By Ciara Lydon
Visitors to Dublin will be able to enjoy four new walking trails in the capital, on which they can enjoy the city’s rich culture and history, with the added benefit of a new phone app.
The four routes, which take in some of Dublin’s most famous, as well as lesser-known sights, have been officially launched in Dublin in time for next year’s 1916 centenary.
Fáilte Ireland, Lord Mayor Christy Burke and Minister for Tourism Paschal Donohoe. also launched a mobile friendly way to access the routes, via free app Dublin Discovery Trails, which allows visitors to access the routes on their iOS and Android devices providing; audio guides, GPS enabled maps and images.
The trails connect to the Dubline, the main tourist trail previously established by Fáilte Ireland which takes visitors to key Dublin sites from Kilmainham Gaol to Parnell Square.
The new routes are intended to make it easier for tourists to navigate around Dublin and discover sites of both historical and cultural importance.
The trails are:
Echoes of War: This route reflects on Dublin’s military past and association with the British Army in terms of service and rebellion. The trail includes sights such as the Royal Hospital Kilmainham, Kilmainham Gaol, the Irish National War Memorial Gardens and Collins Barracks.
Empire: This trail highlights the importance of Dublin when Ireland was part of the British Empire. Stops include Dublin Castle, the Bank of Ireland and St Patrick’s Cathedral.
The Story of Dublin: This route shows Dublin’s 1000 year history. Landmarks on the trail include City Hall, Christ Church Cathedral, St Audoen’s Church and Smock Alley Theatre.
Rebellion: This trail documents the story and events of the six day long Easter Rising in 1916. Stops include the GPO, which was the rebels’ headquarters, Dublin Castle, Trinity College and the Garden of Remembrance where the heroes of the rebellion, including Patrick Pearse and Joseph Plunkett, are remembered.
The four new trails are based along the ‘spine’ of the Dubline which was developed by Fáilte Ireland to make Dublin easier to navigate and experience for tourists.
Over the last two years, Fáilte Ireland and Dublin City Council have invested €4 million (£2.8m) into projects to develop and promote the Dubline, including work at Christchurch and St Patrick’s Cathedral and ongoing signage projects to highlight the four trails.
Fáilte Ireland, the Lord Mayor Christy Burke and Paschal Donohoe all have hopes that these new trails will encourage a growth in tourism in Dublin.
They hope that tourists will find the city more accessible and historically interesting, increasing the footfall of tourists in the years to come.
Fáilte Ireland executive Shaun Quinn says that the new trails should help Dublin become a ‘must-see’ tourist destination, increasing tourist numbers and boosting the economy.