Ireland & Dublin

Fáilte go hÉireann (Welcome to Ireland)

Among the romantic preconceptions that visitors bring to Ireland, their expectations of the landscape are the most likely to be fulfilled and indeed surpassed. An uncommon geological richness and the warming effect of the North Atlantic ocean produce an astonishing diversity of terrain on this small island, accompanied by an ever-changing canvas of clouds. Ancient, crumpled mountains tumble into the ocean at the fringes of the land, which is splashed throughout with green, misty lakes and primeval bog.

In the east, the lonely, beautiful granite of the Wicklow Hills sits in utter contrast to the horse-grazing plain of the Curragh just a few dozen kilometres away, and in Connemara on the west coast, the ancient poets' "many-coloured land", you can walk from beach to mountain to fen, from seaweed-strewn inlet to lily-covered lough, in a matter of hours. Coupled with the unhurried nature of rural living, this scenic array encourages leisurely investigation, especially on foot or by bicycle.

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Baile Átha Cliath (Dublin)

Dublin has many landmarks and monuments dating back hundreds of years. One of the oldest is Dublin Castle, which was first founded as a major defensive work on the orders of King John of England in 1204. In contrast, one of Dublin's newest monuments is the Spire of Dublin, officially titled "Monument of Light". It is a 121.2 metres (398 ft) conical spire made of stainless steel and is located on O'Connell Street. During the day it maintains its steel look, but at dusk the monument appears to merge into the sky.

Many people visit Trinity College Dublin (TCD) to see the Book of Kells in the Old Library - an illustrated manuscript created by Irish monks circa. 800 AD. Also located just short walks away from the the TCD campus, the Ha'penny Bridge (an old footbridge over the River Liffey) and the statue of Molly Malone are considered to be two of Dublin's most iconic landmarks.

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