Monday, 28 August 2017

28th August 2017 - Coleraine - Londonderry

Monday 28th August 2017

Knocktarna House
Knocktarna House
Northern Ireland

The driveway
We are full of information about the history of Ireland now.

The rivers are all so full and lively - this one in Bushmills, where we had dinner last nigh
Still not completely across it all…I would not pass an exam!

Michael Palin described the train journey between Derry~Londonderry and Coleraine as “one of the most beautiful rail journeys in the world.”  So we left the little blue car  in Coleraine and caught this train, to Londonderry and back.

Train, with Mussenden temple above
It was indeed a beautiful ride.

I didn’t take any beautiful photos.  It was dark and drizzling.  But Google took one for me – a nice one of the Mussenden Temple we went to yesterday, at Downhill Demesne (about to fall off the cliff and onto the railway line…)

Guildhall from Google
I liked Londonderry very much.  We went into the Guild Hall and learned a lot about the Plantation and the heinous treatment of the Irish people over many centuries.  We had a cup of coffee in the cafĂ© and looked out the window to see teeming rain…oh dear a walk around the walls would maybe not be fun…

On the wall
But miraculously it all cleared and we were able to walk right around the fortified city area on top of the walls, on a wide road.

Rooftops from  the wall 
To my surprise there was a Trojan horse peering over the tall ramparts.  ???  But a nice explanation – Londonderry is a city of stories, and what better stories than Homer’s??  The horse will be there for ten days, to commemorate the ten years of the Trojan Wars.

We now know what a bastion is – a wider area on a city wall, good for placing one’s canons. 

Pete posing with canons on a bastion
Apparently this is the largest collection of canons in the UK.  Londonderry was a very successfully fortified city.

We could see over the wall into the Bogside area, where there are lots of murals celebrating The Struggle.  (Bernadette Devlin etc.)

(Just as a small matter of interest…Ireland is so very wet everything grows prolifically – it is like the tropics.  Nearly every chimneypot and crevice is sprouting some sort of plant.  The roots must be eating away at the houses!)

Tomorrow – back to Belfast, and the next day off to Thetford in the UK.  Not much grass growing under our feet!!

Very pretty but possibly just a bit the touristy part of Londonderry

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