As you may be aware, 2016 is a big year in Ireland. This year marks the 100 year anniversary of the 1916 Rising, a pivotal point in Irish history. The 1916 Rising lit the fuse that eventually led to 26 of the 32 counties of Ireland getting their independence from Britain.
The Rebellion took place during Easter Week 1916 and was mostly based in and around Dublin City Centre. With the element of surprise, the rebels took over strategic buildings in Dublin on Easter Monday morning while many of the British soldiers were enjoying the races at Fairyhouse in nearby County Meath. There were around 2000 rebels trying to hold off almost 20,000 British troops by the end of Easter Week. While the rebellion was quickly crushed, the 1916 Rising has left its mark as one of the most important events in Irish history.
The 1916 Rising has a special place in the hearts of many Irish people so some of us at Love Irish Tours decided to learn some more.
We decided to go on a walking tour of the locations involved in the 1916 Rising in Dublin City Centre. We took part in a walking tour run by 1916rising.com.
We met our guide at the gates of Trinity College, a top Dublin attraction. When the group had all gathered we went in to the courtyard of Trinity College where we learned more about the college itself and about its role in the 1916 Rising.
Then we headed out of Trinity College in the direction of O’Connell Street, taking a number of stops along the way, where various buildings were pointed out to us including the Old Parliament Building and Liberty Hall, and the locations of the British cannons that were firing up O’Connell Street.
Our next stop was the monument of Daniel O’Connell on O’Connell Street. From there we walked the short distance to the GPO (General Post Office), stopping briefly at other important monuments on the way. The GPO is probably the most famous site of the 1916 Rising. It is here where most of the leaders of the rebellion were fighting. You can still see the bullet holes in the huge concrete pillars at the front of the building. Seeing the bullet holes helps you to place yourself right in the middle of the battle and it brings it all to life. Our guide gave us a lot of interesting information here and also told us some amusing stories including the one about the Finn and the Swede who joined in the fighting – you can ask your guide to tell you what happened!
From here we followed the route the rebels took when they evacuated the GPO and moved down to Moore Street under heavy fire. Again here in these narrow side streets it is very easy to place yourself in the rebels’ shoes, with many of them wounded, trying to avoid the British machine guns and get to safety. On Moore Street we visited the site of the last stand of the rebels. Here in these terraced houses the rebels were completely surrounded and watched as innocent civilians were gunned down by British soldiers. The leader of the rebels, Pádraig Pearse, having witnessed one such incident decided to surrender to prevent any further loss of life. Here the 1916 Rising came to an end.
From Moore Street we continued on to City Hall, and Dublin Castle, pausing briefly at notable locations along the way. Dublin Castle was the headquarters of the British during the Rising. It was here that our tour came to an end. The tour lasted for around two hours in total. Their tours can be shortened if you are on a limited timeframe.
If you have a few hours to spare on your itinerary in Dublin we would highly recommend taking this walking tour. All their guides are PHD qualified and some of them have authored their own books on subjects related to the 1916 Rising. They are very personable, have a lot of information and knowledge and are very willing to answer questions. A great way to get to know Dublin City!
For more information you can visit their website at 1916rising.com
If you would like to add this great walking tour to your itinerary contact us and we’ll do the rest!
Click here for more information on our Love Irish Tours Itineraries.
Check out our youtube channel at Love Irish Tours TV to learn more about the 1916 Rising and other aspects of the history of Ireland.
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