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Aran Inspired

County Down Museum

The building that houses the County Down Museum was once a local jail dating back to 1789. Now painstakingly restored, it houses exhibits centered around the life of St. Patrick, carved crosses from the 8th and 10th centuries, a selection of audiovisual presentations, and agricultural exhibits that include old farm implements and details about animals raised on local farms. Historical items on display include Bronze Age weapons, pottery, implements and tools, along with domestic crafts from the 19th century. There is a special section focusing on artifacts from the 1798 uprising.

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Enniskillen Town Hall

The copper dome of the town hall clock tower can be seen from anywhere in the town of Enniskillen. It stands on a hilltop, a landmark in the county town and commerce centre of Fermanagh. Designed and built in renaissance style, the front of the building is made from dark limestone, while the bright cream Dungannon sandstone columns, cornices, and statues provide a decorative contrast to the appearance of the exterior. The finishing touch is applied by the hand carved oak main entrance doors. Inside, the lobby features a finely detailed floor mosaic that depicts the Enniskillen coat of arms. It survived a bomb blast in 1972, unlike the remainder of the floor, which had to be replaced.

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Galway City Museum

Located near the Spanish Arch, the museum was founded in 1976. Its structure was formerly a private house, home to sculptress Clare Sheridan. The museum site is also located near the place where the original city docks were built in 1270. In addition to the Spanish Arch, there were three others - only the Blind Arch remains. The missing two arches were located at the spot where the museum now stands. A speculation is that the Arches were used to store imported goods and avoid taxation. Galway City Museum contains a variety of Irish artifacts from historical events, including the Connaught Rangers, the Civil War, and the Insurrection of 1916.

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Mt. Stewart Estate

You can find Mt. Stewart Estate just north of the Village of Greyabbey, where the mild climate of the peninsula is kind to growing exotic plants like those that flourish in its gardens. These unique beds, terraces, and walkways were laid out after WWI and are considered to be some of the finest in the country. The estate was the seat of the Marquises of Londonderry, and the manor house was built upon the remains of an earlier structure, beginning in 1804 when George Dance created the west face. William V. Morrisson designed the neoclassical main wing, added in 1845.

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Dunsink Observatory

Dunsink Observatory is one of the longest-established observatories in the world and holds the distinctive title of the oldest scientific institution in Ireland. Built on the south slope of a low hill, the observatory was established in 1785 in Dunsink near Dublin. Today, Dunsink Observatory is of interest to astronomy buffs as well as visitors from around the world. The building is located 5 miles / 8 kilometres northwest of Dublin City centre, just off exit 5 of the M50 motorway.

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W.B. Yeats Statue

This original, unusual statue of Ireland's national poet William Butler Yeats was unveiled by his son in 1989 to mark the 50th anniversary of the writer's death.

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Smock Alley Theatre

The beautiful, atmospheric 17th century Smock Alley theatre is one of the oldest purpose-built theatres in Europe. Opened in 1662 by Scotsman John Ogilby, who also created the first road map of Britain.

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John’s Lane Church

Located in the Liberties district on Thomas St., this distinctive red sandstone and granite building is commonly known as John's Lane Church. In fact, its correct name is the Church of St. John the Baptist and St. Augustine --- a bit of a mouthful! Little wonder that locals preferred to name it after its location at the corner of John's Lane, a steep and narrow side-street. It is served by the Augustinian Order of monks and is a fully functioning Catholic church with all associated services.

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Leinster House

Leinster House is a beautiful, palace-like complex of buildings occupied by the Irish Parliament, its members, and staff. It is the meeting place of Dail Eireann, the lower house, and Seanad Eireann, the senate, which together form the two houses of the Oireachtas, Parliament. The Parliament sits in session for 90 days each year.

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St. Mary's Pro Cathedral

St. Mary's Pro Cathedra is the main Catholic parish church of Dublin City centre, situated on a back-street, one block east of O'Connell Street. St. Mary's has the unusual status of pro-Cathedral, meaning "temporary" or "acting" Cathedral". The Cathedral was built in 1825, at a time when Catholics still had few rights in the city, where power was held by the ruling Protestant elite.

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