A charming city full of music, history and spirit(s).
The capital of Ireland, Dublin is a buzzing city of Irish tradition mixed with modern metropolis. Full of things to see and experience, this city offers a unique taste of the Irish way of life.
PLACES TO GO:
While in Dublin for only a few days, I truly enjoyed walking around the city. My highlights included seeing the Book of Kells at Trinity College, Christ Church (don't forget to go into the basement/cavern!!), my tours with Guinness & Jameson, and enjoying live music at the pubs.
Trinity college is free to go to, but to access the Book of Kells museum you have to go into the giftshop and pay the desk to access this neat, quaint museum.
Christ Church is also not free to access, but it's a gorgeous church and the cavern beneath it is truly a treat.
GET IN THE SPIRIT(s):
Drinking in Dublin is such a part of the culture, it's a crime not to partake. The week I was in Dublin I was fortunate enough to be there during the Tradfest (a music festival), so at night every pub we went to featured live acts while we sipped on Guinness and Smithwicks (my favorite beer in Ireland). In addition to the pubs, Dublin is home to two very famous spirits: Guinness and Jameson.
Guinness Factory: The factory tour is self-guided with the exception of the intro given at the base of the giant Guinness glass. The tour is interactive and informative, it takes you through the entire process of making of Guinness and the history of the brand (and the innovative marketing involved in it). After you do the tour and make your way up the glass, you are faced with the option of taking a free glass of Guinness in the Guinness Academy or at the top of the glass, we did the Guinness Academy and I learned how to do the perfect Guinness pour (and I received a certificate, horray for acadamia). After the academy, make your way up to the top to enjoy breathtaking 360 views of Dublin.
**Make sure you get the tickets BEFOREHAND, they are good for a year and you can use them at any time. There were two lines when I was there, the one that moved was the one with the preprinted tickets, print your tickets before and you'll save an hour of waiting, you're welcome.
Jameson Tour: Although the Dublin location no longer makes Jameson there, it serves as an informative tour that really educates those of us who don't know much about Whiskey (me). However, theres a bar at the entrance with fun Jameson cocktails that certainly get you in the mood for the tour.
**These tickets had to be prebooked with a specific time, because they sell out quickly at location.
The city of Dublin is home to many pubs, however there is one called the Brazen Head that is credited with being the oldest pub in Ireland! This of course I had to check out and I am glad I did, check the schedule for when the locals get together and play the Irish folk music. Enjoying soup and a pint while listening to these men play was my favorite way to spend the afternoon. Another pub that had live music was the Porterhouse Temple bar, although much grander in size, the band is featured in a pit in the middle of the bar and is very enjoyable (check schedule for when the bands are playing). The most famous of these pubs is The Temple Bar. Overpriced and always packed, The Temple Bar typically has live music and is chock full of international patrons. In general the Temple Bar street is full of tourists and can be a lively and fun pub crawl.
OVERALL, Dublin was a perfect city to enjoy a three day weekend. Full of character I loved taking walks around the city and immersing myself in their culture. A fun trip, Dublin has enough things to see, but more things to enjoy with friends.
Pub Culture: Irish Folk Music, Great Pints and Spirits
Sights: Christ Church, Book of Kells
'Spirit'ual Tours: Guinness Factory, Jameson Distillery