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Ireland, May 2011

10th May 2011

Tony, Tatiana in front of a statue of King William III (William of Orange) outside Carrickfergus Castle.Tony, Tatiana in front of a statue of King William III (William of Orange) outside Carrickfergus Castle. This is the place where King William III of England (1689-1702) first landed in Ireland (June 1690).

View of Carrickfergus Castle.View of Carrickfergus Castle. A Norman castle in the town of Carrickfergus, County Antrim, on Belfast Lough, Northern Ireland. Built in 1177, it is now a tourist attraction and is in good condition.

Coastline between the towns of Carrickfergus and Bushmills, County Antrim.View of some of Northern Ireland’s east coastline between the towns of Carrickfergus and Bushmills, County Antrim. Taken from a coach during the Giant’s Causeway tour.

View of the Antrim Road and the Irish Sea in the distance, taken from the coach.View of the Antrim Road and the Irish Sea in the distance, taken from the coach.

Tony and Tatiana in front of a stack of whisky barrels outside Old Bushmills Distillery in the town of Bushmills.Are they drunk? Tony and Tatiana in front of a stack of whisky barrels outside Old Bushmills Distillery in the town of Bushmills.

Looking into a field with horses, cliffs and the Irish Sea beyond, near Dunluce Castle, East Antrim.Looking into a field with horses, cliffs and the Irish Sea beyond, near Dunluce Castle, East Antrim.

Tony, Tatiana at Giant's Causeway - the distinct mostly hexagonal basalt rock columns behind.Tony, Tatiana at Giant’s Causeway – the distinct mostly hexagonal basalt rock columns behind.

Giant’s Causeway is an area consisting of about 40,000 interlocking basalt columns, the result of an ancient volcanic eruption. It is located on Northern Ireland’s north-east coast in County Antrim, about 3 miles, 4.8 km north-east of Bushmills town. It was made a UNESCO World Heritage site (1986) and is owned by the National Trust. It is the most visited national attraction in Northern Ireland.

Wide footpath immediately above a rocky beach at Causeway Coast, solidified lava constructed cliffs in the distance.Wide footpath immediately above a rocky beach at Causeway Coast, solidified lava constructed cliffs in the distance.

View of the rocky beach looking into Giant's Causeway Bay.View of the rocky beach looking into Giant’s Causeway Bay.

Causeway rock wall composed of solidified lava containing the distinctive basalt columns.Causeway rock wall composed of solidified lava containing the distinctive basalt columns. The tallest of the columns are about 39 feet, 12 metres high.

Tony, Tatiana touching the distinct rock columns of the Giant's Causeway.Tony, Tatiana touching the distinct rock columns of the Giant’s Causeway. The tops of the columns form stepping stones that leave from the cliff foot and disappear under the sea.

Another picture of Tony and Tatiana touching the rock columns.Another picture of Tony and Tatiana touching the rock columns.

Looking into Giant's Causeway Bay from the cliff top.Looking into Giant’s Causeway Bay from the cliff top.

Tony, Tatiana walking along a cliff-top footpath, heading towards Carrick-a-Rede Rope Bridge.Tony, Tatiana walking along a cliff-top footpath, heading towards Carrick-a-Rede Rope Bridge.

Another view of the Irish Sea from the cliff top.Another view of the Irish Sea from the cliff top.

Looking down at tiny Carrick Island protruding into the Irish Sea.Looking down at tiny Carrick Island protruding into the Irish Sea.

Tony, Tatiana by the 'Welcome to Carrick-a-Rede Rope Bridge' sign. Carrick-a-Rede Rope Bridge is a 30 foot, 20 metre long suspension bridge located near Ballintoy, County Antrim.Tony, Tatiana by the ‘Welcome to Carrick-a-Rede Rope Bridge’ sign. Carrick-a-Rede Rope Bridge is a 30 foot, 20 metre long suspension bridge located near Ballintoy, County Antrim. It connects the mainland to the tiny Carrick Island.

Tony, Tatiana descending metal steps to the rope bridge.Tony, Tatiana descending metal steps to the rope bridge. This is a National Trust property, there is a fee to cross the bridge!

Tony, Tatiana traversing the rope suspension bridge.Tony, Tatiana traversing the rope suspension bridge.

View of a narrow channel of water 90 feet (30 metres) beneath the suspension bridge with cliffs on either side.View of a narrow channel of water 90 feet (30 metres) beneath the suspension bridge with cliffs on either side.

Tony, Tatiana on the rope suspension bridge.Tony, Tatiana on the rope bridge.

Tony and Tatiana on Carrick Island.Tony and Tatiana on Carrick Island.

Tony, Tatiana crossing back over the bridge.Tony, Tatiana crossing back over the bridge.

Belfast

Tatiana stood between two stone columns, perhaps once used as gateposts. Near Queens University, Belfast. Taken during an evening walk around Belfast.Tatiana stood between two stone columns, perhaps once used as gateposts. Near Queens University, Belfast. Taken during an evening walk around Belfast.

11th May 2011
Belfast is the capital of Northern Ireland, part of the United Kingdom. Photos taken during a black taxi tour of the trouble areas of West Belfast and notable landmarks of the city. The first set of photos taken in the Catholic (Nationalist) side of the troubles area.

The taxi in front of an 18 foot, 5 metre high steel gate atopped with sharp spikes and barb wire. One of the barrier gates, part of the Peace Line.The taxi in front of an 18 foot, 5 metre high steel gate atopped with sharp spikes and barbed wire. One of the barrier gates, part of the Peace Line. Located on the Catholic occupied Springfield Road, West Belfast.

The Falls Road with part of the peace wall containing murals of billboard style adverts and political slogans.The Falls Road with part of the peace wall containing murals of billboard style adverts and political slogans. Located in West Belfast. This is part of the Peace lines or peace walls, a series of separation barriers that separate Catholic (Nationalist) and Protestant (Unionist) neighbourhoods, they are located at urban interface areas. They were constructed to minimise inter-communal violence between Catholics and Protestants. The first barriers were built after the outbreak of the 1969 Northern Ireland riots.

Peace wall murals.Peace wall murals.

More peace wall murals.More peace wall murals.

Tony, Tatiana outside the Sinn Féin headquarters, the Falls Road, West Belfast.Tony, Tatiana outside the Sinn Féin headquarters, the Falls Road, West Belfast.

Bobby Sands Mural on the side of a building, Falls Road, West Belfast.Bobby Sands Mural on the side of a building, Falls Road, West Belfast. “St. James support the hunger strikers.”

Bobby Sands (9 March 1954 to 5 May 1981) was an Irish volunteer of the Provisional Irish Republican Army and member of the United Kingdom Parliament who died on hunger strike in the Maze Prison in Northern Ireland. Sands was the leader of the 1981 hunger strike in which Irish Republican prisoners protested against the removal of special category status.

Tony, Tatiana at the Clonard Martyrs Memorial Garden, dedicated, according to the plaque, to 'Civilians murdered by Loyalist and British forces during the course of the conflict'.Tony, Tatiana at the Clonard Martyrs Memorial Garden, dedicated, according to the plaque, to ‘Civilians murdered by Loyalist and British forces during the course of the conflict’. Located in Bombay Street, Clonard, West Belfast, erected 20th August 2000.

Black iron gates with black and red iron phoenix, entrance gate of the memorial.Black iron gates with black and red iron phoenix, entrance gate of the memorial.

Tony, Tatiana walking along a road by part of the high dividing wall covered by graffiti. This marks the beginning of the Protestant part of west Belfast.Tony, Tatiana walking along a road by part of the high dividing wall covered by graffiti. This marks the beginning of the Protestant part of west Belfast.

Side of a house with a mural depicting King William III crossing the Boyne with the date 1690.Side of a house with a mural depicting King William III crossing the Boyne with the date 1690. This is the year he landed in Ireland and defeated King James II. Apparently, it was painted in December 2002. It’s located on Blythe Street/Sandy Row.

Tony and Tatiana. Behind another side of a house containing Oliver Cromwell and soldiers on horseback entering Ireland in 1649. Tony and Tatiana. Behind another side of a house containing Oliver Cromwell and soldiers on horseback entering Ireland in 1649. Located on Shankill Parade, West Belfast.

Belfast landmarks

Tony, Tatiana by a cannon at Belfast Castle, a doorway is in the background.Tony, Tatiana by a cannon at Belfast Castle, a doorway is in the background.

Another view of Belfast Castle.Another view of Belfast Castle.

Belfast Castle is set on Cavehill Country Park, Belfast, in a prominent position, 400 feet, 120 metres above sea level. The building that stands today was built 1811-70 by the third Marquess of Donegal.

Tony, Tatiana outside the main entrance to St. Anne's Cathedral. Located in Belfast city centre.Tony, Tatiana outside the main entrance to St. Anne’s Cathedral. Located in Belfast city centre.

St. Anne’s Cathedral, also called Belfast Cathedral, was built 1899-1904 and is located on Donegal Street in the centre of Belfast. The 40-metre stainless steel spire was installed on the roof in April 2007. Named the “Spire of hope” it is illuminated each night and is visible for long distances.

Outside St. Anne's Cathedral with a view of the 40-metre stainless steel spire.Outside St. Anne’s Cathedral with a view of the 40-metre stainless steel spire.

On High Street, the Albert Memorial clock in the middle distance.On High Street, the Albert Memorial clock in the middle distance. The Albert Memorial Clock is 113 foot tall and is situated at Queens Square, Belfast. It was completed in 1869 and is one of Belfast’s best known landmarks. The clock is a memorial to Prince Albert, husband to Queen Victoria of Great Britain.

Tony, Tatiana stood by railings, behind is the Thompson Dry Dock from which the famous liner, RMS Titanic of White Star, constructed by Harland and Wolff, was built and launched.Tony, Tatiana stood by railings, behind is the Thompson Dry Dock from which the famous liner, RMS Titanic of White Star, constructed by Harland and Wolff, was built and launched. The dry dock provides a vivid representation of the size and scale of RMS Titanic.

Another view of Thompson Dry Dock.Another view of Thompson Dry Dock.

Tony and Tatiana by the 'Big fish' - a large sculpture located at Donegal Quay.Tony and Tatiana by the ‘Big fish’ – a large sculpture located at Donegal Quay. The ‘Big Fish’ is a printed ceramic mosaic sculpture. It was constructed by John Kindess, is 30 feet, 10 metres long and was erected in 1999. The printed mosaics show the history of Belfast.

Tony, Tatiana in front of Belfast City Hall.Tony, Tatiana in front of Belfast City Hall. This is the current home of Belfast City Council. Constructed between 1898 and 1906 in a baroque revival architectural style. It is located in Donegall Square and faces north.

12th May 2011

Dublin

Dublin is the capital and largest city of the Republic of Ireland.

Doorway of St Patrick's Cathedral.Doorway of St Patrick’s Cathedral.

St Patrick’s Cathedral, founded 1191 and located at 8 St Patrick’s close, is designated the National Cathedral of the Church of Ireland. However, this cathedral is not the seat of the bishop, that honour lies with Christ Church Cathedral, founded 1038, Dublin’s oldest building.

Irish Writer and priest Jonathan Swift (30 November 1667 to 19 October 1745) was Dean from 1713-45. St Patrick’s Cathedral became Anglican after 1537 during the Reformation period, hence the Union Jack flags.

Close-up of the cathedral doorway.Close-up of the cathedral doorway.

A bust of Jonathan Swift inside the cathedral.A bust of Jonathan Swift inside the cathedral.

Flags inside the cathedral, including several Union Jacks.Flags inside the cathedral, including several Union Jacks.

More flags inside St Patrick's Cathedral.More flags inside the cathedral.

Tony and Tatiana inside the cathedral.Tony and Tatiana inside the cathedral.

Two old grave stones inside the cathedral, possibly Jonathan Swift's and one of his female friends!Two old grave stones inside the cathedral, possibly Jonathan Swift’s and one of his female friends!

Statue of Sir Benjamin Lee Guinness in the grounds of St Patrick's Cathedral.Statue of Sir Benjamin Lee Guinness in the grounds of St Patrick’s Cathedral. Benjamin Lee Guinness, 1st Baronet (1798-1868) was an Irish Brewer and Philanthropist.

Tatiana and a view of the O'Connell Bridge over the River Liffey from the south end of the bridge.Tatiana and a view of the O’Connell Bridge over the River Liffey from the south end of the bridge.

The River Liffey, which means life, flows through the centre of Dublin, running roughly from west to east before finally entering the Irish Sea at Dublin Bay, The river rises at Mt Kippure in County Wicklow.

The O’Connell Bridge, formerly Carlisle Bridge, is a road bridge spanning the River Liffey and a major crossing point for pedestrians and traffic. It is 45 metres long, 50 metres wide and connects O’Connell Street, Dublin’s main thoroughfare with D’Olier Street, Westmoreland Street and the south quays. It was constructed 1791-94 and designed by James Gandon, architect of many of Dublin’s structures and buildings during the late 18th and early 19th centuries.

The O'Connell Monument, a memorial to Daniel O'Connell by sculptor John Henry Foley, located at the south entrance of O'Connell Street, facing O'Connell Bridge.The O’Connell Monument, a memorial to Daniel O’Connell by sculptor John Henry Foley, located at the south entrance of O’Connell Street, facing O’Connell Bridge. It was unveiled in 1882.

Daniel O’Connell (6 August 1775 to 15 May 1847), often referred to as the Liberator or Emancipator, was an Irish political leader in the first half of the 19th century. O’Connell Street, named in honour of Daniel O’Connell, is Dublin’s main thoroughfare. It runs roughly north to south through the heart of the city and has a gentle descent in the same direction. It measures 1500 feet, 500 metres in length and is 160 feet, 49 metres wide at its south end and 150 feet, 46 metres wide at the north end. It was known as ‘Sackville’ Street until 1924.

Large statue of William Smith O'Brian, designed by Thomas Farrell, located on the central median in O'Connell Street.Large statue of William Smith O’Brian, designed by Thomas Farrell, located on the central median in O’Connell Street. Originally erected in 1870 on an island at the O’Connell Bridge entrance to D’Olier Street, it was moved to O’Connell Street in 1929. William Smith O’Brian (17 October 1803 to 18 June 1864) was an Irish Nationalist and Member of Parliament (MP) and leader of the Young Ireland Movement.

An expressive bronze statue of Big-Jim Larkin atop a granite plinth on the central median in O'Connell Street.An expressive bronze statue of Big-Jim Larkin by Oisin Kelly atop a granite plinth. The monument located on the central median in O’Connell Street was unveiled in 1980. James Larkin (21 January 1874 to 30 January 1947) was an Irish Trade union leader and social activist in Ireland. He was born in Liverpool, England to Irish parents.

Tony, Tatiana in front of the Jim Larkin Statue, O'Connell Street.Tony, Tatiana in front of the Jim Larkin Statue, O’Connell Street.

Tony, Tatiana at the foot of the 397.6 foot (120.2 metre) high stainless steel Spire of Dublin Sculpture.Tony, Tatiana at the foot of the 397.6 foot (120.2 metre) high stainless steel Spire of Dublin Sculpture, officially titled the ‘Monument of Light’, erected 2003 and located on a civic plaza space in the centre of O’Connell Street, it is traversed by the street’s two roadways. It has several local nick-names: ‘the stiletto in the Ghetto’, ‘the spike’, ‘the stiffy at the Liffey’, ‘the erection at the intersection’ and ‘the rod to God’.

The imposing 1818 General Post Office (GPO) dominating the centre of O'Connell Street.The hexastyle Ionic Portico of the imposing 1818 General Post Office (GPO) with its six fluted Ionic columns, dominating the centre of O’Connell Street, it contains bullet holes from the 1916 Easter Rising, an unsuccessful insurrection by Irish republicans who wanted an end to British home rule.

Tatiana leaning against one of the original columns, a bullet hole is just above her head, photo taken by Tony.Tatiana leaning against one of the original columns, a bullet hole is just above her head, photo taken by Tony.

Charles Stuart Parnell Monument.Charles Stuart Parnell Monument, by Irish-American sculptor Augustus Saint-Gaudens, located at the very top of O’Connell Street, at the junction of Parnell Street, just south of Parnell Square. The 57-foot high obelisk, made of solid Galway granite was unveiled in 1911. Charles Stuart Parnell (27 June 1846 to 6 October 1891) was an Irish landowner, National political leader and founder and leader of the Irish Parliamentary Party. He is considered one of the important figures in 19th century Ireland and Great Britain.

Tony, Tatiana having afternoon tea in the bar of the Gresham Hotel - biscuits and tea in evidence.Tony, Tatiana having afternoon tea in the bar of the Gresham Hotel – biscuits and tea in evidence.

Gresham Hotel doorway and sign.Gresham Hotel doorway and sign. The hotel is located at 23 Upper O’Connell Street, approximately half way along the east side of the street. It reopened in 1927 after being damaged during the 1916 Easter Rising. It is one of the oldest hotels in Dublin.

Inside a large Irish pub during the evening.Inside a large Irish pub during the evening.

14th May 2011

St Mary’s Pro-Cathedral is a pro-cathedral and is the episcopal seat of the Roman Catholic Archbishop of Dublin. This is the main Roman Catholic church in Dublin since both cathedrals in the city are of Anglican denomination. St Mary’s church was officially given the title of Pro-Cathedral, acting cathedral in 1886. The church, built 1814-1825, has an exterior resembling Greek Revival, while the interior is more Romanesque. It is located on the corner of Marlborough Street and Cathedral Street, near the north end of O’Connell Street.

Inside St Mary's Pro-Cathedral, pews and tall white Greco-Roman style columns.Inside St Mary’s Pro-Cathedral, pews and tall white Greco-Roman style columns.

Tatiana beside a metal sculpture in the shape of a cross inside the cathedral.Tatiana beside a metal sculpture in the shape of a cross inside the cathedral.

More pews and columns inside the cathedral.More pews and columns inside the cathedral.

Tony, Tatiana in front of the cathedral's main entrance.Tony, Tatiana in front of the cathedral’s main entrance.

View towards railings outside Tyrone House, on Marlborough Street, opposite St Mary's Pro-Cathedral.View towards railings outside Tyrone House, on Marlborough Street, opposite St Mary’s Pro-Cathedral. Tyrone House is a Georgian town house designed by Richard Cassels (1740-45) for Marcos Beresford, Earl of Tyrone.

'Clery and Co Ltd' sign. Clery's is a long established department store on the east side of O'Connell Street, close to the southern end.‘Clery and Co Ltd’ sign. Clery’s is a long established department store on the east side of O’Connell Street, close to the southern end. The business was begun in 1883, but the current building dates from 1922. The original building was completely destroyed during the 1916 Easter Rising. It has a 19th century signature stone neoclassical façade.

Tatiana by a statue of world famous, early 20th century Irish novelist and poet James Joyce (2 February 1882 to 13 January 1941).Tatiana by a statue of world famous, early 20th century Irish novelist and poet James Joyce (2 February 1882 to 13 January 1941). Best known for his novel Ulysses (1922), Joyce is depicted walking with a cane in his hand. It is known to the Dublin populous as ‘The prick with the stick’! The statue is on the corner of North Earl Street, where it meets O’Connell Street at the base of the Dublin Spire.

Tony, Tatiana by the statue of James Joyce.Tony, Tatiana by the statue of James Joyce.

Tatiana outside the main gateway and entrance to Trinity College, Dublin's prestigious University.Tatiana outside the main gateway and entrance to Trinity College, Dublin’s prestigious University, founded 1592 by Queen of England and Ireland, Elizabeth I. Address: Fellows Square, Trinity College, University of Dublin. It’s located south of the River Liffey near Pearse Station. Its old library houses the Book of Kells. Originally, this famous educational establishment was for Protestants only, but this restriction was lifted in 1793. However, the Catholic church forbade its youth to attended. This restriction was only completely lifted in the 1970s.

Tony, Tatiana outside the main gateway and entrance to Trinity College.Tony, Tatiana outside the main gateway and entrance to Trinity College.

A large building seen from the gateway, part of Trinity College.A large building seen from the gateway, part of Trinity College.

Tony, Tatiana in front of a statue of Edmond Burke.Tony, Tatiana in front of a statue of Edmond Burke. Edmond Burke (12 January 1729 to 9 July 1797) was an 18th century Irish statesman, author, orator, political theorist and philosopher, who served in the British House of Commons. Located at Trinity College, on College Green.

A small Canova style pyramid made of stone, steel, glass and bronze, a war memorial to the Irish Defence Force.A small Canova style pyramid made of stone, steel, glass and bronze, a war memorial to the Irish Defence Force, designed by Brian King and unveiled November 2008. Located in Merrion Square Park, a peaceful green park in the old Georgian area of the south part of Dublin.

Statue of Oscar Wilde sat on a large granite rock, located inside the north-west gateway of Merrion Square Park.Statue of Oscar Wilde sat on a large granite rock, located inside the north-west gateway of Merrion Square Park, a Georgian square park (1762) on the south side of Dublin, taken in the early evening.

Oscar Wilde (16 October 1854 to 30 November 1900) was a 19th century Irish Writer. He was a known homosexual and despite such notable works as The Picture of Dorian Grey (1890) and The Importance of Being Earnest (1895), he died destitute in Paris, aged only 44. The statue has been nicknamed: ‘the queer with the leer’ or ‘the fag on the crag’.

Upper Merrion Street, view of government buildings.Upper Merrion Street, view of government buildings.

Oversized bronze statue of Molly Malone pushing her flower cart, located at the bottom end of Grafton street by the junction with Nassau Street.Oversized bronze statue of Molly Malone pushing her flower cart, located at the bottom end of Grafton street by the junction with Nassau Street. Designed by Jeanne Rynhart and erected 1988. Molly Malone is a fictitious fishmonger who has inspired many songs and poems. Due to the revealing neckline, she is known by locals as ‘the tart with the cart’, ‘the trollop with the skalops’ or ‘the flirt in the skirt’ – Tony’s favourite!

Inside Doyles pub.Inside Doyles pub with a plaque that reads: “This pub has been granted the James Joyce award for being an authentic Irish pub”. Located on the corner of College Street and D’Olier Street, close to Trinity College and just a short walk from Temple Bar, the centre of Dublin’s nightlife.

15th May 2011

The Dublin Writers Museum, a former Georgian mansion, located at 18 Parnell Square, just north of O’Connell Street, is a compact museum dedicated to over 300 years of the history of Dublin’s literary celebrities, including Joyce, Wilde, Yeats, Shaw and others. The entrance fee is around EUR 7.70 and audio guides are available. Museum open daily, apart from national holidays.

Writer George Bernard Shaw bust and portrait.Writer George Bernard Shaw bust and portrait.

Bust of Oscar Wilde.Bust of Oscar Wilde.

Painted ceiling inside the Gallery of the Writers room on the museum's upper level.Painted ceiling inside the Gallery of the Writers room on the museum’s upper level.

Tatiana inside the Dublin Writers Museum.Tatiana inside the Dublin Writers Museum.

Another bust. Dublin Writers Museum.Another bust. Dublin Writers Museum.

Inside the Dublin Writers Museum.Inside the Dublin Writers Museum.

Outside the entrance to the Dublin Writers Museum.Outside the entrance to the Dublin Writers Museum.

16th May 2011

County Cork

Tony, Tatiana in front of a wall and plaque which reads: 'Three past pupils of this school fought in Dublin during the rising of 1916. Michael Collins, Con O'Donovon, Sean Hurley.' Located in the small town of Clonakilty, West Cork.Tony, Tatiana in front of a wall and plaque which reads: “Three past pupils of this school fought in Dublin during the rising of 1916. Michael Collins, Con O’Donovon, Sean Hurley.” Located in the small town of Clonakilty, West Cork.

Michael Collins, who was leader of the Irish Republican Army and later the Free State Movement, which campaigned for independence from Great Britain (1920-21), lived in Clonakilty and attended the Boys National School.

Tony, Tatiana in front of St Colman's Cathedral, town of Cobh, County Cork.Tony, Tatiana in front of St Colman’s Cathedral, town of Cobh, County Cork.

Tony, Tatiana in a park, Colman's Cathedral is visible, a circular monument behind.Tony, Tatiana in a park, Colman’s Cathedral is visible, a circular monument behind.

Part of the Michael Collins Memorial, a stone block, with a plaque that reads: 'Michael O'Coileain 16-10-1890 to 22-8-1922'.Part of the Michael Collins Memorial, a stone block, with a plaque that reads: ‘Michael O’Coileain 16-10-1890 to 22-8-1922’.

Bust of Michael Collins, part of the same monument.Bust of Michael Collins, part of the same monument.

Michael Collins (16 October 1890 to 22 August 1922) was an Irish Revolutionary Commander, director of intelligence for the Irish Republican Army and, by 1919, President of the Irish Republican Brotherhood. He was arguably responsible for bringing the British to a stalemate in the Irish War of Independence and was one of the main Irish delegates of the Anglo-Irish treaty negotiations between the British and Irish in 1921. Collins was shot and killed at Beal na Blath (22 August 1922) during the Irish Civil War.

Tony, Tatiana stood in the doorway of a single story stone building, part of the Michael Collins family home.Tony, Tatiana stood in the doorway of a single story stone building, part of the Michael Collins family home. Collin’s birthplace, Sam’s Cross, West Cork.

Tony, Tatiana in front of a stone cross surrounded by railings, a memorial to Michael Collins, situated at Beal na Blath.Tony, Tatiana in front of a stone cross surrounded by railings, a memorial to Michael Collins, situated at Beal na Blath, above the road close to where he was shot and killed during an arms fire fight between pro and anti-treaty Irish Nationalists (22nd August 1922).

Close-up of Tony and Tatiana in front of the memorial.Close-up of Tony and Tatiana in front of the memorial.

Tony, Tatiana by the stone cross. Memorial to Michael Collins, situated at Beal na Blath.Tony, Tatiana by the stone cross. Memorial to Michael Collins, situated at Beal na Blath.

Inside a traditional Irish Pub in Clonakilty, west Cork.Inside a traditional Irish Pub in Clonakilty, west Cork.

Tatiana inside the pub.Tatiana inside the pub.

17th May 2011

Tatiana standing on a bridge over the River Lee, Cork City.Tatiana standing on a bridge over the River Lee, Cork City.

View of buildings by the River Lee.View of buildings by the River Lee.

Blarney Castle, Blarney town, County Cork

Blarney Castle is a medieval castle. The first stone structure was built 1210 and the current castle dates from 1446. Built by McCarthys of Muskerry. It’s approximately 90 feet in height and is in partial ruin, but open to tourists annually.

A building and gift shop at the entrance to Blarney Castle, Blarney Village, County Cork.A building and gift shop at the entrance to Blarney Castle, Blarney Village, County Cork.

Tony, Tatiana standing on a bridge over a lake in the grounds of Blarney Castle, part of the estate.Tony, Tatiana standing on a bridge over a lake in the grounds of Blarney Castle, part of the estate.

Tatiana outside an entrance of thick stone walls, possibly the castle dungeon, located at the lower part of the hill up to the main tower.Tatiana outside an entrance of thick stone walls, possibly the castle dungeon, located at the lower part of the hill up to the main tower.

A view looking up at the thick stone castle walls.A view looking up at the thick stone castle walls.

Tatiana in a small, dark room made of stone, damp and cold with moss on the walls.Tatiana in a small, dark room made of stone, damp and cold with moss on the walls.

Castle gardens at the top of the hill near the main tower.Castle gardens at the top of the hill near the main tower.

View of the main tower from the castle gardens.View of the main tower from the castle gardens.

Entrance into the main part of Blarney Castle.Doorway with a sign ‘Stepping into Blarmey Castle’; the entrance into the main part of the castle that contains the old, narrow, winding stairs that lead to the battlements with its machicolations and the Blarney Stone.

Tony, Tatiana on the spiral staircase, containing 127 stone steps, up to the castle's battlements.Tony, Tatiana on the spiral staircase, containing 127 stone steps, up to the castle’s battlements.

View of fields and houses in the distance, taken from the castle's battlements.View of fields and houses in the distance, taken from the castle’s battlements.

Tony, Tatiana on the castle's battlements.Tony, Tatiana on the castle’s battlements.

Below: Tony, Tatiana kissing the Stone of Eloquence, Blarney Stone – Tony kissed the stone, Tatiana kissed air!

To kiss the magical Blarney Stone, which is said to give the gift of eloquence and leave the individual talking for days, you have to lie on your back and lean backwards over the parapet walk and kiss the stone, which is set in the wall below the battlements. The Blarney Stone is a block of bluestone set into Blarney Castle’s battlements. Legend states: kissing the stone endows the kisser with the gift of the gab (great eloquence or skill at flattery). The stone was set into one of the castle’s towers in 1446. The word blarney has come to mean “clever, flattering or coaxing talk”.

Tony kissing the Blarney Stone.Tony kissing the Blarney Stone.

Tatiana kissing the Blarney Stone.Tatiana kissing the Blarney Stone.

Tony, Tatiana on castle's battlements.Tony, Tatiana on castle’s battlements.

Berwick Fountain in Grand Parade, Cork City centre, taken in the evening.Berwick Fountain in Grand Parade, Cork City centre, taken in the evening. Built 1860 and named after Sergeant Walter Berwick who came to Cork in 1847 as Chairman of the Quarter Sessions court, a quarterly county court that dealt with minor criminal offences.