Dublin as the Capital of the republic of Ireland is a must visit city. The pub hopping culture on small cobble stone streets with strung green white and orange flags in lively alleys is something special. The old gothic brick cathedrals, castle and historic buildings are charming especially with the true friendliness of the locals. The hospitality of Ireland was heartwarming. The people were so charming and kind everywhere. I felt warmly welcomed and invited into the family as soon as I entered. Upon arriving in city center, you are immediately greeted by unending, picturesque, cobblestone streets. Dublin was a city alive and teeming with people, music, lights, and mist. This is also one of the most touristy cities in Ireland and so it is nice to stay for a day and then take a bus to Galway as a day trip.
How to get to downtown from Dublin Airport
The Dublin Airport has only 2 runways, and didn’t have 2 terminals until 2010. This is a small and easy airport to navigate. There are convenient buses into Dublin & other towns/cities running frequently from the airport. There is Airlink, Aircoach, the public bus and taxis from the airport to get to the city. The best budget and fastest trip into the city.
The Airlink is an express option that means very few stops on the way into downtown creating a faster trip. The Airlink goes from the airport to Dublin’s main bus station Busaras, then to O’Connell Street in the city centre and finally to Heuston, one of Dublin’s main train stations. 747 buses are frequent, departing every 15 or 20 minutes, from 5am to 11.30pm (11.20pm Sundays). The Airlink picks people up at the exit to Terminal 1, Arrivals level (above Departures). The bus trip takes around 30 minutes to get into the city center.
Cost: The Airlink costs €6 one-way for adults, €10 return. The child fare is €3 one-way, €5 return. Tickets can be bought online and using their app makes seeing their schedule and getting a ticket way easier. See the official website for price details
Things to Do
The Temple Bar
Come visit this famous bar for the amazing local Irish live music at night as well as Irish and international craft beer with Temple Bar’s only licensed garden. The place gets packed early so you need to come early in the evening to save a seat for the music show. I came in when it was so packed there wasn’t even a seat but was still an amazing show of the band I got to watch. Weekly there are over 20 Live Music Sessions in the afternoon and night-time. The full menu of food and drinks can be seen here.
The cost of Guiness is €5.95 (€4.45) for a regular pint or €6.50 (€4.95) for a late pint. The cost of a regular pint of Heineken is €6.85 (€4.45) or €7.45 (€4.95) for a large pint. Temple Bar is the most expensive in the area and is known for the best live music and is one of the number one visited pubs by tourists so keep this in mind for pricing. The cost comparison of Temple Bar and other pubs in the area are compared here.
Monday – Wednesday
10:30am – 1:30am
Thursday – Saturday
10:00am – 2:30am
11:30 – 1am
Read at Trinity College Dublin (Library)
Trinity College Dublin has a beautiful old historic campus with lots of architecture and are famous for their gorgeous library that is one of the most picturesque places in Dublin. This is a free thing to do in the heart of the city.
St. Patrick’s Cathedral
This is the Church of Ireland’s national cathedral, dating from 1220, with lunchtime musical recitals. This gorgeous gothic cathedral is a beautiful historical site to visit. Their full website and information can be found here.
€8.00 for an adult ticket. €7.00 for a student ticket. The family price for 2 adults and 2 children under 16 is €18.00. The group rate (min 10 people) is €7.00 for adults and €6.00 for students.
March-October: Mon-Fri 9:30-17:00, Sat 9am-6pm, Sun 9-10:30, 12:30-2:30, 4:30-6:00pm
November-February: Mon-Fri 9:30-5pm, Sat 9-5pm, Sun 9-10:30, 12:30-2:30pm
The Dublin Castle is a historic site, dating from 1204, with 2 museums, cafes and gardens, plus state rooms and a library. They have a nice cafe as well in the Castle that is a popular spot to eat to see the Castle. Their site and full information can be found here.
For a self guided tour through the prices are below. In order to have a guided tour you add 4 euros onto each price below.
Senior (60+) €6
Student (valid student ID required) €6
Child (12-17) €4
Family (max. 2 adults & 5 children) €20
Open: Monday – Sunday & Bank Holidays: 9:45 – 17:45 (last admission 17:15)
Closed: 25th, 26th & 27th December, and 1st January
This is a famous bridge crossing the Liffey river running through Dublin. It is a refurbished 19th-century cast-iron span & city symbol, crossed by thousands of pedestrians daily. The bridge leads over the river to Abbey Court Hostel where I stayed listed below. This is one of the key pedestrian bridges and is a charming picture in the city.
This is the other famous bridge crossing the river in Dublin. This one is not just pedestrian but cars as well. This bridge offers a great view of the city.
This is a brewery experience telling the tale of Ireland’s famous beer, with tastings and a rooftop bar. This is one of the most popular tourist attractions in all of Ireland. The interior is designed to look like a pint of Guiness and is the largest pint in the world. There is a tour through seven floors of Irish brewing history. You will learn about the Guinness family, as well as how stout beer is made to perfection. The end of the tour is the Gravity Bar on the 7th floor, where you get a pint of Guinness with a 360 degree view of the Dublin skyline included in your entry. Their site and information can be found here.
A ticket to the Guinness factory is roughly €18.
- The Guinness Storehouse® is open 7 days a week 9:30am – 7pm (last admission is at 5pm)
- Late opening during July and August
9am – 8pm (last admission is at 6pm)
- Open all year apart from Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, & St Stephens Day.
Tour Old Jameson Distillery
Guides tell the story of Jameson in a recreated distillery scene with tastings and dining. This location used to be the original site where Jameson whiskey was manufactured and distilled until it stopped production in the early 1970s. The tour describes the history and process of creating the refined whiskey, as well as a chance to take part in a comparative whiskey-tasting experience. You will be given a Whiskey Taster Certificate to certify your knowledge in traditional Irish whiskey. There are many other tours besides the whiskey tasting check here.
One adult ticket is 30euros for a whiskey tasting tour.
- Fully guided tasting by a Jameson Brand Ambassador
- Four premium whiskeys, two of which are exclusive to the distillery
- Access to John Jameson’s (JJ’s Office)
- 18 participants
- 40 mins duration
Take a Picture with the Spire of Dublin
Wander the charming historic streets of Temple Bar neighborhood
This is one of the coolest trendy neighborhoods downtown filled with great restaurants, stores and pubs through cobble stone streets and historic buildings. This is a walkable city and a great place to take in the atmosphere of Dublin.
Day trip to Galway the west coast of Ireland
Booking a Hostel
Abbey Court Hostel
This hostel offered an amazing free buffet breakfast with lots of fruit, oatmeal, toast, and drinks. You can really get your money’s worth by eating a big meal before your explorations. It is centrally and conveniently located on the O’ Connell bridge. This hostel is modern, colorful and creative, including a huge hammock hangout room. The Hugh lane train station is a 10 minute walk away, and the hostel sits a short walk from Trinity college and Dublin castle. There are mixed and female dorms ranging from 4-28 people with prices for all budgets. This place is one of the cheapest most friendly hostels with amazing food I have stayed at in Europe.
The dorm rooms average €13 a night, BOOK HERE