St. Stephen’s Green
St. Stephen’s Green is Ireland’s best known Victorian public park and Europe’s biggest square, and is open to the public. One of the most popular sights to see in Dublin, summer days in the park can be spent idling away on the nine elegantly landscaped hectares of St Stephen’s Green.
The buildings around the square date mainly from the mid-18th century, when the green was landscaped and became the centrepiece of Georgian Dublin. The northern side was known as the Beaux Walk and it’s still one of Dublin’s most esteemed stretches, home to Dublin’s original society hotel, the Shelbourne. Also nearby is the small Huguenot Cemetery established in 1693 by French Protestant refugees – well worth a visit.
The park also has a place in Irish history. During the Easter Rising of 1916, a group of insurgents made up mainly of members of the Irish Citizen Army, under the command of Commandant Michael Mallin and his second-in-command Constance Markievicz, established a position in St Stephen’s Green. They insurgents numbered between 200 and 250. They dug defensive positions into the park but found that they had to retreat to the Royal College of Surgeons after the British took up positions on top of the Shelbourne Hotel. Overlooking the park, the British army fired down into the trenches and pushed back the rebels from the park.
There was a ceasefire during the battle at the park in order to allow the park’s grounds man to feed the local ducks.
Address: Stephen’s Green, Dublin 2