Dublin’s Poolbeg chimneys are iconic, on a clear day you can see them from almost anywhere in the city. They feature heavily in art about the city and since 2014 have been protected structures but I, like many Dubliners, had never been there before, so a few weeks ago I went on an adventure!
We started by getting the bus to Sandymount Strand and paying a visit to the local shop for snacks to fuel the walk. When we got there the tide was almost fully in so we only had time for a few quick snaps before we had to run off the beach and start the walk towards Poolbeg.
The first stage of the walk is along the seafront, the sea air was filling our lungs and the sea views were filling our cameras. For such a scenic location so close to the city centre it was strange how quiet and peaceful it was, we were joined only by the occasional jogger and as we got closer to the naturepark part of the walk they got fewer and fewer.
Once past the seafront we got to Irishtown Nature Park, there is three options of paths through the park and seeing as my friends and I had been discussing poetry we took the road less travelled. The path was completely different to the previous seafront walk, a mud track through what was all but a forrest. I found out afterwards that the park is actually just an old landfill that was let grow wild, perhaps this explained the strange smell, we just thought it was the gas factory up ahead!
After the walk through the nature park we found ourselves at the base of the Poolbeg chimneys, You can’t get close so they seem as distant as ever. They’re like the red and grey rainbows of Dublin, you can see them everywhere, but never find the pot of gold beneath.
The final part of our walk was out along the pier to the Poolbeg lighthouse, the narrow ‘Great South Wall’ goes over two kilometers out to sea with the lighthouse on the end. It’s the perfect spot to sit and watch the boats come in, the perfect spot to end a walk.
Overall my friends and I spent five hours walking around the Sandymount/Poolbeg area that day, although it could’ve been done in much less is we didn’t spend so much time sitting down and taking photos! It’s an excellent walk for someone who wants to see a different side to Dublin and also provides so many different vistas as you go through the stages of the walk, I can highly recommend a visit.