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A Hundred Thousand Welcomes!
by Bridget Haggerty

On Garinish Island in Bantry Bay, Co. Cork, there is a lush, semi-tropical garden called Ilnacullen. It's where my husband took this photo. Quite by chance, it became the cover for my book, The Traditional Irish Wedding. That was five years ago. Little did we know then, that what started as a ten-day surprise trip to Ireland for my birthday, would also be the beginning of a journey back through time. A two-thousand year voyage through history, on a quest to learn as much as we can about Ireland's culture.

From the legend of the Claddagh Ring to "drowning the shamrock" on St Patrick's Day, the Irish have been blessed - and sometimes cursed - with more traditions, customs and supersitions than there are lobsters in Galway Bay. As the old quip goes: "indeed, isn't the Irish sea itself red with them?"

Humor is as much a part of Ireland's heritage as the wit, charm and warmth of her people. And it's these characteristics that show up time after time in the many articles we've written.

In a series called Emblems of Ireland, we explore the significance of the harp and the shamrock. In another one called A Taste of Ireland, we share what we know about Irish Coffee, Soda Bread, Colcannon and other national dishes. We've also put together an on-going series that focuses on important days in the Irish Calendar - from New Year's to Christmas. And, for readers who may be contemplating a trip to the Ould Sod, we're ready to offer a helping hand with a series called Driving In Ireland. We may change the title to "See that road over there? Well, don't take that one!"

Our hope is that you'll find every article entertaining and informative. But most important of all - we want you to have as much fun as we're having!

 

Sun, Jul 20, 2014


Ireland's oldest city
Waterford

Situated in south eastern Ireland on the river Suir - pronounced Shure - Waterford was founded by the Vikings in 914. It was taken over by the Anglo-Norman invaders of the 12th century and was one of the most important Old English centres in medieval Ireland. Today, Waterford is world famous for its intricately cut crystal which was made in the city from 1783 until early 2009. Waterford is also known for being the home of Ryanair which began operations in the city with a 14-seat turboprop aircraft flying between Waterford and Gatwick Airport. Other claims to fame include being the first place where the the tri-colour flag of the Irish Republic was flown; it's also where the the modern bacon curing process was invented and it's where Ships Biscuits were first manufactured by Jacobs - they're better known nowadays as cream crackers!
Source: Wikipedia
Image: Collage: Coleman Huge2

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Visit 30 of Ireland's most beautiful gardens. Includes a stunning collection of 200 full-color photos.
Click here for Gardens of Ireland


 

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