We took off along the canal to get to Dublin Castle, where I was fascinated by an exhibit of sand sculptures in the courtyard.
Close by the castle, we visited St. Werburgh’s Church of 1178 origin. I thought this was a handsome little church, strangely military-ish, especially given the fact St. Werburgh was actually a woman. The organ pipes were especially pretty.
Back on the castle grounds...
Behind the photographer who took the shot above (that would be me) sits the Chester Beatty Library. Chester was an American mining engineer/magnate back in the first half of the last century who enjoyed traveling and collecting books, art, manuscripts, New Testament texts, etc. He retired to Ireland and bequeathed his collection to a public trust that is supported by the Irish government. So admission is free! While we were there, a special exhibit of Mattise’s works was going on. Nice. Truly a lovely place to visit and then have lunch, which we did.
A hop, skip, and jump from the castle is Christ Church Cathedral, an Anglican cathedral built in the 1800s on a 1171 foundation, which in turn was built on the site of a church built by a Danish king of Dublin in 1038. Whew! Did you get all that? The current structure is huge, and the 12th century crypt is very cool. Supposedly, the heart of St. Laurence O’Toole is encased in a heart-shaped box somewhere in the cathedral; I didn’t see it, did you guys? Well, no matter – it was stolen in March of this year. Now why would anyone want a moldy old heart from the 12th century, even if it was a saint’s? Shocking.
From there we walked along the Liffey River to get to the train station for schedule information, then on we went – by bus – to the National Botanic Gardens in Glasvenin. Even on a gray day, it was so beautiful.
After a quick walkthrough (it was getting late by now), we bussed back to town and had fish and chips for dinner before heading home to prepare for the next day - traveling to Glenbeigh.