Ireland’s capital and biggest city has a reputation as one of the best tourist destinations in Europe, if not the world. Dublin is a lot smaller than other major capital cities, but don’t let that fool you – there are so many places to eat, explore and be entertained. There are also activities for literally every taste and plenty of sights rich in culture, history and – naturally – alcohol. Making sure you get the most out of the city, either as a resident or visitor, is made a bit easier with this handy guide to help you get out and see a different side to the Fair City.
1. Hurling and Gaelic football
There aren’t many countries around the world that have their own specialised sports that regularly draw crowds to rival Camp Nou and Wembley Stadium, but hurling and Gaelic football are contact sports steeped in rich history, fierce rivalries and die-hard fans. Fast, rough and extremely exciting to watch.
Both sports are easy to find in the city, with hurling played in summer and autumn and football played throughout the autumn, winter and spring. Croke Park is the place to see international and top-level games, with a crowd that can reach 82,300 for big games.
2. Guinness Storehouse
Possibly the most exported alcoholic drink in the world and the only thing to drink on St Patrick’s Day (WalletHub reckon of Guinness are drank on Paddy’s day in the US alone) the black stuff comes from Dublin and is celebrated with a purpose-built visitor attraction at the historic production site, St. James’ Gate. Tourists can learn more about the history of Guinness and even enjoy a few pints in the on-site bar, before heading back to the city centre for another two or three, four or five.
3. Temple Bar
The city’s hub when it comes to nightlife, Temple Bar is one of the in the world. Fuelled by, you guessed it, pints of Guinness (other drinks are available) traditional Irish folk music and a great mix of locals and tourists from around the world, you’ll struggle to find a location with as much going on when the sun goes down as you will in Temple Bar. Although busy every night of the week, Fridays and Saturdays are particularly busy with restrictions on entry when bars get too full. By day, you’ll find rare records and tasty cheeses at its colourful markets. It’s a good idea to sample a boxty (an Irish potato cake) as they’re absolutely delicious. The buskers are also top quality, complementing the street artists to create a heady, cultural experience.
4. Fitzwilliam Casino
Located right in the city centre and a short taxi ride from the bright lights of Temple Bar. With a whole host of table games, slot machines and a great choice of bars and restaurants (yes, they serve Guinness), you can enjoy some relaxed gaming with free membership and late opening hours. Poker and Blackjack are the games of choice at the Fitzwilliam, a guide written by Henry Tamburin, the renowned gambling author, will leave you with the best possible chance of success and a clear understanding of .
5. Kilmainham Gaol
A trip to what used to Ireland’s most notorious prisons may not seem like the best cure for a hangover or late night at the casino, but you’ll be pleased you went with so many fascinating stories from Ireland’s harder times. Preserved as it was left in the early 1950s, the prison is famous as the location where the were held and executed by the British in 1916.
Dublin is one of the best cities to visit in the world. It’s got everything – from memorable pubs, to eclectic architecture and intriguing museums. With so much to see and do in Dublin, you don’t have to spend the entire weekend drinking Guinness and having some craic with the locals (although we know how much you want to). Even a walk along the Liffey and across the Ha’Penny Bridge or a trip up to O’Connell Street to see the bullet holes in the post office or the shiny spire will help you to enjoy what Dublin has to offer outside of the walls of the pub!