Monday, March 23, 2009

Dublin

We started our visit to Dublin with a trip to Kilmainham Goal (or jail). It was opened in 1796 and was often used by the British to hold political prisoners from the numerous Irish rebellions and uprisings. It was here that the leaders of the Easter Rising of 1916 were shot and made martyrs for the Irish independence movement. In addition, the jail was a model for its time, implementing the latest research in both its construction and treatment of prisoners. The east wing was remodeled in the Victorian style with single occupancy cells (a new idea in those days) and lots of windows (to remind the prisoners of their lost freedom).You might recognize the prison, as it has been used as the set for many TV shows, movies and even a U2 music video. During the hour long tour we learned the story of the fight for Irish independence and about daily life in the prison.The next stop in the tour of Dublin was the Guinness Storehouse - a beer Disneyland for adults. While no actual beer is brewed in the Storehouse, it is 7 levels of everything Guinness. (The rumor is they don't let you into the actual brewery because you would see the Budweiser trucks leaving :). The first level tells about the four ingredients found in every pint: barley, hops, yeast, and water. Did you know every batch of Guinness is brewed with the same strain of yeast? A batch of the yeast is kept in a vault in the director's office for emergencies.
I enjoyed the floor that displayed the various advertising campaigns from over the years. Here is my favorite:The Gravity Bar is located on the top floor of the Storehouse and provides you with a pint and a 360° view of Dublin. You can take your own tour of the Storehouse here.
We finished off the day with a trip to Brazen Head Inn, the oldest pub in Dublin (c. 1198). We were treated to a Trad session with Rafferty. I really enjoyed watching the woman play the electric violin.
More photos here

2 comments:

The Blonde Duck said...

Looks like fun!

Rebecca Louise. said...

I LOVE LOVE LOVE Ireland. I remember going to the Guiness factory. I thought I would hate it but thought it was great. I loved all the cobbled streets in Dublin - probably my favourite thing about it was the architecture.

Have or planning on London?! I could give u the best guide there as i live so near.

Have fun! X.