An important aspect of this project was the cultural exchange of information between countries. This page highlights some of the visits arranged by host countries for their visitors and also gives information of activities recommended but which due to the lack of time participants were unable to experience
Glendalough - a monastic settlement just outside Dublin of scenic beauty and historical importance
An evening of Irish music and dancing – The Irish House Party
Trinity College Dublin – University in the centre of town and home of the Book of Kells. Walking tours given by students
Walking along the Royal Canal Way/River Liffey taking in new buildings of architectural significance – The Convention Centre and Grand Canal Theatre
Hop on, hop off bus tours for an overview of Dublin – “ghost” tour
Viking Splash tour
National Gallery – Art gallery with a large collection of works by the famous Irish painter, Jack B Yeats plus “The Taking of Christ” by Caravaggio. Entrance is free
Guinness Storehouse – www.guinness-storehouse.com
The Old Jameson Distillery - www.jamesonwhiskey.com
Other lesser know suggestions for visitors
1. Take the DART (overhead train) along the coast from Howth in North Dublin to Greystones in the South
2. In Howth a fishing village with a harbour lots of fishing and sailing boats, and restaurants. Walk along the cliff walks and see Balscadden Beach, where the first telegraph cable arrived in Ireland from Wales in 1852.
About 15 Km/10 miles from the city centre accessible on the DART
3. Hurdy Gurdy Museum of Vintage Radio, Martello Tower, Abbey Street, Howth, Dublin, http://ei5em.110mb.com/museum.html
4. Walk along the South Wall past the Poolbeg Lighthouse for splendid views of Dublin Bay with the Wicklow Mountains in the background.
5. The Iveagh Gardens, right next to the National Concert Hall.
Almost a "Secret Garden". http://www.heritageireland.ie/en/dublin/theiveaghgardens
Also in the Phoenix Park is Farmleigh House "the premier accommodation for visiting dignitaries and guests of the nation, for high level Government meetings, and for public enjoyment".
Visitors can check out www.discoverireland.ie for up to date information
Welcome to Helsinki, the World Design Capital 2012!
Places to visit in Helsinki:
The Market Square is Helsinki's most famous outdoor market. The booths sell traditional market foods and treats, as well as handicrafts and souvenirs. The hustle and bustle of the Market and its appetising smells act as a magnet for shoppers and for anyone looking for a snack or a coffee.
Suomenlinna Maritime Fortress: Pack a picnic and take the regular ferry from the Market Square to the island fortress of Suomenlinna. The World Heritage Listed fortress was founded in 1748 by the Swedes to protect them against the Russians.
Suomenlinna Maritime Fortress Market Square
Sibelius Monument: the abstract sculpture was built to glorify Finland's most famous composer Jean Sibelius. The monument was designed by Eila Hiltunen and unveiled 1967.
Helsinki Cathedral Sibelius Monument
For shopping, Stockmann is the No. 1 department store in the centre of the city. It is excellent for a wide range of goods, like clothes, books, jewellery, food and a lot more.
To taste some Finnish specialties, like reindeer, do as our group did during the Workshop, go to Restaurant Zetor.
To visit our southern neighbour country, Estonia, you might take one of the ferry boats to Tallinn, with Viking Line for example.
More information of Tallinn, see http://www.tourism.tallinn.ee/eng
Kaunas, the second-largest city in Lithuania has historically been a leading centre of Lithuanian economic, academic, and cultural life. During Russian Empire occupation it was the capital of the Kovno Governorate from 1843 to 1915. Between WWI and WWII it was a temporary capital of Lithuania. Kaunas is served by a number of major motorways. European Route E67 runs through Kaunas from Prague to Helsinki by way of Poland, Riga and Tallinn. It is known as the Via Baltica between Warsaw and Tallinn, a distance of 670 kilometres (420 mi). In 2010 Kaunas International Airport (KUN) became the 40th base of Ryanair.
In 1441 Kaunas joined the Hanseatic League, and Hansa merchant office Kontor was opened - the only one in the Grand Dutchy of Lithuania. The Hanseatic League was an economic alliance of trading cities and their merchant guilds that dominated trade along the coast of Northern Europe.
Hanseatic League tree Kaunas Castle tower from the 15th c.
The painter and composer Mikalojus Konstantinas Ciurlionis is the most emblematic figure in the history of Lithuanian culture. During his short life he composed about 250 pieces of music and created about 300 paintings. The majority of his paintings are housed in Čiurlionis Gallery built in 1925. Čiurlionis felt that he was a synesthete, i.e. he perceived colors and music simultaneously. Many of his paintings bear the names of musical pieces: sonatas, fugues, and preludes.
Music Room at the Mueum Rex, Tempera on canvas. 1909
Vilnius, the capital of Lithuania, is a jewel that many rulers once wanted to own and all visitors of Lithuania want to see. With the largest old town in the Baltic states, abundant baroque architecture, gothic & renaissance buildings Vilnius has a place in the UNESCO World Heritage List.
The Church of St. Casimir Old town view from the hill
Vilnius University dating back from 1479 is a group of Gothic, Renaissance, Baroque and Classicist style buildings extending over a whole block of the Old Town and connected by a labyrinth of 13 cozy courtyards.
The Roman catholic St. Anne’s Church was erected by the monks Franciscans around 1500. According to some historical sources, 33 different types of bricks were used to construct the church. St. Anne’s Church has a special significance for Vilnius and Lithuania due to its appearance and history, and it is also a popular wedding church.
A historic city and lake resort Trakai lies 28 km west of Vilnius. In early 15th Trakai was a political and an administrative centre of the Grand Duchy of Lithuania, sometimes named a de facto capital.
We enjoyed a ballet performance based on the historical drama Barbora Radvilaite at Lithuanian National Opera and Ballet Theatre in Vilnius. The story is about the tragic love story of Barbara Radziwill - Grand Duchess of Lithuania and Queen of Poland - and Sigismund II Augustus. There was substantial opposition to her marriage to the King from many nobles, as the marriage was carried out without regard to the laws governing royal marriages. It was pursued by the King, who disregarded the political liabilities and consequences and was truly in love with Barbara, one of the most beautiful women in Europe.
More interesting facts about Kaunas http://www.inyourpocket.com/lithuania/kaunas
Łódź is one of the youngest cities in Poland, and a direct product of the Industrial Revolution, which explains its oft-used nickname, ‘The Manchester of Poland’.
The Museum of Manufactura is a place where you can discover the history of textile factory founded by Izrael Poznański in mid 19th century. In the times of its past glory the factory produced million of meters of cotton material.
Today Lodz is a significant cultural centre, internationally known for its Film School, a cradle for the best Polish cameramen, actors and directors, including Andrzej Wajda and Roman Polanski.
The museum of Cinematography is housed in the mid-nineteenth century small palace (residence) of Karol Scheibler, one of the most important Lodz industrialists of German origin, known as "The Cotton King" because of his wealth and the scale of his production.
Radegast Station Museum is a memorial place of tragedy of Jews who survived or perished the Litzmannstadt Getto run by Germans during World War II. This small station was the arrival point for about 38 000 jews from Central Europe and the Wartheland district and about 5 000 gypsies who were massed into the Lodz Ghetto during 1941 and 1942.
The Jewish cemetery at the Bracka Street in Lodz was established in 1892. About 160 000 people are buried there. Today the Cemetery has an area of 39,6 hectare. In more than 100 years of the history of the Cemetery many meritorious for our city and its history people like known rabbis, fabricants, physicians, politicians, social activists etc were buried at this Cemetery. Their tombstones often show high class of stone and metal craftworks.
Piotrkowska Street is the main artery and attraction stretching north to south for a little over five kilometres, making it (one of) the longest commercial streets in the world. A few of the building fronts have been renovated and date back to the 19th century.
Although Łódź does not have any hills nor any large body of water, one can still get close to nature in one of the city's many parks, most notably Łagiewniki (the largest city park in Europe). Łódź has one of the best museums of modern art in Poland, Muzeum Sztuki http://msl.org.pl/ on Więckowskiego Street, which displays art by all important contemporary Polish artists.