Just a few days ago, we were driving down a tiny country road here in Ireland, when we suddenly came upon all kinds of traffic. We were mystified until we came around a bend: the town was hosting horse races. Clearly people were headed to the track from miles around in a steady stream of cars and trailers. Ireland has a long history of horse racing, and with racing comes the big business of breeding. So, my visit to the Irish National Stud seemed particularly appropriate.
With more than a century of history, the Irish National Stud is now charged with preserving Ireland’s legacy of fine thoroughbreds, which, of course, involves a lot of horse sex. Now, let’s be clear here: this is a breeding facility. And in thoroughbred horse racing, artificial insemination is illegal. In fact, when a stallion “covers” a mare at the Irish National Stud, it is observed by a wide range of people, documented, and photographed – all in, what our charming guide called “the honeymoon suite.”
- Location: about an hour out of Dublin in Kildare
- Price (as of June, 2009): Adult €11.00 per person; Students & Seniors €8.00 per person; Children under 16 years €6.00; Family - 2 Adults & 4 children under 16 years €27.00
- Who will love it? Anyone who loves horses. If you choose to take the guided tour, be sure your children have a rudimentary understanding of mating or you will have a lot of questions in the end.
- Notes: wear good walking shoes
Irish National Stud
Happy Father's Day to you all! I hope you are well-celebrated.