This tour, with its combination of visits, will enable you to appreciate two, very different aspects of Ireland. There is Dublin Castle with its unique place in Irish history - it was the seat of English rule. Then there is Trinity College with its lawns and cobbled quads providing a pleasant haven in the heart of the city. A guided tour of the castle will show you the luxurious State Apartments. You'll see the lavish decorations and beautiful antique furniture that have served state heads from all over the world.
Close by is Trinity College, founded by Queen Elizabeth I on the site of an Augustinian monastery. You can admire the fine buildings and courtyards that make up this well known university, the oldest in Ireland. In the Old Library you'll see the Book of Kells, the most richly decorated of Ireland's Medieval illuminated manuscripts. The scribes who copied the texts embellished their calligraphy with intricate, interlacing spirals, as well as human figures and animals.
You'll also see the spectacular Long Room of the Library that houses 200,000 antiquarian texts, marble busts of scholars and the oldest surviving harp in Ireland. You'll be able to view an exhibition on how the Book of Kells was made, and general exhibits of Ireland, while waiting for entry to the viewing area. At the conclusion of the tour, you may remain in the center of Dublin for shopping or independent sightseeing, or return with your guide to your ship.