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Dublin, Ireland

Unfortunately, no leprechaun sightings!

Greetings! Our next adventure took us to Dublin, Ireland for a few days. I must admit I wasn't sure what to expect in Ireland. I thought it would be similar to Scotland and England (not that there is anything wrong with Scotland or England, I enjoy those countries as well), but I was pleasantly surprised. The people in Dublin were very friendly and the food was fantastic! I was really expecting the food to be more along the lines of standard pub fare, but the food scene in Dublin is quite spectacular. The city is also very walkable. We walked all around Dublin and the only time we took transportation was to and from the airport. Our trip to Dublin was about three days in total, so I figured I would divide the posts into what we did each day, separately. This particular post will focus on the city and some interesting things about the city.

We took another Ryanair flight from London to Dublin. The flight time is about 50 minutes in total and we even managed to get in about 30 minutes early. Again, I had a great experience on Ryanair and so far, I have no complaints with them. From the airport we took a taxi to our AirBnb in Stoneybatter. Our taxi driver (no Ubers in Dublin :( ) decided to play tour guide, unbeknownst to us, and took us on a very round about and very expensive way to our AirBnb. He took us through Phoenix Park, one of the largest European city parks. It is where the Irish President resides, in a miniature White House (Áras an Uachtaráin), which according to the taxi driver, is what the White House in the States was based off of. I must admit, there are striking similarities. On the other side of the park, is the US Ambassador's residence. The Dublin Zoo is also located in Phoenix Park. He also took us by a statue of the Duke of Wellington, who was born in Dublin, and through a random affluent neighborhood called Castleknock. Although, we appreciated the driver's knowledge, we did not appreciate being taken advantage of. Note to self, we will be researching the route from the airport to the AirBnbs for future trips and directing the driver on what roads to take. It's annoying to think we have to research routes to take, but this experience taught us a valuable lesson. This little incident by no means spoiled our trip. After reaching our AirBnb and picking up our keys, we set out to explore Dublin. We went to Christ Church Cathedral and also did the Guinness Tour. The second day we went to Dublin Castle and Trinity College and on the third day we went to St. Patrick's Cathedral and a few of the museums and gardens in Dublin. I will speak more about each of those places in separate posts.

Dublin is the largest city in Ireland and is also the capital. Dublin gets its name from the Galic "dubh linn" or “black pool” where the Poddle Stream met the River Liffey to form a deep pool at Dublin Castle. The area where this pool was located is now covered by the castle gardens at Dublin Castle. Ireland is a relatively new state, becoming independent in 1922. The Anglo-Irish treaty was signed between Irish Republican and British leaders and ended the Irish War of Independence. The treaty established a self-governing Irish Free State and provided for Northern Ireland (established in 1920) to become part of the United Kingdom. Ireland is the only country in the world to elect two successive female presidents: Mary Robinson and Mary McAleese. The current president is Michael Higgins. The role of the Irish President is mostly ceremonial. Elections are held every seven years and the president can be elected for two terms. The flag of Ireland is green, white and orange. Green is for nationalism, white for peace, and orange for unionism, according to one of our tour guides.

City of Dublin:
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Irish Priminister's Office (which is next to the Natural History Museum):
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Molly Malone Statue, on Suffolk Street:
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Oldest Pub in Ireland, The Brazen Head:
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The famous Temple Bar:
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Doors of Dublin:
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A few of the amazing restaurants in Dublin:
Wuff: http://www.wuff.ie
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Slice: http://www.asliceofcake.ie/index.php
Mi Thai: http://www.mithai.ie/MiThai2/
Keough's Cafe: https://keoghscafe.ie

Stoneybatter. This was an excellent area to stay in. It was just a 20 minute walk from the center of Dublin.
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We had a fantastic time in Dublin and hope to go back to Ireland to explore other cities! On to Day 1 in Dublin...

Posted by LCP 00:12 Archived in Ireland Tagged temple of ireland dublin doors bar guinness liffey molly malone ryanair airbnb brazenhead Comments (2)

Palace of Holyroodhouse

Edinburgh, Scotland

Our second day in Edinburgh, we took a short walk to Palace of Holyroodhouse, which sits across from the Scottish Parliament and next to Holyrood Park.

The Palace of Holyroodhouse, also known as Holyrood Palace, is the official residence of the British Monarch, Queen Elizabeth II, in Scotland. It is located along the Royal Mile in Edinburgh, at the opposite end to Edinburgh Castle. It has served monarchs since the 16th century. The Queen spends one week here at the beginning of the summer to carry out her engagements. Unfortunately, we were not allowed to take photos inside of the palace, but I was able to get some pictures of the entrance, the gardens and Abbey. The Palace is probably most known for the murder of David Rizzio, Mary, Queen of Scots', secretary in 1566. The murder was organized by Henry, Lord Darnley, the Queen's second husband. He was extremely jealous of Rizzio's influence over Mary. Mary was at the time pregnant with Lord Darnley and her only child, the future James VI and I. There is a blood stained spot in the Queen's Outer Chamber that is marked as the spot where Rizzio was murdered. It was quite creepy to still see the spot there, honestly. After her secretary's murder, Mary fled Holyroodhouse for Edinburgh Castle.

The tour was fantastic, I just wished we could have taken pictures. It definitely felt more cozy than other palaces and had a more masculine decor, but still tasteful in my opinion. During the tour we were able to see: the Forecourt, the Quadrangle, the Great Stair, the Royal dining room (this room had a beautiful pastel green color theme), the Throne Room (two upholstered throne chairs for King George V and Queen Mary were in here), the Evening Drawing Room (this room had fantastic tapestries on the walls), the Morning Drawing Room, because you can't draw into the evening drawing room in the morning, (this room had a beautiful mahogany settee covered with silk and wool embroidery, and I believe this room is where the Queen gives private audiences to dignitaries), the King's Bedchamber, the King's Closet, the Great Gallery (there were dozens of wonderful paintings lining the walls of this room), the Queen's Lobby, the Queen's Ante-Chamber, the Queen's Bedchamber, and the Mary, Queen of Scots' Chambers (which are located in James V's tower). Mary's Bedchamber had a view of the forecourt. The Outer Chamber had a nice display of relics including the Darnley Jewel and some of Mary's embroidery work from when she was exiled by Elizabeth I.

Palace of Holyroodhouse: https://www.rct.uk/visit/palace-of-holyroodhouse

Forecourt of Palace of Holyroodhouse
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Gardens to the left of the entrance
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View of the Holyrood Park to the right of the entrance
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The Quadrangle
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Remains of Holyrood Abbey. Holyrood Abbey is a ruined abbey of the Canons Regular in Edinburgh, Scotland. The abbey was founded in 1128 by King David I.
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View from Holyrood Abbey into the Gardens
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Gardens
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Despite not being able to take pictures, I really enjoyed the palace tour and would most definitely return. I would recommend going when they open to avoid crowds. We did go when they opened and there was a line.

Onto Edinburgh Castle...

Posted by LCP 00:41 Archived in Scotland Tagged edinburgh palace of queen abbey mary holyroodhouse lord holyrood scots rizzio darnley Comments (1)

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