Things To Do In Dublin City
Visitors should see Dublin accommodation
By Ronan Menton
Continuing on from my first article about the 10 things you must see while visiting in Dublin, I am going to cover the second half of things you must see. Included in this list are St Stephen’s Green, Dublin Castle, the General Post Office and Kilmainham Gaol.
St Stephen’s Green
Situated on the south side of the Liffey and at the top of Grafton Street, St Stephen’s Green is a rectangular park (550m x 450m) which gives welcome relief from the hustle and bustle of city life. Before 1663 the park was a common ground, but in 1664 the park area was enclosed and the land around the park was sold for development. During the 18th Century the area that serves as St Stephen’s Green today was used for public hangings.
Today the park features include an arched entrance from Grafton Street. This Archway is knows as Fusilier’s Arch and was named after the Fusiliers who lost their life during the Second Boer War. The park also features a pond and several gardens.
Dublin Castle was home to British rule in Ireland for 800 years, a rule which ended in 1922. Much of the current building dates from the 18th Century although a castle has stood on this site since the 12th Century. Famously Michael Collins infiltrated the castle during the British rule by simply walking in through the front door.
Today the castle is used in mainly a political context and has been used many times for the inauguration of new Presidents of Ireland. The castle is also used for political engagements, and was used extensively during the Irish Presidency of the EU.
General Post Office (GPO)
The GPO as it is referred to by Irish people is the centre piece of O’Connell Street. Built in 1814 the building today serves as the headquarters of An Post, the Irish postal service. The GPO was cemented into Irish history during the Easter Rising of 1916 when it was occupied by Irish rebels and the Proclamation of Independence Read out to the Irish People.
If you look closely when you visit O’Connell Street, you can still see plenty of bullet holes in the walls and statues which date back to this conflict.
Kilmainham Gaol was built in 1796, and since then has played an integral part in Irish history and the struggle against British Rule in Ireland. Many of the rebels who rose up against British Rule in Ireland ended up here, including rebels from the United Irish Rebellion of 1796, the Emmet Rebellion of 1803, the Young Ireland Rebellion of 1848, the Fenian Rebellion of 1867 and the Easter Rising of 1916.
It was after the Easter Rising of 1916 that the Gaol served its most important role in the history of Ireland when some of the rebels were executed by the British Army. Reaction to the rebellion in Ireland to that point had been mixed, but the execution of Irish people caused uproar and in the end proved to be a major catalyst that brought about the end of British Rule in Ireland.
The Gaol has been fully restored, and visitors can visit the cells that previously were used to hold the rebels and stand on the spot the stood while they were executed. You can still see marks on the walls dating back to this time. Truly an extraordinary experience.