Lonely Planet Writer

New website allows James Joyce enthusiasts to feel part of Bloomsday

The annual Bloomsday Festival will take place this year on June 16th as always, and in anticipation of the event that draws tourists from all over the world, the James Joyce Tower and Museum in Sandycove, Co. Dublin, Ireland, has launched a new website.

The Forty Foot Bathing area in Sandycove with the James Joyce Museum Martello Tower
The Forty Foot Bathing area in Sandycove with the James Joyce Museum Martello Tower Image by Sinead McCarthy

Joyce Tower.ie features a slide show of gorgeous images of the Tower alongside quotes from the opening episode of Joyce’s most famous work Ulysses and is perfect for Joyceans who can’t make it to the Emerald Isle to celebrate the day.The Martello Tower in Sandycove is arguably the most iconic building in world literature, and certainly up there alongside Shakespeare’s Globe in London.

The bust of James Joyce St. Stephen's Green, Dublin. Image by Janet McKnight / CC BY 2.0
The bust of James Joyce St. Stephen’s Green, Dublin. Image by Janet McKnight / CC BY 2.0 Image by Janet McKnight / CC BY 2.0

Ulysses opens on the roof of the Tower with one of the most famous lines in literary history: “Stately, plump, Buck Mulligan came from the stairhead, bearing a bowl of lather on which a mirror and a razor lay crossed.” The Tower is the leading tourist attraction in Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown in South Dublin and welcomes over 35,000 visitors a year. Admission is free, and the museum is run by a vibrant volunteer group who are Joyce super-fans, and saved the Tower from closure in 2012. Martina Devlin wrote in the Irish Independent at the time: “Volunteers can’t solve all of Ireland’s problems, by any means, but there are areas where they can make a difference. This is one of them.”

The Bloomsday Festival 2016 will run from 11 June to  16 June and a full schedule of events is available on the site.