10 million citizens left Ireland. Here’s why you should visit

10 million citizens left Ireland.  Here's why you should visit
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(CNN) – With St. Patrick’s Day is a global phenomenon, and Irish taverns found everywhere from Peru to Lanzarote can make it easy to think you have an Irish feel without visiting, especially if you are one of the 70 million people in the world who can claim Irish heritage.

However, you have to visit this small island country to truly feel its modern energy, and most people start traveling the streets of Dublin.

It is a compact, easy-to-walk capital city, with its low skyline and man-made Georgian granite monuments.

From Phoenix Park in the west and Kilmainham Gaol in the city center, you can follow the Liffey River, Guinness World Records, St. Patrick’s Cathedral and Dublin Castle to the east, to the newly renovated Docklands.

Standing on Butt Bridge, you can see the old and the new: the traditional Dublin, represented by the neoclassical Private House, and the sweeping of new financial towers and cranes beyond it, show that it has grown even bigger.

Aerial view of the Rosie Hackett Bridge on the Liffey River in Dublin City.  Distribution of the Tourism Council

The Liffey River flows through the center of Dublin.

Courtesy Gareth McCormack

The best in Europe

Custom House is located in Quay, one of the newest sights of the city: The EPIC Irish Immigration MuseumWinner of Europe’s Leading Tourist Attraction Award by the World Travel Awards for the last three years in a row.

Created by a team that won the same award as the Belfast Museum’s Titanic Museum, it tells the stories of nearly 10 million people who have emigrated from Ireland for centuries, from hunger to economic necessity, from conflict to religious persecution.

They traveled to England, the United States, Australia, and other lands, built railroads, and farmed along the border.

They brought their culture with them, told fairy tale ambassadors in their new nations, and created a new Irish mythology abroad. They and their descendants are a diaspora that museums like EPIC want to attract, and The Gathering, an Irish tourism initiative in 2013, was dedicated to this audience.

Tearful farewells and long-awaited returns have become part of the national identity, and its airport arrival area has been filled with billboards dedicated to longing for the homeland, Brennan bread and Taito crisps.

As then-President Mary Robinson said in 1996, “this is a great legend and belonging […] has become one of the treasures of our society with a certain historical irony. “He made the Irish a nation of appearance, is strictly pro-Europeanand perhaps this legacy makes it one of the challenges the most generous peoples of the world when it comes to charitable donations.

music and dance

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Cobblestone in Smithfield is the city’s best venue for live traditional music.


The best known of Ireland’s cultural exports is, of course, the tavern, but in Ireland, which has suffered from a pandemic, many have been forced to close permanently.

CNN The Cobblestone, a northern Dublin organization known for its live traditional music cool battle allows it to survive.

Thomas Mulligan, whose father Tom ran the Smithfield pub for 30 years, said: “Believe it or not, this is the capital of the country, in fact, there is not much place where you can go and deal with this aspect of our culture on a daily basis.” before and turned it into today’s live music center.

The revival of Irish traditional music became a major trend in the 1960s, which this year marked the 100th anniversary of its independence and became a symbol of the new national pride of this still young nation.

Tom Mulligan spoke recently Irish History Podcast About the global influences on traditional Irish music and dance from Africa, Spain, America and beyond. “Ireland, of course, borrowed because it was part of the British Empire and mainland Europe, it borrowed travel,” he said.

From Danny Boy (written in English) to The Fields of Afhenry, Ireland’s most popular folk songs were exile and longing tales, while the now-famous “He Passed the Exhibition” was just a lost classic. After being rediscovered in America, it became popular again in Ireland.

Similarly, country music is so popular in Ireland that it has its own sub-genre: Country ‘n’ Irish. Riverdance was also a Chicago-born Irish-American global phenomenon.

Literary tradition

Modernity and transformation have changed a lot here, but the parts of Dublin’s life and the institutions in which it grew and still remain have not changed.

Founded in 1592, Trinity College is the oldest surviving university in Ireland. The Brian Pipe Harp, one of Ireland’s oldest and most iconic landmarks, is housed in the magnificent Long Room Library at Trinity College and is home to the ninth-century Bible manuscript The Book of Kells.

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Richard Quest meets James Joyce’s imitator John Chevlin (left) at Bewley’s Cafe.

Ireland is proud of its storytelling tradition: with the exception of one of the four Nobel Prize winners – WB Yeats, GB Shaw, Samuel Beckett and Seamus Heaney – all were born on the shores of the Ocean.

Two of Ireland’s most famous writers, Oscar Wilde and James Joyce, were in Paris and in exile at the time, outraged by insults to what was then considered public dignity.

Francis Bacon, a leading Anglo-Irish artist of modern art, left Ireland for England as a teenager: Although he was an outspoken homosexual at a time when both islands were illegal, he was not easily accepted in his country’s society. homeland for most of his life.

But as with Wilde and Joyce, he was embraced after his death. The entire contents of the artist’s studio were taken by Dublin’s Hugh Lane Gallery, where they were reassembled as they were when Bacon created the legendary works of art. This is one of the best kept secrets of the city, and best of all, access is free.

sea ​​swimming

Although Joyce spent most of his life in mainland Europe, his greatest work is a love letter to his hometown of Ulysses, a modernist classic celebrating its 100th anniversary this year, and an odyssey following a man named Leopold Bloom. , A day trip around Dublin.

The opening scenes of the novel take place at the James Joyce Museum and the Martello Tower on the waterfront south of Sandycove, a place of worship for fans who celebrate Bloomsday on June 16 each year.

The area is a popular destination for lawns, and swimming in the sea is becoming increasingly popular after Covid.

Even celebrities attend. While bathing in the nearby Vico Baths this week, Harry Styles was spotted following in the footsteps of Matt Damon, who appeared there in 2020 after being locked up in the area with his family.

CNN joined the local band The Ripple Effect to swim early in the morning on Cape 40 Foot.

Member Katie Clark explains: “During the locking process, many people could not meet indoors, so many people began to communicate outside.” “It was just a wonderful place to come and rediscover the sea.”

As for the band’s name, fellow member Mandy Lacey says: “Irish people love to help people! It’s in our nature. I think The Ripple Effect is something Irish. It’s part of our history. Whether we go through hard times or good times.” everyone is there to really, really support each other. ”

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Swimming in the sea is becoming increasingly popular.

The rest, those who left

Earlier this year, British filmmaker Kenneth Branagh won an Oscar for his semi-autobiographical film Belfast about his Northern Irish childhood before the 30-year conflict known as the “Challenges” that forced his family to flee to England. It ends with a dedication: “For the rest. For the departed. And for all the lost.”

In the past, vacations meant permanent exile, but now it is a door that opens on both sides.

Many Irish immigrants returned home with their young families for new lives, reassuring their priorities after the pandemic. As always, returnees bring with them the experience and knowledge they have gained abroad, which can help their countries develop.

In 2015, Ireland became the first country in the world to legalize same-sex marriage by popular vote, and it is now far from being the homogeneous Catholic country of the popular imagination. These immigrant people have also become richer in recent decades through internal migration. There is a new faith in this modern, increasingly multicultural Ireland.

Ireland has changed a lot since it was adopted as the “Celtic Tiger” at the beginning of this century. The next decade or so saw great economic growth and great optimism. Now, like the rest of the world, Ireland is looking for a post-pandemic goal.

But history has shown that this small, young nation can do this first by looking at each other and then at the world.

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