21 May 2020
Hollywood actor Matt Damon, in lockdown in the south Dublin suburb of Dalkey, has described the seaside village and surroundings as being ‘like a fairytale’.
Considered to be one of Ireland’s most picturesque villages, medieval Dalkey snuggles against a backdrop of lush green hills overlooking the Irish Sea.
Always a draw for visitors who love its heritage and charm and already home to some of Ireland’s A-listers including Enya, U2’s Bono and The Edge, and director Neil Jordan, the village has found itself back in the spotlight as the lockdown home of Matt Damon and his family.
The Hollywood star had come to the area in March to shoot The Last Duel, just a week before the country went into lockdown because of the Coronavirus crisis. For most of the time since, he has been unable to move more than 2km from his luxury house, as Irish guidelines demanded.
However, in an exclusive interview with local radio station Spin 103.8, Damon said he was enjoying his time in Dalkey, describing it as incredible.
“This is one of the most beautiful places we've ever been. It's absolutely gorgeous. Even within 2km, we've got trees, and woods and ocean. I can't think of any place you'd rather be in a 2km radius of," he said.
The star has been seen taking advantage of the beautiful area to exercise. He was caught on camera coming back from a swim in the sea, carrying his towels in a SuperValu (local supermarket) bag, which endeared him to the locals who said it was ‘such an Irish thing to do’.
Dalkey Village, County Dublin
He has also been spotted on Killiney Hill, a popular hiking and abseiling spot near Dalkey. At the summit of the hill there is a small stone pyramid known locally as the Wishing Stone, from where panoramic views of Dublin Bay can be enjoyed.
“It’s gorgeous and now it’s blooming, it’s incredible, a little like a fairytale,” said Damon.
Dalkey has welcomed many big names over the years including Woody Harrelson, Michelle Obama and Penelope Cruz, drawn by the charm and relaxed character of the village, and the privacy it affords.
The village has a rich heritage, having been Dublin’s main harbour in the Middle Ages. In normal times it can be discovered on a guided tour of Dalkey Castle and Heritage Centre and a trip out to Dalkey Island is also possible. Just five minutes by boat from Coliemore Harbour, it’s a great place to enjoy lovely views of the bay, compared by some to the Bay of Naples.
With Ireland’s lockdown tentatively beginning to ease, Dalkey will be hoping that Matt Damon will soon be able to enjoy everything the village has to offer, which must include a pint in one of the cosy local pubs.
Dalkey Castle, County Dublin
Dalkey Coliemore Harbour, County Dublin
Killiney Coast, County Dublin
A view from Killiney Hill, County Dublin
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