I’ve been to Dublin three times now – and when I get there, a pint of Irish Guinness is always top of my list of things to do. I know it’s a bit of a cliché, but it does seem to taste better in its homeland. And where better to taste it than the place where it’s made – Dublin’s St James’ Gate Brewery. The Guinness Storehouse visitor centre is part of the huge St James’ Gate site, where almost 15 million pints of Guinness are still brewed every year. The site covers over 64 acres and was the largest brewing site in the world when it was built. And for a pretty bargain price too – the lease originally signed by Arthur Guinness lasts for 9000 years at an annual rent of only £45.
Ireland’s answer to Oxford and Cambridge and the country’s oldest university, Trinity College stands in the centre of Dublin and is as much of a tourist attraction as its English counterparts. Unlike them the University of Dublin is made up of just the one college rather than a whole group of them, but it’s a grand one. The college grounds cover over 40 acres of squares, gardens and 300-years-worth of architectural styles. The heart of them is Parliament Square, flanked by imposing columned buildings and centreing around the Campanile bell tower.
Sometimes joy and fun in an experience is directly proportionate to how difficult it is… …the short hike to the lookout point for the Blasket Islands in southern Ireland is one of those circumstances. It was cold and windy for my driving/hiking adventure and with the ever-present misting Irish rain a constant companion every time I stepped out […]
Europe Four Foots -
There’s a secret spot in Ireland. And the locals don’t want you to know it exits. I found it by chance – though I recommend renting a car in Ireland that means a good deal of alone-time for solo travelers. Time spent following the directions of lonely brown heritage signs, standing as sentinels of history […]
The thatch roofed houses peppering the sea of emerald grass fields seems so oddly reminiscent of another era but yet are actually still found in areas all Ireland. Landing on the Aran Islands off of the west coast of Ireland is like taking a full leap into a small and traditional pocket of intensely Irish culture; […]
In an effort to add some regularity here, I’d like to start a weekly post called “A Little Travel Memory.” A photo and mini story from current or past travels…perhaps a neat person I’ve met along the way, or a photo that has a bit of a story but not enough for a full blog post…or […]
Favorite Experiences Four Foots -
It’s the peat. Ireland just has this certain something that makes the country feel incredibly unique; a something that I couldn’t quite identify for the first three weeks I spent in the country. I’ve concluded that if Leprechauns, fairies and the such exist, then surely they all congregate in Ireland’s “Wild West.” From Galway City […]
Affectionately referred to as “Irish mothers’ milk” by some and “the pint that drinks like a meal” by others, Guinness is a cultural right of passage on a visit to Ireland…and as a fiercely Irish yank (although to be clear, I’m not actually a yank…but in Ireland, if you’re American, they call you a yank […]
The heart and sole of Ireland lives in the country’s pubs – and I don’t mean because of the Guinness, although let me assure you that plays a role. But it’s the country’s music and warm enthusiasm that keeps the yanks like myself enthralled with Ireland’s rich history and amazing music. I have to admit, […]
Oscar Wilde described the Connemara region as a “savage beauty” – he was surely referring to the rough landscape that is largely covered with peat bogs, rocky hills, and interlocking chains of lakes. I’ve got to say, if ever there was a lonely landscape, it would have to be this region of Ireland. To really […]