Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Ireland Day One

After flying over seven hours we landed in Dublin. It was a beautiful day, and I was in Ireland, what could make a day better? The airport is 16 kilometers north of the city of Dublin. The city itself is horseshoe shaped and built along the banks of the River Liffey and Dublin Bay.


The first thing I noticed was that the signs were in Gaelic (Irish) and English. Most of Ireland speaks English, though the official language of the country is Gaelic. Most people in Ireland learn English at a young age. English names are often corrupted versions of the Gaelic names. The difference is that the Irish names have meaning. Kill or Cill means church or cell, and dates back to the days when monasteries were spread all over Ireland.

Dun meaning for or fortification came fro the times when Ireland was invaded. Towns that began with this name were built around forts.

Balli or Ballya means the town of the castle. Those are many towns that were built around castles.

The River Liffey is horseshoe shaped and runs roughly 8- miles from the mountains down to the sea. Dublin is in the area of the Liffey Valley.

Dublin has many parks within the city limits, and many are small roughly, one block square, but Phoenix Park is the largest enclosed park in Europe. It is 1,063 acres of park land, two times the size of Central Park in New York City. It is with in walking distance of the city center. There are two residents who live in the park, the President of Ireland and the American Ambassador.

The American Ambassador has such a place of honor because of America's support of Ireland in its fight for independence.

As we drove into the city we passed by the Guinness Store house which we will tour while here.   I got a kick out of this sign that we drove past which said "Guinness for Strength"
Dublin has a light rail system as part of its public transportation system.  I love the look of the train. I would love to have one like this in Anchorage.

We were dropped off at our hotel and had time to clean up and relax for a but before setting off on our city tour, which included a stop to see the Book of Kells. More next time.....

1 comment:

  1. Wow. Thanks for posting the photos and a bit of a lesson as well. I did not know any of that stuff. I look forward to seeing more and learning more about Ireland.

    ReplyDelete

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