In the summer of 2019 our family had the chance to spend almost three months in Dublin and I’ll try to tell you about everything interesting, popular or not, in the city. Overall, I wouldn’t say that I liked Dublin much, unlike Ireland. If you go out of the city everything is gorgeous, but Dublin itself not so much… There were amazing places, of course, and I will tell you about one of them now.
Dublin is composed by different boroughs, some of them like small towns. Sandycove is one of them, on the sea side, small, cozy and beautiful. There are many cafes and bakeries, as well as lovely colourful houses on the promenade.
You’ll see the “lovely” Irish weather in all the pictures. Just a reminder, they were taken in July 🙂
Sandycove is famous for it’s link to the famous James Joyce, who came to visit another Irish poet Oliver St. John Gogarty. There are few memorials connected to Joyce, one of them is the memorial tree. It is said that he started to wrote his most famous work “Ulysses” here.
As you can see, the view is amazing:
Close by is the Sandycove castle, actually a villa from the 19 century, originally called Cove House. The house is private and can’t be seen from the inside.
If you go straight on this road you’ll reach the biggest attraction in Sandycove – the beach. Don’t expect something amazing, but it is quite popular among the locals and during our visit, despite that it was during low tide, it was quite full. The sand in low tide is quite amazing – there are many sea shells and little creatures left by the water. We had quite a fun time there.
Forty Foot is one of the most famous spots for sea jumping in Ireland and is visited during the whole year. It’s name came from the 40 British battery located here.
Quite nearby is the James Joyce Museum, located in a Martello tower. Martello towers are small defensive forts that were built by the British in response to a threatened invasion by Napoleon Bonaparte at the beginning of the 19th century. Over 100 Martello towers were built in Britain and about 50 around Ireland. Around Dublin, the capital, there are 16 Martello sites to the south of the city and 12 to the north. The tower, here in Sandycove, is a typical Martello tower with three stories and a well-protected first floor entrance.
Nowadays, of course, the Sandycove tower enjoys worldwide fame as the location James Joyce chose for the opening chapter of his masterpiece, ‘Ulysses’. The tower now houses a museum dedicated to the life and works of the great writer and visitors from all over the world delight in retracing the steps of Joyce’s characters as they begin what is, arguably, the finest novel ever written.
Going back to the train station we saw an interesting sculpture on the promenade.
Аs well as more beautiful houses:
The train station is next to the harbour, which is quite big and impressive.
There are few interesting monuments, the most famous one is the one for the Dublin Hobblers. It is in the form of a tower of lifejackets suggesting the hazards associated with the sea and the vulnerability of man when faced – with its terrible force. It is in the form of a lighthouse and is a symbol of hope and man’s will to endure and survive,
The last site in Sandycove I will tell you about is the Dún Laoghaire Oratory, which is the last remaining survivor of the old Dominican Convent in Dun Laoghaire.
The Oratory Chapel is dedicated to the memory of boys from the local Christian Brothers School. In 1914 and 1915, they joined the army and fought in the First World War, in the trenches and mud of the western front. The regiment they joined fought mostly in Belgium, where many of these young Irishmen died.
After the war, Belgium people from the local town were touched by the sacrifice. As a memorial to the young Irishmen, the townspeople donated and dedicated this sacred heart figure of Christ.
The chapel was then built especially to accommodate the sacred heart figure of Christ. But it was just a bare building, with plain white walls. But then, over a 19-year period following the War, the walls were all painted by a remarkable woman. She was a nun, called Sister Concepta Lynch, and she took this job on using all her spare time from duties at the convent.
That’s all from this lovely Dublin borrow and I recommend a visit, especially in the summer. Although the weather wasn’t great at all, we had a lovely day.
Stay tuned and don’t stop travelling!