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Cinnamon patrol

Mr and Mrs Lili Wedding

 

Dublin in NZ Herald

A deluge of posts, I know.

From http://www.nzherald.co.nz/travel/news/article.cfm?c_id=7&objectid=10578079.

Dublin: Lucking in with the Irish

Having a pint or three in Dublin's party central, Temple Bar, is compulsory. Photo / Tourism Ireland
Gregor Paul takes a sip of Guinness and points out the top 10 must-see places when you visit Ireland's popular capital.

1 Visit the Guinness Brewery

Come on - you have to. Even if you are not super enamoured by the black stuff, even if you think it takes like alcoholic Vegemite, the brewery trip still offers plenty.

It is not as horribly corporate and tacky as it could be.

The building is modern, clever, stylish and, as with most things in Ireland, there is a charm about the hosts that helps to sell the whole experience.

And, if nothing else, the trip is worth it for the views from the top floor, where Guinness have thoughtfully built a bar.

2 Visit the Dublin Writers' Museum

Dublin has made a long and significant contribution to the literary world. The list of famous writers to come out of Dublin includes James Joyce, George Orwell, Samuel Beckett and Oscar Wilde.

The Writers' Museum in Parnell Square brings to life that celebrated past with intriguing personal insights. Little known facts, such as Wilde being a promising pugilist during his days at Trinity College, are revealed.

Other little nuggets inform us that Samuel Beckett, had he not turned out to be one of the most influential writers of the 20th century, would also have made a name for himself in cricket.

3 Watch Gaelic sports at Croke Park

The Irish have retained a healthy regard for their own Irishness, their own sense of identity. Which is why their own Irish sports continue to thrive.

Hurling and Gaelic football are the two biggest sports by far in Ireland and there is nothing better than going to the home of those games, Croke Park, and watching them played.

The 83,000 seat stadium is quite magnificent - it is where the All Blacks played Ireland last November.

It is also, of course, the site of the infamous November 21, 1920 Bloody Sunday massacre, in which British troops fired on the crowd during a football match. Fourteen people died in what was one of the most significant events of the Irish war of independence.

The emotion is intense and the experience is never to be forgotten.

4 Visit the O'Connell St Post Office.

What? A post office - what's the point in that? It's just one those things that has to be done. Everyone who goes to Dublin ends up going there. It's a landmark by which all Dubliners guide others.

The O'Connell St Post Office was also the main stronghold of the Irish Volunteers during the Easter Uprising in 1916.

5 Go hunting for U2

Unlike other European countries, the Irish don't have a punitive tax regime that encourages the rich and famous to head elsewhere. There are even incentives to encourage the rich and famous to stay (Ed: Wrong! U2 are famously headquatered in The Netherlands who offer better tax breaks to artists than Ireland).

No one in Ireland is richer or more famous than U2, and frontman Bono can be spotted in the suburb of Dalkay (Ed: Wrong, it's Dalkey). And if you don't find him, enjoy the cute village.

6 See where Posh and Becks got hitched

That's right, the world-famous David Beckham and Spice Girl Victoria were married in Luttrellstown Castle on the outskirts of Dublin in 1999.

The castle dates back to the 15th century and over the years has been owned by the great and good of Ireland, including the Guinness family. Now it is one of the best five-star golf resorts in Europe.

7 Stroll through the grounds of Trinity College

Dublin owes its fame as a literary city to Trinity College - recognised as one of the best and most creative tertiary institutions in Europe.

Not only is it full of smart people, it is in the heart of the city and the fabulous old buildings are flanked by ornate and tranquil grounds.

8 Play golf at the K Club

Scotland is recognised as the home of golf, but Ireland's reputation as a venue of some quality for this curious sport is growing fast. The K Club, on the outskirts of the city, hosted the Ryder Cup in 2006. It is a high quality golf course and if you are lucky, you might find yourself playing at the same time as some of the world's best professionals, who are known to sneak in and out.

9 Have a night out at Temple Bar

It is horribly cliched. It is the domain of stag and hen parties from across the continent, but Temple Bar, on the south bank of the River Liffey in the drinking heart of Dublin, has to be visited. It is loud, brash and not for the faint-hearted but, as long as you respect what you are in for, it can be fun.

10 Head down Grafton St

Grafton St is the beating heart of the capital. It is where you can shop, drink, eat and people-watch. The power of the Irish economy can be seen in action along this street.

The locals have ferocious spending power and there is something inspiring about watching a nation flex its muscle through the power of its consumers (Ed: My god, how out of date is this?).


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