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Cruise Ports of Call Cruising Europe

The Port of Dunmore East & Waterford, Ireland

The port of Dunmore East is located very near the city of Waterford and while Dunmore East has a small harbor it is not an industrial port. The larger ships visiting are primarily cruise ships. The town itself is a quant seaside village with galleries, gift shops and restaurants and some nice walking trails along the shore. The villages charm and natural surroundings are well worth spending some time ashore. It is a bit isolated however and transportation options are few. It is also a tender port as there are no docks capable of handling large ships.

Where Your Ship Docks

Large ships cannot dock at Dunmore East and will anchor offshore. Tenders will bring you into an enclosed harbor that serves small commercial boats. The harbor is adjacent to the village proper and there are a number of shops and trails along the shore line.

Transportation – Because of the distance and lack of available transportation this is a port where booking tours thru the cruise ship might be a better option, especially if you want to visit Waterford. The trip into Waterford is about twelve miles and often cruise ships will offer a shuttle service to Waterford. The quickest way to get from Dunmore East to Waterford is a taxi which costs about $35 and takes about twenty minutes. The only other option is a direct bus service departing from Dunmore East and arriving at Lombard Street in downtown Waterford. Buses depart every four hours, and operate Monday to Saturday. Again the journey takes about 20 min.

Money – Ireland (the Republic) uses the Euro and generally do not accept the British Pound. Northern Ireland is separate from the Irish Republic, is part of the United Kingdom and uses the Pound.

Dunmore East is located on the River Suir and as your ship sails in or departs you should get a good view of the Hook Lighthouse on the opposite shore. The area around the Suir and Waterford is home to a number of notable castles with some dating back to the twelfth century and the Viking era.

Attractions – Other than the scenery and the atmosphere of a quant seaside resort village most of the points of interest are located in the nearby city of Waterford.

Waterford itself was once one of Ireland’s most important cities, It was historically a place of great wealth due to its role as a seaport and trading center. Much of this wealth was used to build the city’s public buildings in the 18th and 19th centuries. One of the most attractive and opulent of these is the Bishop’s Palace. A beautiful architectural treasure over 250 years old. It is now a museum with the ground and first floors furnished as a very elegant 18th century townhouse.

Waterford was originally established by Vikings and was a major Viking settlement for hundreds of years. In 914, the great Viking adventurer and pirate, Regnall, established a base here and built a Longphort or ships haven. In 918, Regnall took a fleet of ships and left Waterford sailing for York and he became the first Norse ruler with the title ‘King of Waterford and York’. The name Waterford is derived from its Viking name Vadrarjfordr meaning “haven from the windswept sea”. The City was captured by the Anglo Normans in 1170 and the Vikings were expelled. After that Waterford was raised to the status of Royal City owing allegiance to the Anglo Norman King of England, Henry II.

When visiting Waterford be sure and spend time visiting the Viking Triangle, a cultural and heritage area. The Viking Triangle is surrounded by 1000-year-old Viking walls. It is the ‘old town’ of Waterford and is just a short walk from the city’s shopping mall area. The Viking Triangle is an interesting place, with narrow streets and alleys to explore. Inside are a number of attractions of Ireland’s past, including the House of Waterford Crystal, the award winning Medieval Museum, Bishop’s Palace and Reginald’s Tower.‌

Waterford glass blower

The House of Waterford Crystal provides a fascinating glimpse into the workings behind the famed glassworks that put the city on the international map. Consisting of a manufacturing facility and visitor center, it’s now one of the top attractions in Waterford and is best viewed as part of a guided tour that provides a close-up view of the process behind the finished pieces of cut glass.

Christ Church Cathedral, also referred to as the Cathedral of The Holy Trinity. This church is Waterford’s principal Protestant place of worship. Constructed in 1779 on a site known for a cathedral dating back to 1096, the Cathedral is a centerpiece of Waterford. It was on this spot in 1170, where the legendary Norman king, Strongbow, married Aoife, daughter of Diarmait Mac Murchada, King of Leinster, thereby forming a great alliance.

Reginald’s Tower is a historic round stronghold tower in Waterford. It is located at the eastern end of the city quay. The tower has been in use for different purposes for centuries and is an important landmark in Waterford and an important remnant of its medieval urban defense. It is the oldest civic building in Ireland and it is the only urban monument in Ireland to retain a Norse Viking name. Just outside, to the right of the tower entrance, is a 40 foot Viking Long Boat with a red sail named Vadrarfjordr – the Viking name for Waterford. This accurate Viking Longboat was built by a group of Waterford men. The keel and planks of the longboat are of Irish oak, mostly sourced from a mill in Carlow, and the sailcloth is a canvas weave. The Vadrarfjordr longboat is modeled on famous Viking ships found at Roskilde, in Denmark.

The Viking Triangle has lots craft studios, cafes and great places to eat and a real sense of history. Waterford’s motto is ‘Urbs Intacta Manet’, which means The Untaken City.

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