Ireland golf vacation guide :
City and regional guide - Dublin
Founded by the Vikings in the 9th century, Dublin (Dubhlinn, meaning the Dark Pool) is much more than just Irelands capital city. It is a vibrant colourful city, which is steeped in history and culture and is without doubt one of the most exciting capitals in the world. Medieval, Georgian and modern architecture converge to create a unique architectural atmosphere, while a fine array of museums and galleries chronicle its interesting history. The "craic" or buzz about the place isundeniable and is best illustrated by the lively spirit of Templebar, while Dublins array of stores, particularly on Grafton Street, proves a haven for the shopper.
Dublin is a thriving centre for culture and has an unrivalled literary tradition, with George Bernard Shaw, William Butler Yeats, James Joyce, Patrick Kavanagh and Samuel Beckett numbered among its favourite literary sons. It is interesting to note that these literary giants often used to meet over a pint of Guinness in some of Dublin most famous pubs and by participating in the Dublin Literary Pub Crawl, visitors can learn a lot about the past and enjoy a pint of Irelands favourite tipple. Famous too as a cradle for musical talent, Dublin has produced bands like the Chieftains, The Dubliners and of course U2.
There is much to do and see in the city and no visit to the capital would be complete without taking a tour around Guinness Brewery. With a history dating back to December 1759, the old Guinness Hopstore is your introduction to the worlds most famous stout. Tours of the brewery include an audiovisual presentation and a sampling or two of Guinness in the comfortable Visitors Bar. Dublins Viking past can be explored at Dublins Viking Adventure, which allows visitors to experience in an interactive way, the sights, smells and sounds of Dyflin Village, built by the Vikings over one thousand years ago. There is also a reconstruction of the excavated Viking settlement at Wood Quay, considered to be the most important of its kind outside Scandinavia itself.
From an architectural perspective, visitors should make sure they visit Christchurch Cathedral, which was founded in 1083 by the Danish King and Bishop of Dublin. Demolished by the Normans in 1172 and rebuilt by them over the next fifty years, one of the main points of interest here is the tomb of Strongbow, who conquered Dublin during the reign of Henry II. The Customs House, with its impressive pillars and copper dome is well worth a viewing, while the GPO (General Post Office) is interesting from an historical perspective, as it was here that Padraig Pearse read the proclamation of independence in 1916. A trip to Trinity College is a must not least for the fact that it houses the world-famous Book of Kells, written centuries ago by Irish monks.
Other attractions, which should not be overlooked, include Dublin Castle, built in 1204 under the orders of King John as part of the citys defensive system; the National Museum, which concentrates on Irish antiquities, art and natural history and houses amongst other famous pieces, the Ardagh Chalice, Cross of Cong and the Tara Brooch; Dublin Writers Museum, which is a celebration of literary Dublin and features exhibits on the lives and works of Joyce, Yeats, Shaw, Beckett and Swift; and also the National Gallery of Ireland, which was opened in 1864 and today offers an impressive collection of art, built up over the years.
Areas that you must visit in Dublin include Templebar, Grafton Street and St. Stephens Green. Templebar is an area peppered with great pubs and restaurants and perfectly reflects the vibrant atmosphere of Dublin. Grafton Street is famous the world over as a great shopping venue, while the much-photographed statue of Molly Malone lies at the foot of this street. St. Stephens Green is a haven of relaxation in the centre of the Dublin City and is a great place to take a stroll amongst the greenery and lakes and take your mind away from the hassles of the city.