Limerick is based in the Midwest region of Ireland and is the third largest city in Southern Ireland. It is also referred to as the ‘Shannon Region' with regards to social and economic status as Limerick holds a high proportion of economic power, after Dublin and Cork. In earlier times, the city was recognised for its trade in meat packing and its dominating industries were flour production and confectionary. Limerick is also home to many large international companies such as Dell, who have their predominant European Manufacturing Facility here.
For a historical guide to the area, visitors can go to Lough Gur Visitor Centre which looks closely at the lives of pre-Celtic residents in Ireland who inhabited the valley over 5,000 years ago to present day. You are shown how these people conducted their daily routine through farming. The Visitor Centre has real pieces of the tools used by the farmers, which was found through archaeological research. There is also proof of rituals carried out in the location and burial sites existing 5,000 years ago.
For a more cultural experience of Limerick people can visit Belltable Arts Centre, a theatre, located in the heart of the city that offers a diverse range of shows from dance, theatre, music, to film comedy and many more exciting performances. The music shows are unconventional in their approach as performances are stripped of conventional features such as microphones and amplifiers. This enables an authentic acoustic sound for audiences and in turn, creates an intimate understanding between the artist and listeners.
Also based in the heart of the city is St. Mary's Cathedral, built in 1168. The building is in fact the oldest structure that is still in operation today within the city. It is believed that many aspects of the church in its original condition are present now, for instance, features like the West Door, which was historically the entrance to the palace that the church was previously apart of. This was also the central government premises when Limerick was a Medieval Viking city. The interior and exterior of the building has been changed significantly through generational modification.
For shopping, visitors can explore Crescent Shopping Centre, the second largest indoor shopping area in the country. It is home to many popular retailers including Zara, Accessorize, Gamestop, HMV, Mexx, Monsoon, River Island, Sally West, Tommy Hilfiger, Topshop, Vero Moda and many more high street and designer labels. Crescent Shopping centre also facilitates a multiplex cinema, restaurants and a car park with a capacity to hold 2,500 vehicles.
A place that is definitely worth a visit, if you are looking for picturesque landscapes is Boyce Gardens, a national award winning garden with beautiful views of the River Shannon. The name stems from the family name that have created, maintained and developed the garden for over 20 years. Here you will find a variety of flowers in various rooms, supplying vibrant colours that bloom throughout the year, some of which include rose, vegetable and meditation gardens. There is also a space for artists that wish to paint the scenic spectacle before them at the built in studio, where artists can relax in the tranquil environment surrounding them.
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