Church and StateSeptember 5, 2018 in Ireland ⋅ ⛅ 16 °C
Traveling business class is a guilty pleasure - it is very expensive, it is indulgent and it is so nice to arrive at your destination well rested - thank you Aeroplan points. We breeze through customs, get our bags and our SIM card and catch a taxi to our hotel Trinity Townhomes (née Lodge - they changed it last week). We booked the place last year; it is a Georgian four story building and has been lovingly renovated with everything but an elevator - we are staying at the top floor - Laurie’s bag weighs 40.2 lbs (she is “kind of” packing for two).
It is just after noon when we head out to Dublin Castle the first stop on our trip today, having been here before I know the place like the back of my hand and we only get lost once along the way. Dublin Castle is the seat of power in Ireland since the time of the Vikings. It’s not super castle-y any more but has lovely state apartments “Versailles like” or perhaps rather “Versailles light”. We arrive at 12:30 and sign up for a 2 PM tour so we take the time to view the Chester Beatty Library of manuscripts - an amazing collection of illustrated and written works. It is far more interesting than the singular Book of Kells and far more impressive in its breadth and depth. They have a 150AD manuscript of the writings of the New Testament (very simple), some early Qur’an’s (very detailed) and some early illustrated Bibles. In addition they have a whole section of far eastern manuscripts and drawings. There is also a fascinating study of religions.
The tour of the castle and state apartments is also very interesting our guide is informative, funny and worth the wait. Feeling peckish we head to the famous Temple Bar for a pint and a snack while listening to some live music - Laurie has a Guinness I have an IPA we split a charcuterie plate.
It’s later in the day so we head to the other seat of power Christ Church Cathedral - it is nice and contains an original Magna Carta (the only original outside of England) along with the usual treasury plates and goblets - the Irish don’t go for elaborate on either their castles or their cathedrals; their bars however...
We walk to the Lochs Restaurant situated on the Grand Canal it is a Michelin restaurant - Laurie’s Gnocchi is sublime as is the ceviche starter, my rib eye with duck fat chips is delicious and pairs well with the Alentejo wine; Laurie orders a chocolate Grenache. We are both exhausted and can barely stay awake in the taxi ride back to our hotel, it is 8:30 pm.Read more