This is the seventh post in my Travel Tips series where I provide travel tips for specific city destinations. My Travel Tips guides aim to give you some of my top tips for exploring a new place and hopefully help you to save a bit of money, maximize your sightseeing time and find the most convenient ways to get around. You can find posts in this series under Destinations – Travel Tips in the menu bar. Today I’m featuring lovely Dublin, the capital of Ireland!
Travel Tips: Dublin
Food & Drink
- Try some classic Irish foods when you’re in Dublin: Irish stew, beef stew, Dublin coddle (a local specialty made with pork sausage, bacon, and potatoes), Irish coffee, Guinness, boxty (a type of Irish pancake) – yum!
- I’m not a whiskey fan, but if you are, Dublin is a great place to learn more about it. You can take a tour at the Irish Whiskey Museum or the Old Jameson Distillery (reopening in March 2017).
- Though it’s actually an English tradition, there are several lovely spots where you can enjoy Afternoon Tea in Dublin. We went to The Atrium Lounge at the Westin Dublin and thoroughly enjoyed their traditional afternoon tea. Other popular tea spots include The Westbury, Ariel House, The Merrion Hotel, and The Shelbourne Hotel. Vintage Tea Tours (where you can enjoy afternoon tea and 1950s jazz music on a mobile bus!) also looked like a lot of fun, but unfortunately they weren’t running tours when we were in Dublin in January.
- If you want an introduction to modern and traditional Irish food while in Dublin, consider taking a food tour. My Mom and I really enjoyed our restaurant crawl with Irish Food Trail where we got the low down on the best foods, restaurants, and pubs in the city.
- There are several ways to get from Dublin Airport into the city. The public Dublin Bus (such as the 16 to Ballinteer, the 41 to Lower Abbey Street, or the 102 to Sutton Station) or Airlink express bus are the most convenient and cheapest options. The public bus journey takes about 1 hour and the Airlink journey takes about 45 minutes (depending on traffic). I ended up taking a taxi when I arrived in Dublin late at night and it cost about 25 Euros and took about 20-25 minutes. Try to establish the fare with the taxi driver beforehand to avoid getting ripped off; I asked and got a lecture for the first 15 minutes of the ride…just FYI.
- We actually didn’t take the bus or train any time while we were in Dublin – the city is extremely walkable. Grab a map at the airport when you arrive or ask for a free one from your hotel; we used ours a lot when exploring the city. For more transportation info, visit the Dublin website.
- There are quite a few excellent museums in Dublin, such as the National Gallery, Irish Museum of Modern Art, Chester Beatty Library, Kilmainham Gaol, Irish Whiskey Museum, National Museum of Ireland – Archaeology, and more. Admission is often free so museums in Dublin are a great low cost sightseeing option.
My Top Activity Recommendations
- There are so many things you can do in Dublin all year round. Popular tourist attractions include the Guinness Storehouse, Dublin Castle, Temple Bar, Trinity College, St. Patrick’s Cathedral, and more. Check out my Dublin Sightseeing Guide for more ideas.
- Take a free guided walking tour to see a lot of the city in a short period of time. We really enjoyed our Free Tour of Dublin with Sandeman’s New Europe which focused on not only key sights in the city, but also a lot about the history and culture of Dublin, Ireland, and the Irish people.
- Learn to pour the perfect pint of Guinness at the Guinness Storehouse, see the famous Georgian doors around Merrion Square, ogle books in the Trinity College Long Room Library, listen to Irish music at a local pub, and snap photos of colourful and lively Temple Bar. There’s so much to see and do in Dublin!
For ideas on what to see and do, where to eat, what events are on, etc., check out the Visit Dublin website.
What are your top Dublin travel tips? Don’t be shy – I’d love to hear in the comments below!