I was having a dinner meeting in Dublin- Ireland , Meeting was organized by IDA with one of their clients over a wine , they were happily talking about Hurling one of the Sport of Ireland which was widely played , It was 3000 year old game . It is mix of hockey, football , and rugby. I was surprised I did not know about it . Decided to find out what Ireland is popular for.
I was on a Business trip to Ireland, but it was short and memorable 4 day tour to Dublin. It was 8.30 PM landed on a Sunday. Bright sunshine outside and understood the sunsets as late as 10.30 PM. Picked up small talk with Chauffer and he was very happy that he drove in Modi’s convoy few months back and he was claiming half the Limo in Ireland is booked during our PM’s trip . He was also conveying their next prime minister for Ireland is half Indian. Full of lush green through out the journey from Airport to O’collaghan Stephens green Hotel . I remembered ooty , British colonies always had nice greeneries around and nice buildings . Ireland was one of the colony for them . Dublin is part of Republic of Ireland , northern Ireland is still with UK. He mentioned many tourists come there for golf. I understood 60% of worlds golf field is between Ireland and UK . when he dropped me at the hotel he was extremely courteous. I don’t know whether that is effect of British colony. He told me don’t miss going to trinity College library one of the best place to visit. I did not find time to visit .
Got down from the Limo and looked around and saw the site of Tram . It is one the transport available for people. Checked in to the room . Rooms are larger then typical European hotel . While checking in saw many of visitors relaxing in Pub post golf and some of them after site seeing.
Since it was day travel slept well and woke up very early , it was bit dark and drizzling, By 6am got down to street for a cool walk . It was 12 degree, straight from Chennai , felt like walking inside a Air-conditioned city. When I started to walk I saw very few are walking or some of them cycling. Drizzling started, if I would not have come for Business meet , I would have walked in the rain . . But tourist who are interested to walk around there is walking tour in Dublin for Euro 20 , walk is for 2 hours . Every day went to Stephens green park for a walk .The cool weather with mild breeze and green around I felt very light. Want to sit there doing nothing . Park had few statues around and I was surprised to see Rabindra Nath Tagore statue , when googled saw he was first Non European Nobel Laureate , hence one of his Irish Poet friend opened his statue on Tagore 150 birth anniversary. It was very nice feeling.
Next day had my Irish Breakfast and headed to Carlow which was 80Km drive , I was accompanied by Senior Executive of IDA . It was nice drive and saw some horse grazing in the field , It was beautiful scene to watch . When I commented about the Nature she told me country has some best horses in the world. May be because of climate which is between 4 to 20 C. They Breed horses in few miles from the place on the way to carlow .
Been to Carlow Institute of technology, engaged in few meetings . Realized that they have good talent coming out of university who can be engaged by leading companies.
I was taken to visit a office space which was located beside a river shore very Beautiful location , rental was euro 12 / Sq ft . My mind was calculating it is lesser than Chennai IT park. We also get good resources from the university. Similar property in Dublin might cost euro 70 / Sq ft . Why not we do next start up there?? . When we drove back to Dublin saw few rowing clubs , I was told they have best rowing teams and Sailing teams in the world .
The IDA executive who accompanied me to Carlow is specialized in managing Chinese investments coming in to the country , and I asked her where does Chinese investors invests . She told me most of the investment come in for Aircraft leasing , and Ireland companies plays major role , 50% of world aircraft leased by Ireland companies . She travels regularly to china one thing they like to get from Ireland is BABY MILK . Ireland is largest producer of Baby milk and best Beef too.
Next day visited to Dundalk to a universities and IDA organized few more meeting in their office , On return nearing Dublin was struck in traffic and buses where going free in the lane left to us . They also have right hand driving like India and other lane is only for buses . We move faster in Bus than using our own cars .
When I came close to Dublin there where many cycles parked in parking lots , it is one of the method where the tourist and people of Ireland use for their transportation . You can pick up the cycle and drop it close to a place where you wanted to visit, we have to get some renting card to use the facility. It was cool seen to see cyclists has separate lane too .
Next day I had one meeting in the morning hours and rest of the day free till the night . Decided to take Hop in and Hop off tour it was euro 20 for a day visit . Took a bus within ten minutes saw one Indian Restaurant got down had lunch euro 12 for a fixed meal and again took the bus . Bus has routed in Dublin some prominent tourists places saw 3 churches , few distilleries, the guide told that IRISH invented whisky one point they had 26 whisky distilleries and few Beer breweries . Bus also took us through the Guinness Brewery , Teeling and Jameson Distilleries, Thought I should have extended my stay by one day only to go around these places and taste some good fresh alcohol .
When I took the plane back I was convinced, why company like google , Microsoft , Verizon, Linked -in has set their offices here , good climate , multilingual resources , cheaper and loyal , friendly taxation and pleasant weather , pious people and beautiful country . IDA is there to help for handholding for your success.
Some planning tips
- Staying middle of city will cost Approximately Euro 200 per night
- Can plan for a minimum 4 days trip
- PUBS and various cuisines are places to hop
- Cost of lunch/ dinner plan for euro 10 / person/ day
- Walking / Jogging/ Cycling best place to do
- Tesco departmental store is there every where in Dublin . We have salad of our choice for euro 2.
- Many gyms are around
- Pedestrian shopping street
- Stephens green mall is in walking distance .
- Airport shopping is small
- Good Colleges for education
- Real tourist friendly place .