Monday, November 8, 2010

Walking Tours of Dublin: Docklands

As mentioned previously, Architecture Tours Ireland are about to get going with several different walking tours of Dublin. This weekend, I did the Docklands tour. The weather was, well, rubbish. We met at the Customs House. Our tour guide, Eoin, introduced himself and we got started, talking about the docks in general, and of course the Customs House. Then sheets of rain appeared and we had to hide in the portico of the Customs House, which actually doesn't provide that much shelter. We stayed there for about 10 mins, due to the uncanny ability of one man to tell us exactly when the rain would stop. RTÉ should snap him up! We pretended it was Busáras as well so that we wouldn't get ridiculously wet while we heard about it. The rain stopped after 10 mins and we moved off through the IFSC, weaving out on to the docks occasionally. We examined different residential and office blocks in there and talked about the new Spencer Dock bridge, which is shaped like a manta-ray. We crossed the Liffey on the Samuel Beckett and then faced it to hear all about it and the new convention centre ( I like to call in the Coke Can building). We walked up Admiral Brown walk (yes, that Irish guy who set up the Argentinian navy) past a perfect little playground to Grand Canal Square and talked about all the buildings there. The tour ended there, again coming in around 1 hour 45 mins. The only downside of the tour was that it's not circular so I had to walk back up the quays to my car. It was far too wet for Dublin Bikes! Despite the rain, for this time, I managed to forget the state the country is in, and for the most part, heard about buildings made in the last 15 years - proof positive that some good things have come out of the Celtic Tiger.

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