Essential Maintenance:

Getting Around

Dublin - LuasEven if you’ve brought your car on the ferry to Dublin, you’ll probably end up using the extensive public transport network at some point during your stay. Locals and visitors alike use the train (DART,) the tram (the Luas,) and Dublin Bus to get most places within the city. Each has their own app with updated timetables, downloadable. from both Apple and Android app stores. This way, the city is navigable and accessible to even the most “directionally challenged” among us!

Leap Cards

Most locals use a Leap Card, a prepaid card that you simply tap on a small terminal at the stop or on the bus. Each costs €5, and then you can load as much money on it as you’d like! Most Spar and Centra shops will have these for sale. If you’re only staying for a weekend, however, a Leap Visitor Card may be suitable. For just one flat fee, you can take advantage of unlimited travel on Dublin Bus, Airlink, Luas, DART, Commuter Rail, and Go-Ahead Ireland transport systems. Leap Visitor Cards are available for 24, 72, and 7-day increments.

Places to See & Things to Do

One of the best things about Dublin is how manageable it is. A majority of the most exciting attractions are centred around the same area, so it’s easy to do a lot in a small amount of time! While there are plenty more things off the beaten path, there are a few “essentials” that you should prioritise during your first weekend to Dublin:

  • Guinness Storehouse - While there are always plenty of tourists here, there’s something exciting about sipping a pint of Black Gold in the place where it’s been brewed for hundreds of years.
  • Trinity College - Always bustling with students and visitors alike, Trinity college Dublin sits right in the centre of the city and offers plenty to explore. See the Book of Kells and the world famous Long Room library, all on campus and open to the public.
  • Cathedrals - There are too many cathedrals and churches in Dublin to count, but try to squeeze in one or two while you’re in Dublin. St. Patrick’s Cathedral, Christ Church Cathedral, and St. Michan’s Church all have tourist-friendly attractions, like ancient crypts and mummies!
  • The Phoenix Park - Home to the President of Ireland, the Dublin Zoo, and the famous deer, The Phoenix Park is the largest enclosed park in any European capital. On a nice day, you’ll see families, dogs, picnics, sports games, and anyone else looking to enjoy the biodiversity of the beautiful natural pasture.

Nightlife

Temple BarOf course, a weekend in Dublin wouldn’t be complete without a foray into the city’s vibrant nightlife. In 2017, there were 773 registered pubs within Dublin county, leaving you with more options for a night out than you’ll ever need.

The Temple Bar area is always bursting with locals and visitors alike, but if you’re looking for better prices and smaller crowds, consider venturing just a few blocks out. No matter where you’re staying in Dublin, you’re sure to find a nightclub, traditional pub, trendy wine bar, or some combination of each that’ll suit your mood and taste!

Dublin is renowned for its musical culture, with many of the best and most rousing performances taking place in local unassuming pubs. Pop into any drinking establishment on a Friday or Saturday night and you’re likely to find live music that’ll keep you entertained into the night.

Where to Eat

Dublin is quickly becoming another European culinary capital, with new, interesting restaurants popping up nearly everywhere in the city. If you’re looking for traditional Irish cuisine, check out Gallagher’s Boxty House in Temple Bar. Boxty is a potato pancake and is served as a wrap around a variety of different fillings, like bacon. If Boxty isn’t your cup of tea, Gallagher’s also serves up traditional stew, chowder, and locally-farmed meat.

While in the City Centre, you’re spoiled for choice with trendy restaurants revered by locals like Bunsen Burger, Dublin Pizza Company, and Queen of Tarts. And if you just can’t decide, take to Lovin Dublin to help you out.