Tourist Tales: Dublin

This time last week I was swanning around Dublin playing at being a tourist, slightly different to today’s escapades, which so far has involved books, bed and the sofa. But hey variation is good! Having never been to Dublin before I wasn’t sure what to expect! I’d only heard good things but I don’t like to assume I’m going to agree with other people as often if reviews of a place or product are awesome I will be disappointed. I think it’s to do with building things up to epic proportions, which inevitably can never be met. Anyway, Dublin was absolutely amazing. It was such a brilliant city to spend a few days exploring. It’s a city that’s big enough for you to have lots to see and do but small enough that you feel you’ve got to know it and understand what it’s all about in just two days. It really was wonderful. As I mentioned on Twitter earlier on in the week I somehow managed to take 333 pictures whilst there, so yes plenty to see! It certainly helped though that the weather was glorious, the sun shone most of the time and the sky was the most spectacular blue on the Saturday. We really couldn’t have asked for better.

So what did we get up to I hear you say? Well let me explain interspersed with a few (trillion) photos! We arrived early evening on the Saturday and headed out for burgers and sweet potato fries – the perfect touristy meal in my book. We ate at this cool diner that had gumball machines, jukeboxes and other awesome things. The food was out-of-this-world and perfect after an hours flight and much book reading!

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Post Dinner saw us ambling south of the river and through Temple Bar to get our bearings. There was loads of brilliant classic Irish pubs that we were so tempted to pop into but sadly we had no time! There were also some brilliantly colourful and unusual doors on our wander, which I of course had to capture on camera – how cool are they! After meeting our third tourist we headed to a bar off of O’Connell Street (near our hotel) for some cocktails – delicious Apple Mojitos – some live Irish music and came up with a plan of action for the weekend. There’s nothing like last minute planning don’t you know!

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Saturday saw us up bright and early to make the most of our Dublin time and we were on-board our hop-on-hop-off bus by 9.30. We were obviously on the top desk and right at the back – prime spots! We then set off towards Trinity College and past all sorts of interesting places, including the Spire and The General Post Office. At Trinity College we headed straight to see the Book of Kells (can’t see I understand that at all!) and fortunately only had to queue for 30 minutes or so. thanks goodness we got up so early hey!

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As you can see from the sheer number of pictures I took in it, The Old Library at Trinity College was amazing and I loved it. It’s brilliant that it’s exactly how it was when first built, the books are gorgeous and the library has that awesome old book smell that I love! There are also some really interesting bits in the library, I loved the spiral staircase, all the busts of famous people and the perfectly aligned book shelves across two levels.

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After Trinity College we headed to the amazing PowersCourt building, it’s really lovely inside and full of so many amazing looking cafe’s and a really cute knitting shop. Sadly we timed it wrong so we didn’t eat there but by the look of the cakes in  the pepper pot cafe I will definitely going back! We also popped in to Avoca which was a really cool shop, I found loads I could buy too. Perhaps I’ll have to search online. We did of course also stop for a Starbucks, but alas still no correct spelling!

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Our next stop was Dublin Castle and the lovely peaceful police memorial garden, which was lovely. I loved the quite park in the shadow of the castle and the bright colourful buildings.

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Lunchtime saw us stopping off at Lemon Jelly, a cafe just north of the river for paninis and scrumptious smoothies. After lunch we wandered through the bookshops and over the Ha’Penny bridge, before grabbing the bus to go to St. Patrick’s Cathedral.

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St Patrick’s Cathedral is gorgeous, with the most beautiful tiles and stained glass.  As you can see I got a bit carried away with the picture taking. I just couldn’t help myself!

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WE finished up the bus tour by going through the amazing park, which is bigger than both Central PArk and Hyde Park – how crazy is that! It’s such a shame we ran out of time to have a proper explore of it. WE got dropped off the bus at the bottom of O’Connell Street which meant we could wander up past all the statues and get a closer look at the bullet holes in the General Post Office facade. Our last night in Dublin was at at a delicious Creole restaurant, with a crazy waitress and in the Quays bar listening to live music. Very Irish!

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Sunday started with the magic bus tour again, but this time we stopped off at the Guinness Factory, which was so much fun! You learn all about making Guinness as well as the history of the company, the marketing and you even get a free pint of Guinness that we were taught how to pour properly. It was so much fun! At the end you get to go up to the top of the factory and there’s a 360 degree view of the city, which was stunning on such a sunny day.

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Sadly after the Guinness factory we only had time for lunch before we had to head to the airport, but we had such an epic weekend and I’m officially in love with Dublin. It’s really an amazing city. If you’ve made it this far I implore you to go as soon as physically possible, you’ll have a blast and not regret it – I promise!

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