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Dublin Delights: How to Spend 36 Hours in the Emerald City (after 18 years)!

Updated: Nov 16, 2023

I don't really remember my first trip to Dublin as it was 18 years ago, so having to recreate some iconic photos was a must. Dublin, with its rich history, vibrant culture, and warm hospitality, is a city that captivates the hearts of travellers from around the world. From navigating the Dublin Express from the airport to immersing yourself in the Temple Bar area, here's how to make every moment count in Dublin.

September was a pleasant time to visit Dublin, as the city is less crowded than during the peak summer months. We were still able to enjoy outdoor activities and explore Dublin's cultural attractions without the extreme weather conditions of winter. It only rained whilst eating dinner otherwise it was just a bit windy with blue skies!

The Guinness Storehouse in Dublin isn't just a brewery tour; it's an immersive journey through the heart and soul of Ireland's most iconic stout. Located at the historic St. James's Gate Brewery, this seven-story visitor experience unveils the fascinating history, brewing process, and cultural significance of Guinness. As you ascend through the building, you'll learn the art of pouring the perfect pint, savour the rich aromas in the tasting rooms, and culminate your adventure with breathtaking views of Dublin from the Gravity Bar. It's not just a tour; it's a celebration of a 260-year-old legacy that's been captivating beer enthusiasts and culture seekers alike. We spent roughly 2 hours there, which left us enough time to enjoy our pint in the Gravity Bar without rushing.

A great way that I always recommend to see a city if you haven't got a lot of time is jump on a Hop On Hop Off Bus Tour. Big Bus is my favourite and Dublin was by far the best location I've ever done a tour of! The commentary from the drivers was brilliant and just so informative.

It's a great way to explore Dublin's rich history and vibrant culture Big Bus Tour, a captivating journey that offers the perfect blend of convenience and flexibility. Climb aboard an open-top double-decker bus and enjoy unobstructed views of Dublin's iconic landmarks, all while listening to insightful commentary through complimentary headphones. The beauty of this experience lies in its "hop on, hop off" feature, allowing you to explore attractions like Trinity College, Temple Bar, and Dublin Castle at your own pace. Along the way, you'll discover hidden gems and capture picture-perfect moments. They offer a variety of tickets, so don't forget to take a look below to see if you can combine with other attractions to get the best deal!

A quick look at my itinerary...

Day 1 8:30 AM - Landing in Dublin: Our Dublin adventure began as the plane touched down at Dublin Airport. To get to the city centre swiftly and conveniently, we hopped on the Dublin Express, a reliable shuttle service that will whisk you away to your urban exploration. For €8 euro it was great value! 9:15 AM - Fitzsimons Hotel: It was time to find our hotel, drop our bags and have breakfast. We ended up having breakfast here because it was quiet and the staff were super friendly! The hotel was nestled right in the heart of Temple Bar, so a perfect base for our Dublin escapade, with comfortable accommodations and a lively atmosphere. Now we've gotten rid of our bags it was time to go for a stroll and wonder the streets of Dublin. 12:30 PM - Big Bus Tours: After a bit of walking (and me not wearing the most sensible shoes) we broke up the afternoon with a ride on the Big Bus Tours, a hop-on-hop-off sightseeing bus that covers all the top tourist hotspots. The buses run regularly, and your ticket allows you to jump on and off at various attractions throughout the day. Be sure to grab a pair of headphones for informative commentary along the way.

5:00PM - Dinner Time and the Temple Bar Experience: We returned to our hotel to freshen up, before heading out into the Temple Bar district for dinner and entertainment. Fitzsimons Hotel boasts an inviting pub and a rooftop terrace, perfect for a pre-dinner drink. We stopped for dinner at Smoking Bones before heading to the show! 8:45 PM - Spencer and Vogue Podcast Live: Dublin is famous for its vibrant nightlife, and Temple Bar is the epicenter of the action. 3Olympia Theatre was just up the road from our hotel, so a great venue to watch the podcast's very first show!

Day 2 9:30 AM - Breakfast in Lemon Jelly Cafe: It was time to kickstart our second and last day with a hearty Irish breakfast at one of the many charming cafes or restaurants. We headed out of the Temple Bar area and over the River Liffey to Lemon Jelly Cafe. I'd seen it recommended on Trip Advisor, so had to check it out. 10:30 AM - Big Bus Tours (Part II): As we had the 24 hour ticket, we resumed our Big Bus adventure to head over to the Guinness Storehouse. It's a 25 minute walk from Temple Bar area, so as we had the bus ticket still it made sense to hop on and see the sights again!

11:45 AM - Guinness Storehouse: It was time for the highlight of the trip for me. (After the podcast of course!) The Guinness Storehouse took us through a fascinating journey through the history and brewing process of Ireland's most famous export. Even got to enjoy a pint of the 'black stuff' at the Gravity Bar, where the panoramic views of Dublin are as refreshing as the stout itself. (If you don't like the bitter taste ask for Guiness and Black and thank me later!) 2:30 PM - Lunch on the Go: As we strolled back from the Storehouse to O'Connell Street, we took advantage of the diverse culinary offerings Dublin has to offer. Grabbing a quick lunch at a local eatery or sample some street food before catching the Dublin Express back to the airport. 6:20PM - Flights, Delays and More Delays: After making it back to the airport in plenty of time and doing the classic of exploring Duty Free and heading to the gate way before we needed to be there over the tannoy system a delay is announced for our flight back to LHR due to bad weather...classic! The trip had gone so well and I thought the luck of the Irish really was with us until that point.

So, when are you planning your Dublin adventure?!

Sláinte! 🇮🇪

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