Dublin is the beautiful capital city of Ireland, famed for its Guinness brewery, bustling bars around Temple Street and array of shops – while all this can make for a perfect getaway, did you know there is a lot more to holidays in Dublin?
Know Before Visiting Dublin
I’ve been to Dublin a couple of times now, after finding many cheap flights on and below is a guide to what I think you should know before heading to the city yourself.
Getting to and from the airport
Dublin Airport lies around 8 miles from the south-west of the city, making it just a 20-minute drive away – when I was there, I didn’t hire a car, but I can certainly see the appeal of it.
Despite the airport being such a short distance away, my bus dropped off and picked up loads of other holidaymakers to and from their hotels, meaning the journey between the airport and city took a lot longer than I expected.
This meant I felt a bit rushed on my final day, whereas if I’d had a car I could have jumped in that and been at the airport in less than half an hour.
While there is nothing wrong with spending your days shopping in style, or soaking up the atmosphere of its bars and pubs, booking car hire from Dublin Airport means you can travel out of the city’s limits and take in breathtaking countryside, as well as some of the lesser-known attractions.
Visiting the surrounding villages and towns
If you do decide to hire a car at the airport, you are well placed to discover what lies on the outskirts of Dublin, before heading into the city itself – it is nearer to the coast than you might think.
The seaside town of Rush is around 16 miles away from the capital and offers stunning scenery, lovely beaches and a harbor filled with small fishing vessels.
Howth Village is also worth driving to (and is just 5 miles away from the airport) and your efforts will be rewarded with charming bars and restaurants, pretty vistas and towers and castles that are itching to be explored.
Choosing a hotel to stay in
Should you be driving into the city center, you’ll obviously want accommodation that comes with guest parking or nearby spaces – that aside, Dublin boasts a fantastic array of places to sleep, from cheap and cheerful hostels to luxurious hotels – this means you will find something to match your budget.
If you choose to stay in the popular Temple Bar area, be prepared to pay that little bit extra for the convenience of being central.
Choosing accommodation a little bit further out – such as in Lucan, Donnybrook or Sutton – will help push the cost down, but don’t worry, as you’ll still be well-connected to the center.
Alternatively, you might decide to stay in a hotel close to the airport (after all, it’s only a short drive from the centre). This has a number of benefits, such as making catching your flight easier.
Many, but not all, restaurants in Dublin include a ten to 15 per cent service charge on the bill, while a discretionary ten percent tip is usually given to taxi drivers – it’s always nice to reward good service.
The Irish are very friendly and polite, and good manners go a long way here. This means queuing nicely, always saying thank you and apologizing if you bump into someone in the street – you’ll find locals will more often than not chat to you in bars, so don’t be afraid of getting into a conversation.
Ireland is a religious nation, so when in places of worship such as churches, make sure you are quiet, respectful and keep those mobile phones switched off!
(photo credit: 1)