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The Phoenix Also Rises in Dublin

An off the beaten track walking tour of Dublin in Phoenix Park
Rating: 5 out of 5 by EveryTrail members
Difficulty: Easy
Length: 11.4 miles
Duration: Half day
Family Friendly

Overview :  Celebrating 350 years, Phoenix Park still reverberates with Victorian sensibilities, pomposity and power, medieval, majestic, and... more »

Tips:  To get there, you can catch a number of buses from the City Centre and from the central train stations. Phoenix Park is a 20-minute... more »

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Points of Interest

1. Papal Cross

The park dates back to 1662, when the Duke of Ormonde fenced off land north of the Liffey and established a Royal Hunting Park for visiting British monarchs. A large herd of the descendents of the Duke of Ormonde's original fallow deer still roam the park.

The very best place to spot them any time of year is at the Papal Cross, the start of this... More

2. Deerfield Residence

The Deerfield Residence, originally built in 1774, is the former residence of the Chief Secretary for Ireland and before that was the Park Bailiff's lodge. It has been the official residence of the United States Ambassador to Ireland since 1927.

Among the prominent Chief Secretaries who have occupied this residence were Sir Arthur Wellesley,... More

3. Phoenix Monument

The Phoenix Monument was erected by the fourth Earl of Chesterfield in 1747. The column is carved in Portland stone. It is in the shape of a Corinthian column with a Phoenix bird rising from the ashes at its pinnacle. It is located in the centre of the Park and forms a focal point of a large roundabout on the beautiful tree-lined Chesterfield... More

In the 12th century, the lands Phoenix Park now occupies were granted to the Knights Hospitaller who were closely linked to the Knights Templars. The Knights controlled most of Europe's ecclesiastical power, military and finance.

In the 1430s, they built Ashtown Castle, a medieval tower which was found hidden within the walls of a much larger... More

Home to the Presidents of Ireland since 1922, Aras an Uachtarain has also slept Queen Victoria and George V. American presidents hosted here include John F. Kennedy, Richard Nixon, Ronald Reagan, Bill Clinton and Barack Obama, all of Irish descent.

In 2011, Queen Elizabeth II became the first British monarch to visit the Áras on the occasion of ... More

The park’s Victorian empire ethos is extended with the Victorian Polo Pavilion on the Nine Acres, and the cricket club which is on the opposite side of the main road, Chesterfield Avenue. The Phoenix Park Cricket Club was founded in 1830 by John Parnell, father to Charles Stewart Parnell, known as the “father of the nation.” The oldest cricket... More

7. Zoological Gardens Dublin

The Royal Zoological Society of Dublin was established at a meeting held at the Rotunda Hospital on 10 May 1830 and the Zoological Gardens Dublin was opened the following year.

It is no coincidence that the founders of Dublin Zoo were members of the medical profession. Their interest was in studying the animals while they were alive and getting ... More

8. Wellington Monument

Wellington Monument is Europe’s tallest obelisk, standing at 62 metres high. Originally, the intention was to make it taller and to build a bronze monument of the Duke of Wellington astride a horse. However, they ran out of money and had to make do as is.

Completed in 1861, the esoteric-looking monument commemorates the heroic feats of... More

9. Magazine Fort

Magazine Fort, which sits atop the man-made Thomas Hill, was built in 1611 to protect the city. However, at the time the city was an impoverished ruin, prompting the satirist, and author of Gulliver’s Travels, Jonathan Swift to write:

Now's here's a proof of Irish sense
Here Irish wit is seen
When nothing's left that's worth defence
We build a... More