The Landscape of Howth

Dublin has one of the most spectacular settings of any European capital. Howth is arguably the brightest jewel in that setting. Its beauty has been celebrated by travellers and artists over the centuries, including St. Colmcille, Walter Osborne, William Orpen, Robert Lloyd Praeger and H.G. Wells. Distant sea views,large skies and heathland above sea cliffs are the characteristic landscape elements of the peninsula.

The area has two defining landmarks; on the south side of the head the grass-topped Baily promontory jutting into the broad sweep of Dublin Bay and, on the north side, the craggy profile of Ireland's Eye. Inland the heath-covered hills of Shielmartin, Carrickbrack and the Ben give panoramic views southwards over the Bay to the Wicklow Mountains. From Muck Rock, Dun Hill and Kilrock there are impressive vistas northwards of the interplay of land and sea created by the islands and estuaries of the Fingal coastline.

A different type of view, but one just as impressive, is the vista of the city from Shielmartin and Dun Hill.
The city stretches to the horizon on the other side of the Sutton isthmus. The broken terrain of the peninsula harbours a variety of landscapes. These include farmland near Redrock, woodlands at Howth Demesne Middle Mountain, the narrow streets of Howth village, the country lanes of Ceanchor, Windgate and the Old Carrickbrack Roads, heathland valleys and hollows on the Ben of Howth, pastures and abandoned cottages near Cannon Rock and sea crags on Ireland's Eye and around Howth Head.

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