Dunleary Dún Laoghaire
Dún Laoghaire ("Leary's Fort": pronounced Dunleary) lies at the south end of the wide sweep of Dublin Bay, below the northeasterly foothills of the Wicklow Mountains. At the beginning of the 19th C. it was still a small fishing village.Today Dún Laoghaire is an attractive suburb of Dublin, a seaside resort and residential town much favored by retired people, and an important port, terminus of the mail boat and car ferry services from Holyhead (Anglesey). It is also Ireland's great yachting center, with the headquarters of three major yacht clubs.
Dún Laoghaire Harbor
National Maritime Museum
In the town of Dún Laoghaire is the fine National Maritime Museum, housed in a former church, with some 500 exhibits. The emphasis is on Irish shipping, from the simple curraghs of western Ireland to the most modern vessels of our own time.
James Joyce Tower
A minor road leads from the Dún Laoghaire harbor, skirting the bathing beach, to Joyce's Tower, situated on a rocky promontory with an extensive view over Dublin Bay. It was one of the Martello towers built during the Napoleonic Wars to watch for possible invasion attempts. In 1904 James Joyce lived for some time in the tower as guest of Oliver St John Gogarty, and he describes it in "Ulysses." It now houses a museum containing original manuscripts and rare editions of Joyce's works as well as personal mementos.
The surroundings of Dún Laoghaire have many interesting sights.
Along the coast to the north of Dún Laoghaire, extending into the suburbs of Dublin, are the residential districts of Monkstown and Blackrock. Monkstown has a 19th C. church with towers like chess pawns.
Blackrock has very popular seawater swimming baths.
To the south of Monkstown and Blackrock, and north of Dublin, now joined onto Dún Laoghaire, is the ancient little town of Dalkey. In Main Street stand two relics of the town's medieval defenses, Archbold's Castle (16th C.: National Monument) and another castle which is now the town hall.
Just off the coast of Dalkey lies a small islet, Dalkey Island, with an old church (National Monument) and a Martello tower. From Sorrento Terrace and Sorrento Park, on the town's south beach, there are magnificent views. The old granite quarries are a good practice ground for rock climbers.
To the south of Sorrento Point stretches Killiney Bay, with the seaside resort of Killiney. The slopes of the hills are studded with villas of different periods set in gardens, while beyond the railroad line, which here follows the coast, the beach is rocky. From Killiney Hill, topped by an obelisk of 1741, there are superb views of the hills and the sea.
To the west of Killiney, just off the R117, is the village of Kilternan. On a nearby hill can be seen the impressive Kilternan Dolmen (ca. 2000 B.C.: National Monument), with a capstone 22ft/7m long, 13.5ft/4m across and 6ft/2m thick, borne on 10 orthostats.