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Letterkenny Accommodation - Derry - The Walled City

Few places in Ireland can offer such a compelling and unique experience for the visitor as the Walled City of Derry - often referred to as the Maiden City.  Its wonderful setting on the steep hills overlooking the wide sweep of the River Foyle, its distinctive architecture and its famous walls all provide enormous appeal.

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Add to this a turbulent history - evidence of which runs from the very earliest times right up to the recent past – and all of this adds up to a story that is interesting, relevant and substantial.

The first name for this ancient city was  Doire Cholm Chille, meaning Oak Wood of Colm Cille. Oak wood is still an apt description as there are sturdy oak trees scattered across the city to this day.

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It’s an old city with a young heart. Derry population is one of the youngest in Europe: sixty per cent of city dwellers are under thirty-nine. This youthful profile gives the place optimism and enthusiasm which is evident by the thriving creative arts and music scene.

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Derry has an industrial, rugged and scarred cityscape indicative of its querulous past. The city can trace its roots back 1,450 years to the days of the early Christian church in Ireland. It’s a small compact city and easy to walk around. There are great walking opportunities along the river, around the walls and up the steep streets which lead to The Diamond, where Austin’s, on the corner, is the world’s oldest department store. From the walls, the visitor can view the distant past and witness the forward looking present.

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The city acknowledges its tumultuous past with exhibitions and re-enactments of painful episodes but prefers now to walk forward, bringing all its conflicting interests together.

To get an overview of the city’s history and evolution, a visit to the Tower Museum is highly recommended. The Story of Derry is recounted in this Museum. This permanent exhibition is the city’s journey through many centuries from its geological origins through its Christian, maritime, emigration, economic experiences -  and more recent vociferous political events. An Armada Shipwreck: La Trinidad Valencera is another permanent exhibition presenting a collection of objects salvaged from La Trinidid Valancera which sank off the Donegal coast in 1588.

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