Sunshine in Dublin

On our last day in Dublin the sun was out in full and you couldn’t have asked for a better picture weather. We started by visiting Christ Church, the cathedral right next to our hotel. The cathedral boasts in its catacombs a mummified cat and rat, aka “Tom and Jerry” which were found when the organ was cleaned on the occasion of Händel’s (Handel) performance of Messiah in Dublin.
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Good plan but bad execution since the church had its Sunday service and didn’t let anybody in until 12:30. A time where we should get the airport bus. So that was that with the churches in Ireland, only saw the one in Howth.

With a lot of time at our hands what were we to do? We started by touring the grounds of Dublin Castle again, this time in full sunshine instead of rain.IMG_8591IMG_8593See the colors on these houses? Looks almost sponsored by Google.

And then hunger was guiding us back to Dame Street where we came across the Queen of Tarts.IMG_8648The place inside was super small and packed with all kinds of knickknacks.IMG_8595IMG_8596IMG_8599
We ordered tea, which came in a big old pot, salmon for Andrea and vegetarian breakfast for me. Franz abstained from anything but coffee.IMG_8598IMG_8600IMG_8601IMG_8602
Everything was great but the red pepper relish was so delicious that we each bought a jar to bring home, along with some scones! Here they were the real deal and came with butter and jam.

Thus invigorated we set out for another round of walking through the city. We had set our sights on the Merrion Square the heart of Georgian Dublin. The square consists of a park around which artist were selling their paintings and beautiful Georgian buildings. While looking through my pictures just now I noticed that I got apparently so distracted by the paintings that I never took a picture of the buildings. Never mind I found you a robin, something for the bird lovers again.
First stop though was the statue of Molly Malone on the way to the square.IMG_8606IMG_8616IMG_8621IMG_8610IMG_8615

As said before Dublin really takes care of its tourists and this shows in the little details. Since Ireland drives on the other side than Europe mainland all street crossings have these road markers.IMG_8627IMG_8628 For all the ones who wanted to take the other left it even has an arrow.

Since we had to take the airport link at around 12:30 we were on a tight schedule especially in the light that we still wanted to go to the Book of Kells shop at Trinity College to buy some things. The store and the museum opened at noon sharp so we had to time our arrival well. There was only so much to see at the Merrion Square that after a round in the park and watching the houses surrounding it, we decided we needed to warm up somewhere. So while walking back to the college we found the National Gallery of Ireland. With free admission, an inviting looking coffee place and a museum shop it looked like a great choice. While drinking coffee we noticed that it appeared to have an older building incorporated.

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And then it was time for our last stop, Trinity College. Doesn’t the place look great in sunshine? I almost wished being a student again, just to get a chance to spend a semester there. But only almost.IMG_8633IMG_8637IMG_8638

After a quick purchase of a college cup with the names of all its great students on it and a book about the Battle of Clontarf (you cannot own too many books about history) we rushed back to the hotel. Our vacation was almost at an end. Some more pictures from along the way to the hotel.IMG_8640IMG_8644IMG_8645

Then on to the bus and off to the airport. Sitting on top in the first row I could take some last pictures of this beautiful city. I still can’t get my mind around that they have palm trees in the streets (ok, so maybe not trees but similar plants associated with southern climate).IMG_8655IMG_8658IMG_8665IMG_8666IMG_8669IMG_8670IMG_8671

We left Dublin with a little delay but got so the chance to shop some more. Some more cheese and salmon for home. The cheese then got almost attacked by an overzealous German security guy at the layover in Cologne. He had to make sure it was not too soft and in his enthusiasm to check this, he left a thumb print in it. What an end to a perfect weekend.
Yours, Pollybert

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A rainy morning in Dublin

Since we never left the hotel the first evening we decided to get an early start the next day. But when I woke up I still felt as if it was night. This view out of my window explains it all.IMG_8277

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

And it didn’t get better during the day. It was actually amazing to see that the sky stayed all day in different shades of grey.
We left our hotel around 8:30 AM and walked in the direction of Temple Bar. On the way I noticed these prominent wifi signs announcing to the world that Dublin surely must be the wifi capital.

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In search of something to eat we took our first steps in the city. We ended up having breakfast at Bewley’s Oriental Cafe. Inside it looked like a grand old place and the right spot to eat real Irish food. All of us therefore ordered a traditional Irish breakfast.IMG_8280IMG_8282IMG_8284IMG_8281

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The breakfast turned out to be not as great as expected, it also didn’t look so good (although not at that moment, but looking back now with experience). Over the next couple of days we had way better fares. Also the Bewley’s Oriental Cafe seemed to be quite a touristic place, most of the other customers looked like tourists and everybody was ordering the traditional breakfast.

Upon leaving we walked along Grafton Street looking at shops and their waresIMG_8286IMG_8287 and then finally made our way back to the City Hall to begin the Free Walking Tour.IMG_8278
We met Brian our tour guide, a very passionate Dubliner and understandably proud of his city.

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This picture is actually from the end of the tour at Trinity College, but he was still smiling then which I found very endearing.
The tour itself started at Dublin Castle and slowly we made our way through the historic part of the city.IMG_8291-0IMG_8293-0IMG_8295-0IMG_8299

St. Patrick’s CathedralIMG_8304
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Christ Church Cathedral which has a mummified cat and rat aka “Tom and Jerry” in its catacombs.IMG_8314

The “Temple Bar” in the Temple Bar district.IMG_8317

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Street Art
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Dublin at 1:30pm.IMG_8330

Trinity CollegeIMG_8332IMG_8333IMG_8336

I don’t know if this really gets transported but the weather was miserable on this first day! I felt like a drowned cat at the end of the tour and it was not the fault of Brian the guide! He really did his best to keep upbeat and not let the weather dampen his spirits. But by then my feet were more than damp and my spirits needed a little pick me up. Which they got at our next stop. But more from this later.
Yours, Pollybert