Off the Tourist Path

YiB-6Last week, I finished a book on the history of the Guinness Brewery. In talking about the death of Arthur Guinness, it mentioned where he was buried… in County Kildare just outside of Dublin. Of course, a light bulb went off in my head. I had the bright idea that we should visit his grave.

The odd thing is that the grave of one of the most well known Irishman in history is not sign-posted, nor is it very easy to find information on it. But armed with the name of the graveyard and a town, I was able to locate its proximity on a map.

YiB-6So after landing at Dublin Airport yesterday, we picked up a rental car and embarked on our quest to find the grave of Arthur Guinness.

Although we did get off the wrong exit, it was quite easy to backtrack on a country lane that paralleled the Grand Canal. We found the graveyard within a few minutes of leaving the highway.

Located on a quiet stretch of road, the graveyard sits on top of a hill surrounded by fields. After wandering around for a few minutes looking at gravestones, Merideth found what we were looking for… Arthur himself.

There was a great sense of satisfaction in successfully completing our first task of the day.

The second task of the day was to get to Roscommon, a town not on most tourist agendas, despite having one of the finest examples of an Anglo-Norman castle in all of Ireland.

So why were we in Roscommon?

If anyone remembers my December post “Dublin Discovery“, I mentioned how much I loved this beer called Galway Hooker Irish Pale Ale. When I tried it in December, I knew I wanted to visit the brewery. And Roscommon is the home of the Galway Hooker Brewery.

I arranged for us to meet up with the brewer, Aidan Murphy. It was very generous of Aidan to accommodate us on a Friday afternoon when he was finishing up a brew.

We were able to sample the beer straight out of the fermenters and I have to say… Wow! It was even more hoppy and wonderful than I remembered… an amazing brew. Definitely seek out this beer when you are in Ireland. Check out the Irish Craft Brewers website; they keep a list of pubs that serve craft beer.

Thanks again to Arthur and Aidan for making Day 1 of our trip pretty special.

To view all the trip images click here.