Thursday, October 18, 2012

Room with a View: Belfast, Ireland

"Room with a View: Townhome Living"
Belfast, Ireland

Murals from "The Troubles"
Our next stop was Belfast, via, trains to Dublin and Belfast, where we learned a surprising fact -- they are rated the second safest city in the world after Tokyo. We stayed in the Crescent Townhouse, turned small hotel, with a good B&B rate with one dinner. The room and bath was lavishly large in a country where small rooms are the norm. It was in the Queens University district. Across the street were well-kept brick townhomes seen above in my sketch.
The Botanical Gardens are lovely and a short walk from our hotel

The Chicago cow sculptures has caught on there
and we enjoyed a fall festival with locals

In the neighborhood
We had a lot of rain and chill, true of our entire trip. Our tour of town by Hop On Hop Off bus took us to Shankill and Falls Roads where something akin to the Berlin Wall and many political murals remind us of the troubled times when Catholic and Protestant neighbors fought for their ideals, and the region remained in the UK and separate from the Republic of Ireland. We were told that many people in the Republic have never visited "Ulster" as it is know in the UK, a mere 2.5 hours by train from Dublin.
Of interest is the Titanic Museum because the ship was built in these mighty shipyards. Compromises were made that caused despair among the designers. Unfortunately, our attempt to tour it without a reservation was unsuccessful, the museum is that popular. A bonus was seeing a road race from the bus.

Titanic Museum


Barbra Joan said...

Thanks for taking me to Ireland Mary, your photos (and paintings) are always a treat. BJ

hw (hallie) farber said...

You always make me want to jump on a plane, a train, and a bus. Do you study the history of the countries you plan to visit or do you chose countries because you know their history?

CrimsonLeaves said...

I totally agree with BJ. Ireland is home to my ancestors somewhere down the line. I've always wanted to visit. Never did understand the allure of our cow sculptures. They don't do anything for me, but then neither does the bean, the Picasso statue, nor the huge Marilyn Monroe statue. LOL

hmuxo said...

Beautiful painting, Mary....and love all your photos from Ireland!! A beautiful Country...

Mary Paquet said...

BJ, always nice to take a friend along.

Hallie, we generally know a bit about the country and hear about them from friends, so we decide to go there. Then we study up a bit. In this case, I knew more about history of England, than Scotland or Ireland. I love to read historical biographies and novels, so I've been on a Scotland binge, reading about Mary Queen of Scots (1542 to 1587) and Queen Margarite (1045 to 1093), both inspired by our visit to the castle in Edinburgh.

Hilda, thanks so much. It is a beautiful country.