Looking back through my travel photos, I found several from Howth, Ireland, a city I never meant to travel to but would thoroughly recommend visiting. We had traveled to Dublin and after two days, were in search of something else.
As much as we liked exploring the old city and touring the Guinness factory, we wanted greenery, the ocean and to maybe climb a mountain. As strange as that all sounds, it’s exactly what we explained to the DART ticketing agent. Luckily for us, she was very helpful and told us about Howth, a twenty five minute train ride away. We bought our tickets and a short ride later we were in a small fishing village with the bluest skies and deep green mountains.
Howth turned out to be a bit of Ireland that I had seen in so many movies and exactly want we wanted. It was a Saturday afternoon in early Fall and even though the sun was shining, the air was crisp as the wind came off the sea. Right when you exit the train, you see all the boats lined up one by one. We walked along the jetty imagining what they seafood delights they brought home every night. We were even told that sometimes seals lay on the rocks, but there weren’t any that day.
After walking around the very small but adorable city, we bought some ice cream (we were craving it) and asked a jewelry store owner about the nearby mountain. She told us how to get to the old church ruins, where to find the cliff walk and that we would know we were there when we found the sign that said “cliff walk”. Best directions ever!
We wandered around the ruins and eventually hiked up to the top. Since no one else was really around, it felt like our private mountain to climb and explore. We could look over to Ireland’s Eye (a small uninhabited island and short boat ride away) and it felt like we weren’t in the 21st century anymore, but more like the 1500’s, exploring uncharted lands.
One of the last places we found before heading back to the train was St. Mary’s Church. This old church had red ivy growing all up the side of it and was so incredibly peaceful, just the way a church ought to be! I know if I lived in Ireland, this would be the place I would want to get married.
We were only in Howth for five or six hours, but that day will forever stay with me as something magical and pure. If you are in Dublin and had the same feelings I did, or just want to experience something truly unique and so unlike Dublin, you should definitely hop on the train. You don’t need much time to fall in love with this town.