One of Ireland’s newest attractions, EPIC The Irish Emigration Museum has proven to be extremely popular with visitors, having welcomed 80,000 guests in its very first year. 40% of those who have visited so far have been from the US, with many Irish-Americans interested in learning more about their history.
Opened last May in the vaults of the Custom House Quarter building in Dublin’s Docklands, the original departure point for many of Ireland’s emigrants, the state-of-the-art interactive experience allows guests to learn more about the estimated ten million people that have left Ireland over the centuries, and the legacies that have been left behind. One of the most popular aspects of the museum is the family history centre, which allows visitors to trace their ancestry back through the centuries with the help of an onsite team of researchers and genealogists.
This year has even seen the museum welcoming heads of state, with Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau having recently visited, where he had his ancestry traced back to the 17th century.
“The first year has been extremely positive for us here at EPIC. We are blown away with the reaction from our visitors. People comment frequently on the use of the technology to present Irish history and culture in a stimulating way. For people with Irish Heritage it can be a very emotional journey as they discover the Ireland their ancestors may have left behind and their journey to their new world,” Aileesh Carew of The Irish Emigration Museum told Lonely Planet Travel News.
The museum features 20 galleries organised into the four themes of migration, motivation, influence and connection. It explores the influence of Irish people abroad in politics, science, business, sport and the arts, and how the technology of today has changed the emigrant experience.
EPIC was designed by the same company responsible for the hugely popular Titanic Belfast, with the museum being the single largest investment in a tourist attraction in Dublin in the last 15 years.
More information on visiting the Irish Emigration Museum is available at the official website.