Cobh + Waterford Crystal Factory
Annie Moore statue outside the Heritage Centre
Heading for Dublin, we passed through Cork and got onto the motorway.
Our first stop was in Cobh, now a quiet and fairly sleepy town, but at
one time (when it was called Queenstown) a major port where cruise liners
used to stop and from which some two thirds of Irish emigrants departed.
This is the subject of the Heritage Centre, which has displays on
emigration, the Titanic, and related topics. There was also a litle
market on the waterfront, and some attractive buildings.
Waterford Crystal showroom
We continued to Waterford, where we got stuck in traffic on the way
in and didn't look around the town at all. Our goal was the Waterford
Crystal factory, where we fortunately didn't have too long to wait for
the factory tour. (None of us had any real interest in buying crystal,
and the showroom was more glitz than anything else, with a lot of
eye-catching but hardly practical items.)
The tour, however, was excellent, getting to see the different stages in
crystal production. Most of the work is still done by hand: the glass
melting, the blowing into a mould, the cutting, and the checking for
imperfections at every stage. Better photos than mine can be found
on the official tour page.
Then an easy drive on the motorway to Dublin, where we joined the traffic
until we found the car rental premises (with only a little wandering
around) and got rid of the car.