While planning our trip to Ireland one of the last places I added to our MUST SEE list was Glasnevin Cemetery. We were not able to get to the cemetery on our first round of days in Dublin, so I made sure we got there on the last day of our trip. It was an eventful day to say the least. But sharing all we did would be boring for you, so we move on.
Glasnevin is probably the one place not conveniently located in Dublin. Traffic is too much to contemplate driving, so we decided to take the hop on / off bus. Let me tell you, the driver hit something with his side mirror so the bus immediately went our of service. We got off the bus with another couple that we headed to the cemetery. We had about a 45 minute wait and decided to hit up Brazen Head, the oldest bar in Dublin for a quick lunch. After a quick bite and the obligatory Guinness (we were in Ireland after all) we headed back to the bus stop. The unfortunate is this, the cemetery closes in an hour. We have time for the tour, but if we take the tour we miss the last hop on / off bus. So we decided to purchase the map and walk to see the graves of those we were interested in.
This is the first cemetery that I had to purchase a map to find the headstones of those I was interested in seeing, and the map did not have all I wanted to see. But I will get into that in a bit. To me, the most important headstones I wanted to see was Daniel O’Connell (I think you can see his monument from all parts of the cemetery), Michael Collins and the mass grave site of the Magdalene laundries fallen women (155 total woman)1 That being said, it’s also the first cemetery that I have visited that has Ancestry for you to look up your family. They have a whole section dedicated to genealogy (we did not visit, not enough time and heck I have Ancestry at home).
In regards to what was not on the map, it was the mass grave for the Magdalene laundries. I spoke to a few different people to find out where the mass grave was and I was told to head towards the back of the cemetery and we would walk up to it. No such luck for us.
After I had my map I was on my way to searching for Michael Collins, and the mass grave site. I was successful with finding Mr. Collins, but unsuccessful on the mass grave. However, we did walk through the cemetery and I was able to take many pictures of the different headstones. I have to admit, I have NEVER seen so many Celtic crosses in a cemetery before.
We did come across the new movie being filmed about the 1916 Easter Rising, we chatted ever so briefly with someone who was working on the film. The film was being shot outside of the cemetery, but we could see what was going on and did our best to stay out of the filming (we hardly look like we are from 1916). I now wonder if it is the new movie The Rising: 1916 with Liam Neeson’s son, Michael Neeson playing Mr. Collins.2
I put together a short video with some of the pictures I took while walking Glasnevin.