How I learned to love the slow route home to Ireland

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Journeys are about so much more than getting from A to B, as our writer found when he ditched flying for the train and ferry between Dublin and London

There’s always a moment in the journey from Dublin to London – which I make every month or two, taking the land-and-sea route via Holyhead instead of flying – when I stop what I’m doing – reading or writing or chatting to the person next to me – and think: you don’t get to enjoy this from 40,000ft.

Sometimes it’s at the Britannia Bridge in north Wales. As the train crosses the Menai Strait from Anglesey I can see, off to my right, a concrete statue of Lord Nelson keeping a lonely watch from the shore, and further upriver the grounds of Plas Newydd country house sweeping down to the water. To the left, on a tiny island with a curved jetty, stand two handsome whitewashed houses that will one day disappear beneath the rising sea levels but for now are holding out against the elements.

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