The city of Dublin has a long-standing history dating back to Viking times. It is believed that were two settlements, Dyflin a Viking group, and a Gaelic settlement, Ath Cliiath, who formed the foundation of the city of Dublin. Dublin has had many occupiers, from the Danes, the Norsemen, and the English. The city has seen many hardships; from medieval times of the Black Death (bubonic plague), to being conquered by the English in the 16th and 17th century, and then for the majority of the population there was the poverty years during the 18th century. By the 20th century, there was the uprising during the Easter Rising and taking back control from the British. And throughout Irish history, particularly Dublin’s, the tenacity of its people and vibrancy of the city still remains intact. There is no shortage of stories to be told here.
Unique Things to See and Do in Dublin
- Drink a whiskey at the Jamieson’s Distillery
- Photograph historic doorways on Henrietta Street
- Tour Oscar Wilde’s house
- Visit Dublin’s oldest microbrewery, the Porterhouse, (Oyster beer anyone?)
- Stroll through Temple Bar
- Check out the Spire on O’Connell street.
Places to Visit in Dublin
- Dublin Castle
- Christ Church Cathedral
- Guinness Storehouse
- Kilmainham Jail
- St.Mary’s Abbey
- Trinity College
Beer. Beer. And more beer. Oh! Food. Right. That helps with all the beer. Well for those who don’t drink a lot beer you’re in luck, because Irish cuisine is flavourful, hearty, and comforting- even without the beer.
Historically, after the 16th century and the introduction to potato farming, Ireland’s cuisine has taken on stew and potato cuisine culture. Prior to the potato, the main staples were beef, mutton, pork, poultry, and of course fish and shellfish. What most of us learn is school about Ireland and potatoes is the famine that struck in 1739, when a potato blight spread throughout the country and destroyed many crops. Over a million people died from that famine and another million emigrated.
Today, traditional Irish cuisine has remained strong and is commonly ate. Popular dishes are Irish stew, colcannon, boxty, bacon and cabbage, and blood sausage. Irish soda bread is another staple and unique to Ireland, as it is a bread made without salt.
No trip would be complete without a visit to Gallagher’s Boxty House. And for those who don’t know what a boxty is, it is a potato pancake. This place is a hot spot and revered for its Irish stew too, so plot this one on your itinerary.
Another Irish meal is Drisheen, which is an Irish blood sausage worth a try! Another poplar lunchtime meal is eating fish & chips.
Getting around Dublin
The best way to get around Dublin is to walk. Obviously, you’ll take in more sights, have fewer headaches with parking and traffic, but most of the tourist spots are within range of each other, and it’s the best way to meet locals. Plus it gives you the option of popping in local shops and pubs.
The Tram (Luas)
The tram is cheap and quick. There are two major lines, red and green, but they don’t connect. If you want switch lines there is a bit of walk between them. If you plan on using the Tram lines frequently or you are not staying in the heart of Dublin, you can pick up a pass for about 10 Euros.
This is a fantastic way to see Dublin’s coast line, especially on a sunny day. The Dart is a train that runs up the coast of Dublin all the way to Belfast.
This is the most common way to get around and it fairly cheap and easy too- although not always on time. The best for tourists is the hop on hop off bus. The bus stops at all the popular tourist destinations and for a flat rate you have access all day long. They have family rates too.
Did you know…?
That Dublin has the youngest population in Europe and that 50% of its population is less the 25 years old.
Did you ALSO know…?
The Brazen Head Pub is the oldest pub in Dublin, dating back to 1198.
Best time of year to travel to Dublin
The main tourist months are in the summer, July and August, so if you prefer the hustle and bustle of city life mixed in with high season tourism then this when the activities are in full bloom. The shoulder seasons, May and June, or September and October, are a little less busy, but the weather is still warm. The winter season is a bit trickier, especially if you are going to travel throughout the country, as many hotels and sightseeing activities close. In Dublin, the city is vibrant and staying here won’t be a problem, but the hours of some main attractions won’t be as long.
Weather in Dublin
The weather in Ireland is moderate. The average temperature in the summer is about 15°C to 22°C, whereas the shoulder seasons are anywhere from 3-10°C, and the winters average about 2- 5°C. The biggest consideration for bringing the appropriate clothing is to remember that Ireland isn’t called the emerald isle for nothing- it rains here. And almost every day, but averaging about 70% of the days. It can be bright and sunny in the morning and with the Atlantic winds blowing through you can be damp with rain by afternoon. So definitely take raincoat- one that can double as windbreaker too. Ireland on the whole is windy.
Ready to plan your visit to Dublin? Check out these popular guides and trips.