Dublin has it all

10 October 2013

When thinking of the Republic of Ireland, one colour instantly comes to mind and it’s not just because of St Patrick’s Day celebrations, green face paint, four leaf clovers and leprechaun clothes; it’s the fact that Ireland is actually very green (mostly thanks to high levels of precipitation most of the year). Even in the capital city, Dublin, you will see green just about anywhere you look; in the parks, in the university grounds, on sign posts and along the tree-lined suburban streets. Dublin is an attractive city and definitely worth a proper visit.  

Just like any world city, Ireland’s capital can be pretty much what you want it to be. There is something here for everyone.  Art, theatre, a thriving music scene, alluring architecture and a fine choice of museums will make even the most cultured of tourists satisfied.
And nearly all of these attractions are within walking distance of each other which is lucky because this is not a cheap place to visit.

A walk through the grounds of Trinity College will take visitors back in time to the 18th century when the Old Library building was constructed. This magnificent building houses the Book of Kells, a gospel manuscript dating back to the ninth century.

Malahide Castle in Dublin, Ireland Malahide Castle in Dublin, Ireland

St Patrick’s cathedral, named after the patron saint of Ireland, is the largest church in the country. It is also said to be the earliest Christian site. Although quite a walk from the city centre, it is a worthwhile effort especially if you are a literature lover.Jonathan Swift (of “Gulliver’s Travels” fame) was dean here and is buried in the cathedral.  Don’t miss out on Dublin Castle, the building which has been witness to hundreds of years of Irish history.

Phoenix Park is one of the largest urban parks in Europe and is perfect for a long, lazy walk. You might spot some fallow deer too.  No trip to Dublin is complete without a visit to the Guinness Storehouse.

After walking through floors of history and the interesting facts about production of this world-famous drink, a free pint of the good stuff is waiting for you in the Gravity Bar on the top floor. Great views and Guinness, does it get much better?

The Temple Bar area is great for a tour in the day time. But it is at night when these cobbled streets truly come alive. Even in ever-evolving Dublin, this area has kept its medieval feel. Be warned, it can get taken over by wild tourists in the evening brandishing green face paint. But hey, that might be right up your alley!

Of course, you just must see the popular tourist attractions mentioned above but also don’t forget to wander of the beaten path, explore down a side street, amble through the public parks and gardens, catch one of the many plays and shows or take a little extra time at a museum.Don’t forget to just relax, sit at a pub or on the Liffey Boardwalk, sip on a pint of Guinness (or whatever it is you’d prefer) and enjoy the electric atmosphere that is one of the most exciting business and cultural cities in the world.Go on, go green!

Philippa Francis

Over the last few years, I have fallen in love with travel and I am not sure I will be able to stop, except for my other great love; writing. After studying journalism at Rhodes and Stellenbosch Universities, I wanted to get a taste of the bigger world. I have worked all sorts of jobs and I have saved. I have ‘bused’ around Europe and backpacked around south-east Asia. I have seen magical sights and met wonderful people from all walks of life.