Dublin, the capital of Ireland is known for its old cobbled streets, historical museums, incredible church spires, and lively pubs. Just north and south of the city center you will find beaches, ship harbors and amazing views of the sea. There are hundreds of things to do in this vibrant city, but here is a list of the top 8 things that are must-sees in this special city.
1. Tour St. Patrick’s Cathedral
This towering 800-year old church was built to honor the country’s patron saint and it boasts incredible statues, beautiful stained glass, and tiled floors that detail St. Patrick’s rich history. A fun fact is that Jonathan Swift, author of Gulliver’s Travels, was the Dean of this church in the 18th century.
2. Enjoy the Guinness Storehouse and Gravity Bar
Guinness beer is almost sacred in this city and the storehouse is seven floors of glass that looks like a giant pint glass. You can tour the facility to learn all about how the foamy dark beer is made and then afterward enjoy a pint of it from the top floor of the Gravity Bar that offers an amazing view of the city.
3. Savor the Fish & Chips at Dublin’s Oldest Chipper
Leo Burdock is a traditional fish and chips place in the Christchurch area of Dublin. This is the original shop that has been in business since 1913. It has since become a chain of “chipper” shops located in Ballyfermot Road, Clarehall, Rathmines, Temple Bar, and Naas.
4. Experience History at the General Post Office
One of Ireland’s most famous buildings with its iconic columns still has bullet holes in the façade from when it was the headquarters of the rebels during the Easter Uprising of 1916. Be sure to visit the GPO Witness History Visitor Centre that features an engaging exhibition that will have you caught in the “crossfire.’
5. Discover the Mummies and Artifacts at the National Museum
The National Museum of Ireland is a treasury of Celtic and Medieval art, including sacred metalwork dating from the Iron Age to the Middle Age as well as jewels like the Ardagh Chalice and the Tara Brooch. However, the star of the show is the bog bodies, mummies that are thousands of years old that were found in Irish bogs.
6. View the Sacred Book of Kells at Trinity College
The Book of Kells was written around 800 AD by the Irish and is kept beneath glass inside the Old Library at Trinity College. This sacred text full ink illustrations on vellum depict the Four Gospels, enhanced with drawings of Celtic Knots. It has been in the college library since 1653 after being buried and hidden for a few years so that the Viking Invaders would not steal it.
7. Experience the Buskers and Shopping on Grafton Street
The shopping mecca of Dublin is on Grafton Street that is lined with markets and stores with wares from high-end chains and local artisans. However, the stars of the show are the buskers who take the streets to play the piano, harp, and other instruments in hope of being tipped a few euros.
8. Ride the Dart Ferry to Howth
Howth is a picturesque fishing village to the north that is 30 minutes away from Dublin by ferry. Enjoy a pleasant walk on the cliffs and long sandy beach and visit the village’s historic lighthouse and the Martello Tower Museum that features the history of telecommunications from the 1840s to the present.
Dublin is also known for its guided and self-guided tours so you will always have something to do in the Capital of the Emerald Green Isle.