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If you’re looking for a unique city full of life, history and fun, then Dublin is the place for you. Having spent New Years Eve in Dublin, I can promise you that Ireland is definitely a place you want to add to your bucket list!
Ireland is known for its green rolling hills, whiskey and beer and potatoes, but there is so much more to this small country. The Irish are friendly and curious and will help you feel welcomed within minutes. While in the city you can discover the history of how Ireland became an independent country from Great Britain or learn why Guinness is not only a delicious beer but a family legacy.
In this post I’m going to take you through some highlights of my time in Dublin and share some tips to help make your experience while there even better.
Places to see
The first thing I’d suggest while visiting Dublin is to go on a walking or bus tour. The city is full of culture and history and I think the best way to start out a trip is by taking a local tour. On the tour they’ll share some of the major landmarks, best museums and popular places to eat or drink while there.
After the tour, you can decide for yourself what you want to go back to see, or visit different places that may not have been highlighted. We started our trip at Trinity college. Trinity is one of the oldest universities in Ireland and has a gorgeous campus full of cobblestone roads and incredible architecture. Trinity may be best known for their library which holds the Book of Kells, a manuscript of the New Testament from 800 AD. There is a small fee to get in, and around holidays it is not open.
Other places that are worth seeing are: Pheonix Park, the National Gallery of Ireland, Saint Patrick’s Cathedral, Grafton Street and more. You’ll definitely want to do a little research and make a list of places you’d like to see if you’re only there for a short time.
One of my favorite parts of Dublin was visiting the Guinness Storehouse. It is nothing like a typical brewery tour, but instead takes you through seven floors of Guinness history, developments, creation, marketing, tastings and more.
In Ireland, Guinness is known as more than just a delicious beer. Arthur Guinness was not only an incredible brewer but also a generous philanthropist. Arthur and his family helped restore Saint Patrick’s Cathedral, and also helped establish low-income housing. They also put an incredible 9,000-year lease on the Guinness Storehouse to ensure that their legacy would live on for centuries.
I was blown away by how incredibly interactive the Storehouse was. On each floor there was an array of videos, lighting effects, sounds and sensory activities. My favorite floors were probably the marketing and advertising floor, and the gravity bar which overlooked the entire city of Dublin.
The cost is entirely worth it and it even includes a pint of Guinness which you can use to learn to pour the perfect pint, then head up to one of the many bars and recieve a variety of Guinness beers. Head over here for tickets or more information.
Dublin’s nightlife has everything from traditional Irish music to famous tourist bars like Temple Bar. And the Irish know how to have a good time. While there you may even see a stag or hen party, which are their equivalent of bachelor and bachelorette parties.
Prior to going, many of my friends suggested I check out the Temple Bar district which holds, of course, Temple Bar, but also a variety of other pubs, bars and restaurants. One of my favorite things about Dublin’s nightlife was the live music one could find in almost every pub.
Dublin itself is also not too big of a city and so it is very manageable to walk everywhere or, if it gets pretty late, taxis are not that expensive and pretty easy to flag down.
Where to stay
If you’re between the ages of 18-26 then I highly suggest you stay in the Generator hostel. The Generator was one of the best hostels I’ve ever stayed in. They had comfy beds, nice bathrooms and to top it off they had a bar and cafe downstairs which was some of the locals favorite place to party. They even give you discounts to tour the Jameson Distillery.
Dublin truly is an incredible city that I think should be added to everyone’s bucket list. The only other thing that I’ll have to go back to do is visit the Cliffs of Moher. Since we were only there for three days, I wasn’t able to take a tour from Dublin to Moher, but I know it is something I’ll do in the near future.
Here’s a short list of all the places I think are worth checking out!
- Trinity College
- Pheonix Park
- Guinness Factory
- Saint Patrick’s Cathedral
- The Irish Whiskey Museum
- The National Gallery of Ireland
- Temple Bar District
- Brazen Head – one of the oldest pubs in Ireland
Hope you enjoy this post and let me know if there’s any of your favorites from Dublin that I left out. Also big thanks to EF Ultimate Break for this wonderful trip!