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Dublin, Ireland

Ha'penny Bridge, a landmark pedestrian bridge built over the River Liffey in Dublin in 1816. Photo © Sacred Destinations.

Dublin is the largest city and capital of Ireland, with a population of 1.5 million. More than a third of the entire country's population now lives in the city, which is at the center of an economic boom that began in the 1990s. The River Liffey divides Dublin into north and south, spanned by the landmark Ha'Penny Bridge. The buzzing, prosperous part of Dublin lies mostly south of the Liffey, where most of the best sights, hotels, restaurants, and shops can be easily walked in an hour. Dublin has become one of Europe's chicest cities, with trendy coffee shops, juice bars, and fantastic restaurants. It is also home to a number of historic and interesting religious sights, including no less than three cathedrals and the famous Book of Kells.

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Sacred Sites and Religious Attractions in Dublin

  • Christ Church Cathedral
    Founded in 1038 by a Dane and rebuilt in 1171 by a Norman, this Protestant cathedral was rebuilt in Victorian style in the 1870s.
  • St. Audoen's Church
    Dating from around 1200, St Audoen's is the only medieval parish church still in use within the city of Dublin. It has excavated ruins, a visitor's centre and a section used as an active parish church.
  • St. Mary's Pro-Cathedral
    Known affectionately as "The Pro," this is the unofficial Catholic cathedral of Dublin. It was built in 1825 in a Neoclassical style.
  • St. Michan's Church
    Originally founded by the Danes in 1075, this 17th-century parish church has some fine woodwork and a burial vault with well-preserved corpses on display.
  • St. Patrick's Cathedral
    St. Patrick's is the Protestant "co-cathedral" with Christ Church. Rebuilt in the 1870s, it is said to occupy the site where Patrick baptized his first Irish converts in the 5th century.
  • Trinity College
    Founded just after the Reformation to "civilize Dublin," this historic college is especially famed for its library full of treasures, including the splendid 9th-century Book of Kells.