With a flight of just over a hour from London and a short coach ride from Dublin Airport to the centre of Dublin, a trip to the capital of the Emerald Isle is one of the most straightforward Weekend Escapes from London.
We stayed near O’ Connell Street which is one of the main hubs of the city and the perfect place to begin our exploration of the city.First impressions were that the city was small and compact which was easily traversed by foot.
North of the Liffey has plenty of shopping options with a number of shopping centres and the outside market in Moore Street. Places of interest include the General Post Office which played a pivotal part in the Easter Rising, The Dublin Writers Museum, The Hugh Lane Art Gallery, the Parnell, O’ Connell and James Joyce statues and the strange Monument of Light or Spire which is a stainless steel 393ft monument .Also north of the river near the old dock area is the new Docklands area with the Custom House, a reminder of Dublin’s maritime past. The relatively new Sean O’Casey Bridge and Samuel Beckett Bridge connect the new developments.
It is safe to say that it is on the south side of the Liffey that will interest most visitors to Dublin, Trinity College is a popular attraction especially the library where you can find The Book of Kells. Behind the college is the main Georgian buildings and squares which are location of many of the museums and art galleries. This is also the location of Irish Government buildings and relaxing parks.One of the delights of visiting Dublin is to walk around this area enjoying the cultural organisations, the many small eateries and finding some of the hidden treasures.
Grafton Street is a major shopping and entertainment thoroughfare that leads in the north to Temple Bar which is full of shops, pubs and bars. A pleasant area to walk around in the day, in the evening it gets a bit more exciting with plenty of drink flowing and Irish music coming out of many of the establishments.The Irish are often associated with producing excellent drinks and a visit to the Guinness Storehouse and the Old Jameson Distillery are on most people’s to do list.
Dublin is one of those small European capitals which may lack many wow factors but is an enjoyable place with many diverse attractions. What really makes Dublin different is the Dubliners themselves, their legendary ability in enjoying themselves translates into a relaxing and good natured atmosphere with a genuine friendliness that is found almost everywhere.