A small capital with a huge reputation, Dublin is a multicultural, artistic city brimming with incredible architecture, beautiful green spaces and great opportunities for entertainment.
While traces of Ireland’s Viking past have been largely washed away, the city is a living museum of its history since then, with medieval castles and cathedrals on display alongside the architectural splendors of its 18th-century heyday. As an added bonus, Dubliners are the greatest hosts of all, a charismatic bunch with compelling soul and sociability.
Make the most of your visit to Dublin with these top things to do in and around the city.
1. Discover why Temple Bar is on everyone’s itinerary
Temple Bar, one of Dublin’s most famous areas, was burdened for years with a reputation for drunken debauchery and not much else. Visit these days and you’ll find a fun neighborhood with plenty to occupy your days as well as your nights. Its excellent, quirky boutiques appeal to fashionistas who head to Siopaella and Folkster for some unusual threads.
To indulge your cultural side, explore the fantastic street murals of the Icon Walk, or see a performance at the Project Arts Centre. Drinking in Temple Bar can be more expensive than other areas, but unusual venues like the Vintage Cocktail Club or a great pub like the Palace Bar are worth your time and money.
Planning tip: This area is also a haven for great food, both local and international. Temple Bar Food Market runs every Saturday and it’s easy to while away an hour or two there, sampling the delights.
2. Take a stroll through elegant Trinity College
Located in the heart of Dublin, Trinity College is Ireland’s most prestigious university and well worth a visit. Founded in 1592, it’s the alma mater of writers like Swift, Wilde and Beckett, and its 16 hectares are an oasis of aesthetic elegance. The biggest draw is the barrel-vaulted Long Room in the Old Library. It’s the home of one of Ireland’s greatest cultural treasures, the Book of Kells, the beautifully-illuminated Gospel manuscript that dates back to the 9th century.
Planning tip: Other attractions include the neo-Gothic Museum Building, home to the Zoological Museum (a top place to visit if you’re traveling with…