Apple, Bram Stoker, Rick discussed on Rick Steves Britain & Ireland Audio Tours
Walking to mention house keep walking down the busy street that borders saint stephen's green. We're going about one hundred yards to the first corner. Notice that the street has a tramline. That's proved to be a very popular way to get around in this increasingly urban environment. Dublin is far and away. Ireland's biggest city. As i mentioned there are five hundred and fifty thousand people in the core and nearly two million in the greater metropolitan area among ireland cities court on the south coast is a distant second with a mirror. Hundred twenty five thousand. Dublin really took off back in nineteen seventy three. That's when ireland joined the european community the precursor to the eu. Dublin became the engine driving the so-called celtic tiger boom years around the turn of the millennium. That's when many american corporations located here for tax purposes today dublin ireland's silicon valley or silicon bog as they call it. It's the european base for big tech companies like apple facebook microsoft and google. When you reach the i intersection. Turn left on dawson street. On dust and street you get a sense of how nicely modern dublin dovetails with traditional irish ways. for instance. look on the left at number twenty five. It's pub a very skinny pub sometimes called the tiniest pub in dublin. As we'll see on this walk this is just one of many pubs in dublin offering a slice of traditional intimacy in an increasingly urban landscape. And just a few steps further up at number twenty. Seven is the celtic whiskey shop. Yes in recent years. Ireland has become a huge provider of whiskey to the world. Exporting even more than scotland to find out why and maybe score a free sample in or a better plan is. Let's keep going ahead on. Your right is a big old white building. Let's stop and check it out from this side of the street. This is called mansion house. It was built in seventeen ten and even today two centuries later it still the official residence of dublin's mayor these days. The position of lord mayor is mostly ceremonial. It's another reminder of how gracefully older traditions continue in this. Modern city mentioned house is a classic example of what's called the georgian style. It has a triangular peppermint over the entrance giving it a classic greek temple. Look there's a balustrade across the roof in another at the base the windows and doors give the facade perfectly symmetrical look. This is just the first of many georgian style buildings will see on our walk. George was the prevailing style. During dublin's golden age in the seventeen. Hundreds mentioned house also played a key role in ireland's modern struggle for independence after that nineteen sixteen easter rising. This was where a rogue irish parliament met in defiance of british rule. Kind of like. When america's continental congress signed the declaration of independence at independence hall in philadelphia. Yes that act of defiance was what kicked off the irish war of independence in nineteen nineteen that eventually made ireland free of british rule. Let's move on. Keep walking up dawson street and other half block to the big gray church of saint ann's on the right. Dublin has always been a breeding ground for new ideas. it's produced some of the greatest writers and thinkers in the english language. There's oscar wilde playwright and bram stoker wrote dracula. That's an oddly. Specific pair of names to single out. That's because of the church of saint hans. Oscar wilde was baptized here. And it's where bram stoker got married And one more random fact bram oscar were good friends and bram married the same woman that oscar had once dated small world in dublin. At the church turn left onto an street. South keep walking straight for two blocks and street has a pleasant row of small shops boutiques and restaurants. This kind of small-scale. Energetic commerce is typical of ireland shopowners are helpful and service comes wrapped in a small town. Smile ireland's workforces is young and well educated. In fact about thirty five percent of the population is under twenty. Five years old. They feel jobs in high tech pharmaceuticals and many opt for small enterprises. Like these and after work is done. Where does everyone go the pub ahead on the right. You're approaching the neighborhood's watering hole. John key host. Let's pause here for a second. There's nothing particularly special about this pub but like so many other pubs in dublin. It's much older and more atmospheric than almost anything you'd find in the states. This place has been serving the neighborhood at this location for more than a century. Pubs are basic part of the irish social scene. And whether you're a teetotaler or a beer guzzler they should be part of your travel here. The word hub is short for public house. It's like an extended living room smart. Travelers use pubs to eat. Drink watch the latest sporting events and make new friends and as a wise irishman once said it never rains in a pub and does another wise irishman said in a pub. Your visitor on the first night and a regular on the next since two thousand four all pubs in ireland are non smoking here at key. Hose may see customers spilling into the street with their cigarettes and beloved pints in hand. Technically it's illegal to drink on the street but because it's so common it's rarely enforced. Let's keep going down and street past the pub. The irish take great pride in their beer. The average irishman spend about five dollars a day on alcohol. If you ask for a pint in dublin you'll get a guinness. That's the dark brown stout style beer. That was born right here in dublin. It's still brewed here. About a mile to the west while loyal dubliners like their guinness ireland's other stout murphy's is the local favourite in the south. You'll have to try them both to pick your favorite twist. My arm neighborhood pubs are like landmarks in the dublin landscape instead of telling someone. Hey meet me on ams street. you're more likely be here. Meet me at key. Hose by now. You should be reaching the intersection with grafton street where we'll be turning right but i stop when you reach the intersection and enjoy the scene. Rick and i will take you from there on the next track. Grafton street thin lizzy beauties cafe and saint theresa's church. Just stand here in this pleasant pedestrianised street and appreciate where you are. Grafton street is a constant parade of shoppers. Tourists businessmen moms with strollers all enjoying a walk down this row of shops grafton street most desirable retail address it's home to both glitzy. International stores and trendy one of a kind irish boutiques bustling atmosphere. Here is a testament to how once quaint dublin has now gone global. We'll stroll the boulevard in a moment but first let's check.