Today, I start a new category on this blog: the “travel guides”. Since my boyfriend and I met in 2018, I started travelling quite often (he has been fond of traveling for years and has made me his travel buddy… for my greatest pleasure!) Today, I want to share with you our travel to Dublin a while ago as well as our day trip with the company Irish-Day-Tours.
In this post, I will share with you pictures taken on this trip, the places we enjoyed visiting and our favorite places to eat. I hope it will give you a few ideas for your future trip to Dublin!
Day one: Quick food, drinking Guinness and visiting Smithfield
Our hotel was located in the Smithfield area, so that is naturally where we spent our very first day. Smithfield is located near from almost every important places in Dublin, and within a ten minutes walk from the famous Temple Bar. In this area, one can find Dublin’s street life: restaurants, bars, coffee shops, souvenirs and everything; it is THE touristic place.
We started looking for food and found the Fresh, the Good Food Market within two minutes from our hotel (the Hendricks) : this place is a mix between fresh food and a regular épicerie. There, we bought little potatoes (Ireland being so famous for its potatoes) to eat while walking along the streets of Smithfield. I definitely recommend!
Then, it was time for a little apéro as we say in France. Ireland is known for its Guinness (a very light beer) so we entered an Irish pub and… wow. The ambience was so good, there were singers, loud music and laughs. I must say the Irish people we met were ALL very welcoming and warm. It was the first time I tased Guinness and damned… I was so impressed!
Before dinner, we took a long walk around Temple Bar and Smithfield: what struck be the most was the red brick everywhere. I love the indus look and think it is so cool (I actually have some in my kitchen by the way) and we found the streets were absolutely stunning!
Day two: The Guinness Storehouse
On our second day in Dublin, we decided to visit the Guinness Storehouse, which is the museum dedicated to the beer Guinness. My boyfriend being a connoisseur when it comes to beer and its history, we could not miss this spot! I must say it was absolutely wonderful: we learnt a lot about the fabrication of the beer and the reasons why it has this taste so close to (my beloved) coffee. Here are a few pictures for you to get an idea of the place, that I would definitely recommend visiting!
Day three: Eating vegetarian food and visiting Trinity college
Third day in Dublin. The day before, Sam had seen the museum and on that day, it was my turn to see THE place: I mean, the Trinity College. As every bookworm studying literature in college, I had been wondering what this university which had seen so many writers pass its gates looked like. After a quick drive in taxi (How cool is it to be able to talk with taxi drivers about the way they see their city and country!), we arrived in front of those (big) gates. We went for a guided visit of the university as well as a ticket for the wonderful library in which is placed the magnificent Book of Kells (can you imagine how happy I was, being just in front this wonderful manuscript?) The university is wonderful, as well as its history. If you have two hours to spend in Dublin, I think you definitely should go to Trinity College, as it is one of most wonderful places to see, if not THE must-see in my eyes.
After our (long) visit, we were definitely hungry. We decided to go back to our hotel on Smithfield as we heard of a restaurant named The Woof that seemed very good. We entered and… wow! I must say it has been my favorite restaurant in Dublin. Vegan and vegetarian food are the specialties, and I must say it is beyond good. Bonus: it is totally affordable, especially for a city like Dublin.
Day four: Visiting Grafton Street, going to the cinema and eating (lots of) Italian food
We were really tired after these three days, so we decided to take a “rest day” while enjoying our trip. That is why we woke up naturally when our bodies decided that it was time for us to move
(understand: late), and went to the Italian restaurant next to our hotel (this hotel is so well-located, near from several restaurant and lots of touristic places). To be honest, I would not have bet much on this restaurant but the food was actually wonderful!
We spent the rest of the day walking in the streets of Dublin, especially in Grafton Street as we had been told in was THE touristic street. However, minimalist as we are, we did not find anything special to buy but it was still very fun to be part of Dublin’s city life.
At night, we decided to go to the cinema and watched Once Upon a Time in Hollywood by Tarantino : it was great! It was the first time Sam watched a movie in English in a movie theater, which I find so cute and I am so happy we have done it together. When it comes to me, it was the very first time I did it abroad! After the movie (which we enjoyed much), we went to another restaurant to eat… pizza this time, maybe our favorite dish of all times!
Day five: A day trip to Northern Ireland with Irish-Day-Tours
When we decided to visit Dublin, we did not think at all we would have the opportunity to visit Northern Ireland. However, after a few days in Dublin, Sam saw a flyer by Irish-Day-Tours next to the elevator of the hotel. This company offers day trips from Dublin to several must-see places in Ireland for less than 100 – 65 euros for the Giant’s Causeway). After some hesitation, we decided to go for Northern Ireland, the Giant’s Causeway especially. The day after, we were gone! After four hours driving through Ireland with an awesome guide, we arrived at the CARRICK-A-REDE ROPE BRIDGE, which was the first place we visited on that trip. The view was absolutely awesome, the water so blue and the rope bridge… very scary, but anyway! It was really worth crossing this bridge because the view was breathtaking (as you can see on the pictures below).
Then, we stopped in an inn for lunch, and went back to the bus. In less than thirty minutes, we were at the Causeway. The legend tells that this causeway is the result of a disagreement between two giants, one from Scotland, the other from Northern Ireland. I will not go into details here, but you can find more infirmation over there. The Giant’s Causeway is as beautiful as people say, even though, as every worldly-known place, really crowded. That is the only thing I would reproach to this place, even though we both enjoyed spending time there very much.
After the visit, we spent around an hour in Belfast, where we visited a really beautiful book-shop and enjoyed a cup of coffee. When we came back to Dublin at night, we went one last time to The Woof Restaurant, and went back to France the following day.
It was a wonderful (yes, this same word again) trip that I highly recommend to anyone interested in the Gaelic culture. Having studied Irish civilization this semester, I must say this trip helped me understand the concepts as Ireland is one of these countries, the history of which is still visible today.
Hoping I had you dream a little,