St. Anne’s Park was the perfect way to start my adventure in Dublin. Despite the entrance being grand, it is almost as if it is hidden away, as there is no prominent sign. One of my favorite travel stories, actually, happened here. I was sure we were in the right place, however, my husband was not. So, he walked up to an Irishman and asked him, “Excuse me, sir. Is this St. Anne’s Park?”
The gentleman smiled, nodded, and said, “Tis!” My husband was so stoked that he heard a real person use the word, “Tis”. He still talks about it, and it always puts a huge smile on my face.
After ensuring that we were in the right place, we continued down the large main walkway that seemed to stretch on forever. As I went further back into the park, I passed by soccer field after soccer field. Old men passed me with their dogs running around freely beside them. I passed families and fields stretching on and on until I found what I was looking for: the woods. (So please note, if you’re looking for the woods and all the adventures that lie in it- which is absolutely my MO, you need to walk a ways from the entrance towards the back of the park.)
Hidden within the woods of this beautiful piece of nature were old architectural treasures. As I went through the path to the duck pond, I found an old bridge with castle-like windows that used to serve as a tower stuck down on the path. It makes you feel as if you are a real explorer, constantly discovering unique abandoned structures from medieval times. And you get this from a park!
As I progressed deeper still, there were hidden stone caverns, old wells, a Roman-style tower on a hill, and a beautiful arched Herculanean temple. Coming through the clearing of the trees, there was a mystical Temple of Isis at the duck pond. It was magical. There was a circular grouping of trees placed almost perfectly in a circle around a fire pit, leaving the imagination to believe it was a place where rituals were performed. The treasures were vast, and who would have thought they would be right there on the edge of the busy park?
The mystery and mysticism of this amazing place made me feel like I was on a giant adventure. And all of these magical, ancient buildings and ruins were hidden just in the depths of the forest right in the middle of Dublin at one of their main parks. It was a great way to start my trip back in time while exploring Dublin.
All in all, I really liked the city of Dublin. My husband wasn’t as into it, as he really wanted to get the medieval feel out of Ireland. So, he cherished the castles along the Irish countryside and would have rather been enjoying castles instead of seeing the city. So, this was a treat for him. Getting to step out of the busy city and hunt for ruins was a true Irish adventure!