Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Last Days in Dublin

On our second-to-last day, we went to the National Aquatic Center (which houses the largest indoor water park in Europe).  We enjoyed the wave pool, lazy river, bubble pool, master blaster water coaster, and water slides.  When we first arrived, it was mostly young school kids (1-3rd grade) on field trips.  I felt a bit out of place standing in line for the water slide (and the line kept getting longer as kids let their friends cut in).  Later in the afternoon, the little kids left and things got a bit roudier with the teens who arrived.  When we had finally turned to prunes, Delaney was ready to leave.  Can you believe we finally got Adam into a swim cap in Europe?? (Speedo suits were not required, but swim caps were!)

On our last day we visited Stephen's Green park (below) and played on the playscape for a while.  Delaney made friends with two girls, Alyce and Eve (who was born on New Year's Eve).  It was a great park!

Later we headed to Dublin Castle which has been at the heart of the city for 800 years.  It burned to the ground (and was blown to rubble by the power magazine exploding) in 1600 and rebuilt to the current style.  It was occupied for years by the Irish Viceroy of the British Empire, until Ireland was free of British rule in 1922.  The palace today is mostly used for state functions and receptions.  The exterior is not particularly striking compared to many other royal castles around Europe.
 This is the royal chapel and the one remaining old tower.  It was the prison tower and the walls were thick enough to survive the explosion that destroyed the rest of the castle.

  The interior is attractive and functional for state receptions.
 Castle garden.  The old coach house is visible on the back edge of the garden.

 St. Patrick's Hall
  During construction work in the 1980's, the old castle wall and city wall were discovered.  Segments of both were preserved under the new building that was constructed.  These are the postern stairs up from the moat/river to the castle.

1 comment:

  1. is this blog about Poland or Ireland, I am getting confused.