Dublin is a city with contagious energy, full of cheerful and exuberant people, and it’s been on my bucket list for some time.

I spent three days in Dublin, enough to convince myself that it’s one of the most beautiful cities in Europe. Maybe it doesn’t have the charm of Paris, London, Amsterdam, or Vienna, but it certainly has something special. Its inhabitants were strong enough to overcome the successive invasions of Vikings and Normans, get over denominational battles, a devastating famine and massive waves of emigration. Someone I met there told me: “Lose some, win some.”

It seems that the Irish kept the best from every experience.

Did you know that all pubs are closed after 11 PM? That after 10 PM no one is allowed to sell alcoholic drinks? Talk with an Irishman and he’ll tell you to drink three beers per day. But pubs do not sell beer before 10.30 AM! In this way locals are not tempted to drink alcohol before going to work and so their employers do not have to deal with low productivity.

Three Days in Dublin

On the first day spent in Dublin I had the chance to admire the Irish Sea. The sea offers locals a large beach during daytime that gets flooded in the evening. A fantastic phenomenon! Then I went in the Northern part of the city where you can relax by walking on the famous O’Connell Street and admire the Post building which has a special value for locals because it was the headquarter of nationalists during one of the attempts of liberation from British sovereignty.

Suspended bus on O’Connell Street

Suspended bus on O’Connell Street

The second day was reserved for the Southern part of the city that hosts numerous tourist attractions. You can start the walk from Christ Church, a neo-Gothic cathedral where you can find a stuffed version of Tom&Jerry (discovered inside the building). Not far from here is another famous cathedral that’s dedicated to Saint Patrick. A walk in the most beautiful park, St. Stephen’s Green, is the ideal way to end your day. Anyway, don’t miss visiting the Lenster House and Trinity College which are just a few minutes walk from here. The library inside Trinity College has over 4.5 million titles.

St. Patrick’s Cathedral – Ireland’s largest church

St. Patrick’s Cathedral – Ireland’s largest church

On the third day, I learned the secrets of two of the most successful drinks that are representative for this beautiful country. If you like chaos, crowds and beer, you’ll love the Guinness Storehouse. There you will find the history of the most famous Irish beer. The Guinness Storehouse is an interactive museum located in Dublin city center. Gravity Bar located at the 7th floor of the building will provide you with a magnificent view over Dublin. Enjoy a glass of beer offered by the hosts and admire the mind-blowing landscape.

If you love whisky then don’t miss visiting the Jameson distillery. Just to give you a tip: when your guide comes and says that he needs a few volunteers, don’t be afraid to raise your hand. He needs volunteers for a professional whisky tasting!

The Jameson Distillery

The Jameson Distillery

Eating in Dublin

Visiting Ireland, even if only for a few days, will leave an intense impression to those who do not expect to find so much joy in the northwest end of Europe. But what do you do when you wake up hungry in this lively city?

The Irish cuisine is not as complex as other European cuisines. It closely resembles the British cuisine. Get ready to start your day with fried sausages, a fried egg, a thick slice of pudding, grilled mushrooms, grilled tomatoes, and fried bacon. Do you think that this is enough for all day? Well, this is the typical Irish breakfast, highly appreciated by tourists.

If you decide to take lunch or dinner in the center of this wonderful city, don’t miss the delicious seafood chowder, a creamy soup with seafood and fish that is served with traditional Irish bread. This is one of the most popular traditional dishes that you can try. It can be served both as an appetizer and as a main course.

And when it comes to traditional drinks…it’s a well-known fact that Irish people treasure the famous Guinness beer. After the bartender fills your cup with Guinness it’s recommended to wait until the liquid turns from brown to black. Only after 60 seconds can you confidently enjoy your beer.

Where to Stay

If you want to make a day trip to London or Edinburgh then you should look for a hotel that’s located near the airport. Anywhere in the Dublin 1 or 2 areas should fit in with the plans of those people that don’t want to leave the city for day trips. These two areas allow you to maximize the choice of pubs and attractions. Personally, I loved the Baggot Street area. It’s a quiet area, excellent for people who do not mind walking.

Dublin is a 2 in 1 city and not due to the differences between the northern and southern area. It is because of the differences in how this city looks during day time and night time. From 8 AM to 5 PM the city is full of history, offering tourists the chance to admire an interesting architectural mix. After 5 PM Dublin becomes a city of crowded pubs, beer, whisky and music.

Image credits: Tobias Abel, William Murphy, Jennifer Boyer, Steve GarfieldglockentierchenLynne HandJeremy Keith