If you remember from my first blog post, I met a man named Gerry on my flight from Philadelphia to Dublin. Today, Gerry and I made lunch plans and he offered yet again to show me a few of the greatest views Dublin has to offer. He drove me up the coast of Dublin, stopping along the way to let me take it all in.
We started off along the coast of a village called Dalkey.
|The climb to the top was definitely a test of my rock-climbing abilities...|
|My first close-up view of the Irish Sea|
|To the north|
|To the south|
|In the distance, two towers are visible, which mark the entrance to Dublin Bay|
|"Snowy" wanted to play fetch with us|
Next we travelled north along the coast to a small beach called Sandycove.
|"Where the sidewalk ends..."|
"Forty Foot" is a famous swimming spot. Gerry told me it used to be a bathing spot for men, and so there is a sign to remind you that "Togs must be worn..."
More on Forty Foot here: http://outdoorswimming.ie/Co/Dublin/40_foot.html
|Walk right in...the water's grand.|
|They've got guts. Swimming in January and the air was 12 degrees Celsius (52 Fahrenheit)|
|Gerry and myself|
Still traveling north...we came to Dun Laoghaire.
|Again to the south...|
|...and to the north(east)|
While in Dun Laoghaire, we visited the James Joyce Museum located in one of Dublin's 26 Martello Towers.
|The stairway up the tower was quite narrow, to say the least|
|The three-crowned flag that represents County Dublin|
|At the top of the tower. The track around the edge was used to |
rotate the cannon to face any direction.
About Martello Towers: http://www.martellotowersutton.com/Tower_History.html
We stopped for lunch at a diner called Teddy's, located just next door the the famous Teddy's Ice Cream Parlor. I had my first traditional Irish breakfast (for lunch), which did not disappoint.
|The traditional Irish Breakfast:Poached eggs, sausage, Irish bacon, tomatoes,|
brown bread toast, and black and white pudding (another type of sausage)
Black Pudding: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Black_pudding
White Pudding: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/White_pudding
|A street performer who used her feet to make the puppets dance as she played|
Also in Dun Laoghaire was Pier Seapoint, where the tide was high, according to Gerry.
|It seemed we found a sailboat race|
We crossed a wooden bridge at Dollymount to Bull Island, which is one of two bridges from which you can gain access to the island.
|The two towers to Dublin Bay are visible from Bull Island|
|One of the ferries returning most likely from the U.K.|
|A boat named "Our Lass"|
Saturday, 24 January 2015
Today was the first time I left County Dublin. The International Students' Society here at UCD hosted a day trip to County Wicklow, which not far south from where we are located, but is worlds apart in terms of the view. The Wicklow mountains are absolutely gorgeous despite only being a couple thousand meters tall (Ireland's tallest mountain is 1,038 meters - 3,406 feet). We were blessed with beautiful sunshine throughout the day.
Our first stop was to Powerscourt Gardens. This National Irish landmark has been ranked the 3rd most beautiful garden in the world, and with good reason. It consists of the gardens, the estate, a golf course, waterfall, the Pepperpot Tower, Japanese Gardens, lake, Pet Cemetary, and a trail that circles through most of the sites, with the exception of the waterfall (which I unfortunately didn't get to see) and the golf course.
You can read more about the Gardens here: http://powerscourt.com/
|Brent, Hannah, and myself|
|A closer view of the lake.|
|The estate, now owned by the Slazenger family|
|The Pepperpot Tower|
|Hannah and myself|
|The view from the top of the tower|
|Breathtaking views from the trail itself|
|View from the trail of the Japanese Gardens|
|Myself, Brent, and Hannah|
|Walkways throughout the garden were built into the surrounding stone|
|The trail wound around the lake, and this is the view from the other side.|
|On the other side of the lake, we found horses!|
|Hannah, myself, and Brent|
|Through a gate and past the fountain...|
|...was the Pet Cemetery. Many of the pets were deceased from 1914-1970 or so. |
The headstones indicated the cemetery contained every species from dogs
to Angus cows to miniature and full-sized horses!
Our next destination, located in Wicklow National Park, was the well-known Glendalough Valley. This valley has both an Upper and Lower Lake, a graveyard, and an ancient monastery within.
Read more on Glendalough here: http://www.glendalough.ie/
|The ancient monastic site, founded by St. Kevin|
|We continued along the trail toward the lakes...|
|These marshy areas made me feel like I was staring into a magic forest of sorts|
|The Upper Lake|
|Brent, Hannah, and myself|
|Sunset on the bus ride back|
|Gavin and myself|
|Back: Paul, Richard, Nicole, Hannah, myself, Christine|
Front: Eli, Connor