Malone territory. Until then.....

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