Between Dublin City and the rural playground that is all of County Wicklow, where a small peninsula and accompanying island stick out into the Irish Sea, Ireland's rich and famous make their homes.
And for good reason.
Down there in the beautiful seaside villages of Dalkey and Killiney, some of the most expensive real estate in Europe overlooks the beautiful sea and the coastal mountains—all within a quick train (or stretch limousine) ride away from the hustle and bustle of Dublin.
We'd also heard that Dalkey and Killiney have a great hilltop park between them with great trails and great views. Excited, we took the DART down the coast on Easter Monday to find...fog.
|Fog on Dalkey Hill|
The air was clear at our place when we left; the air was clear on the train going south; the air was clear getting off the train. As we approached the seaside cliffs walk, we watched the thick fog roll in from the Irish sea, pushing up the hill from sea level. From where we were on the seaside, we could see nothing but a midday gray-out. We walked down to one of many swimming beaches on Dublin's coast before heading uphill into the hilltop park. Thankfully...
|Looking Down at a Cloud|
|Sugarloaf in the Fog|
We climbed above the fog line into clear blue sky. In the distance to the south, we could see the top of the Great Sugarloaf in the Wicklows peeking up out of its own fog bank.
Even more strangely, when we got to the north edge of the park and looked toward the city, the weird sea fog could only be seen around Howth. Dublin seemed to be protected by the Dalkey/Bray peninsulas to the south and Howth to the north. It was strange stuff looking from right to left; a thick fog obscuring everything here, a cityscape stretching for miles there.
|Dun Laoghaire and Dublin from Dalkey Hill|
After admiring Dublin to the north, we headed south to the other rise of this double-humped hill. The other side of the park faced Killiney, where the real money is. But first we had to get there, climbing up the attractive trail.
|Steps up Killiney Hill|
On the Killiney peak, we looked at the obelisk...because there isn't anything else to do with an obelisk, I guess. This obelisk and a nearby step pyramid were built as pleasant hilltop monuments in the eighteenth century. Today, they are just nice landmarks serving as a backdrop for the panoramic view of the sea and South County Dublin.
From the top, we could really see the effect of the sea fog. It must have been the warm air hitting the cold water of the sea, because the fog had very little staying power over the land below.
|Sea Fog Dying over Land|
I was hoping to take notes on the correct way to get from the south side of Killiney Hill back to the DART station so I could include this walk in an upcoming "Easy Hikes on the DART Line" section for The Frugal Guide, but we took a wrong turn coming into the village and ended up walking way too far inland, ending up closer to Dun Laoghaire, four DART stops from where we planned to finish our day. Oh well, it was a nice day, and we saved four stops' fare for our homeward journey!
I still plan to include this scenic walk in the book in some way, but I'll have to find a Cory-proof route to describe and map first!