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All aboard for a new tour that reveals secrets of the city docks

DUBLINERS will have a chance to see the inner workings of the industrial port for the first time on a new boat tour.

The export trade is one of the only areas recording growth in the recession and now people can see the busy docklands and traffic volumes up close.

Dublin Port has teamed up with Sea Safari for the first tour of its kind in the capital as part of opening up the area to tourists and city dwellers.

The tour starts in the modern landscape of the Convention Centre, the international investment banks and the shell of a building that was meant to be Anglo Irish Bank HQ.

But beyond the pockmarked landscape of the recession, there is a hive of activity where the captains of industry are just getting on with the job.

CEO of Dublin Port Eamonn O'Reilly said:"The great maritime cities are all proud of their heritage and we've missed a trick at this point.

"Hopefully this tour will help to reverse it. We never really had an industrial revolution -- we suffered from that. But the modern vista is amazing."

Local man Jimmy Murray of Sea Safari has designed a tour to show the history of the Liffey area running down through the docks to the open mouth of Dublin Bay.

He said that there are sightings of the wildlife including birds, seals, fish alongside the industrial heritage and history of the area.

"We get to see a side of the city that they probably haven't seen before," said Mr Murray. "It is the ugly side of Dublin but it is the only way to see the real Dublin."

The boat speeds past the original diving bell -- a brilliant piece of engineering which was put in place to construct the walls of Dublin quays -- and right behind the rear side of the Poolbeg power station.

And a tribute to singing hero Ronnie Drew has been created by dockers at the port side and Guinness, Bord na Mona and Odlums are all shipping their produce from here.

The tour will run every day up to October and hopes to take between 150 to 200 people each day, spread out over five boats.

The service commences today, starting at 10am until 6pm.

Tickets cost €15.00 for adults, €12.50 for students/senior citizens and €10.00 for children.

clairemurphy@herald.ie


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