Up-coming tour :Glendalough’s Glacial Valley and The medieval Monastic town Date: August 23rd 2015 Time: 10 A.M.
Saint Patrick’s Cathedral tour photos: August 9th, 2015
The Trinity College Dublin tour photos: July 31st, 2015
The Crypts of St Michan’s Church in Dublin
Underneath the church are five long burial vaults containing the mummified remains of many of Dublin’s most influential 17th, 18th and 19th century families, including the legendary Shears brothers and the highly decorated coffins of the Earl’s of Leitrim. The exact date of construction is unknown though in their present form they may well date from the rebuilding of the church in 1685. The constant dry atmosphere has caused the mummification of the bodies and the preservation of the coffins.
Since Victorian times visitors have descended the vault steps to see the mummies and Bram Stoker, creator of the “Dracula” stories is believed to have visited the vaults in the company of his family. In one vault can be seen the remains of the “Crusader” though in fact he is only 650 years dead. The early visitors to the vaults were responsible for many of the myths and legends surrounding the bodies, though modern scientific investigations have cast doubts on many of these stories.
Nevertheless, a visit to the Crypts to see the historic mummies is a remarkable experience.
Dublin Castle and the castle’s Undercroft
Dublin Castle: Originally built in the 13th century on a site previously settled by the Vikings it functioned as a military fortress, a prison, treasury, courts of law and the seat of English Administration in Ireland for 700 years. Rebuilt in the 17th, 18th, 19th and 20th centuries, Dublin Castle is now used for important State receptions and Presidential Inaugurations. The State Apartments, Undercroft, Chapel Royal, Craft Shop, Heritage Centre and Restaurant are open to visitors. (On occasions Dublin Castle can be closed at very short notice for Government business). Access for visitors with disabilities to State Apartments, Chapel Royal and restaurant.
Very little, apart from two corner towers and a short stretch of stone wall, remains of the medieval Dublin Castle. However, during restoration work carried out by the Office if Public Works in the 1980s the massive lower section of the Gunpowder Tower, one of Dublin Castle’s original corner bastions, was discovered as were the tower steps leading up to a postern gate, a section of the old town wall and the River Poddle itself which once formed the moat. These ruins were restored and preserved under the foundations of the new buildings and now a very evocative part of the official guided tour of the castle.
Dublin Castle visitation photos: July 10th, 2015
St Michan’s Church visitation photos: July 3rd, 2015
Bray to Greystones Trekking, Bray Head Summit and
Wicklow Mountains tours photos: July 24-25th, 2015
The cliff trekking from Bray to Greystones is one of Bray’s most popular attractions, for both visitors and locals alike. The coastal walk winds along the side of Bray Head and has some of the most stunning views of the East Coast. The Cliff Walk is about 7 kilometres, starting from the bandstand on the Promenade and ending at Greystones harbour. The walk takes about 2 hours to complete and is suitable for all abilities. The Cliff Walk follows the rail line so you can conveniently return to Bray on the Dart retracing your steps and reliving the view from the comfort of the train!
The Cliff Walk is home to numerous types of seabirds and various types of colourful wildflowers that add to the natural beauty of the walk. The keen observer also might spot dolphins, black harbour porpoises and basking sharks swimming in the waters around the Cliff.
This is a medium to tough walk of around 7 to 8 km, along a marked trail, mostly in reasonable condition, but with a few rough patches, and mostly gentle climbing with some steeper bits.
The walk is best done in the direction Greystones to Bray for two reasons: in order to have the sun behind you rather than in your face, and in order to start of in the location with less frequent transport, and end up at a location where the services are frequent, and your arrival time does not need to be exactly planned.
This walk includes some sections where there are unguarded cliffs nearby, and some sections subject to erosion, children should be strictly supervised, and younger children are not advised.
Taking water or supplies is a good idea, as the walk can take from 2 to 3 hours depending on pace and number of stops.