Dublin - Amsterdam (Trinity College and the last pints of Guinness)
Dublin Travel Blog› entry 5 of 5 › view all entries
As planned, we started the day early because we needed to be heading for the airport around . Turns out we'd got up a bit too early since Lemon, where we wanted to have a tasty pancake breakfast, was still closed. We killed the remaining time until they opened with a cup of coffee at Starbucks a couple of doors down. Lemon's pancakes were the perfect start of the day before we headed for
Trinity was established by Queen Elizabeth I in 1592 to stop the emigration of bright young students from
We took the tour with Joseph, a teacher at Trinity who had a lovely sense of very cynical humor. This is exactly what you need to make a story filled with history and numerous facts fun, something we've noticed a lot of tour guides in
The Old Library houses The Book of Kells, one of the oldest known books this illustrated manuscript is believed to have originated around 800 AD in a monastery on the remote island
The book contains the four gospels of the New Testament in its 680 pages and is especially remarkable because of the complex illustrations. Visiting the Book is a bit disenchanting really because the full book has been rebound into 4 volumes and only two pages of one volume are openly on display (hence the often used ‘Page of Kells’ reference). Worse however is that there's no efficient way of trafficking people along the book. So even though the number of people in the darkened room is limited those folks inside flock around the display and you'll have a hard time catching a close up glimpse because there will always we queue-jumpers, squeezers and people giving the decoding of the Latin text a go, taking ages to move on.
What lay beyond the Book of Kells was actually much more impressive. The upper two levels of the Old Library contain a large open hall, the Long Room, no less than 65 meters across. This place has a magical atmosphere and beneath the barrel-shaped roof row upon row of bookcases line the walls, containing 20.000 of the library's oldest books and manuscripts. It even has some copies of pages from the Book of Kells that could be viewed much easier than the actual thing.
This concluded our tour along the main sights of Dublin in the past four days. Though we could have easily stayed another couple of days and spent it sightseeing and drinking pints, it unfortunately was about time to go home. We spent our last two hours shopping for DVDs and books at Grafton Street, Dublin's main shopping area and grabbed a sandwich, washing it down with our last pint of Guinness, in the Temple Bar area. Then it was and time to head for the airport, which we did by taxi, since they didn't want any more bus trouble this time. ;-)
At the airport we got our final Guinness (again).
At a quarter past five we were on our way back to
All in all,