The O’Connell Street in the middle of the city is the main road. It’s where most of the monuments are located, such as the Parnell Monument, the O’Connell Monument and notably the 120m Spire of Dublin.
The Spire was built in 2003 as part of a plan to improve the streetscape. It’s erected at the exact location of Nelson’s Pillar, which was destroyed by a bomb in 1966.
I actually WOW-ed when I saw this structure, and I initially thought it’s used to absorb lighting or something. Really amazing to witness such a huge thorn!
Along the street there’s a Malaysian Chinese Restaurants called Pulau Pinang.
It was surprising to see a restaurant named after a tiny island in Malaysia. Never knew the Penang Island is well-known over here in Dublin huh? Penangites must be damn proud.
Entering a souvenir store, particularly Carroll’s, can be interesting as well.
This is Ken the Irish lamb with the clover leaf nose. Everyone say “Meeeekkk!”. It means “Hi!” in Lambish language.
And to anyone who doesn’t like me (I’m sure there is, I get hate comments every now and then) you can Póg Mo Thoin! The Irish way would be the best! =P
Anyway, here are some of the places I’ve been to during my visit to Dublin.
Firstly, the Dublin Zoo.
This is the group that went to Dublin, excluding me of course since I took this photo. Everyone seemed all hyped up to see some animals!
There wasn’t any special animal in particular, but I was attracted to this monkey – the Squirrel Monkey.
It’s hyperactive and cute.
Next, is the number one attraction in Dublin – the Guinness Storehouse! *Cheers*
Before my research on places to visit in Dublin, I can only think of the Guinness Storehouse! And do you know that Guinness for the Irish is like water for the Malaysian? I think they drink Guinness almost every day! With breakfast, lunch, teatime, dinner and maybe supper too! Imagine having Guinness with your roti telur.
Anyway, visitors receive a complimentary pint of Guinness at the Gravity bar, which is located at the highest floor of the building.
It’s definitely the best pint of Guinness around the world, since it’s freshly brewed from the brewery. Oh it’s Guinness Draught by the way, not Guinness Stout.
Besides producing Guinness like mad, they also have a huge variety of Guinness gifts and souvenirs.
Ranging from cups to plates, shirts to under wears and chocolates to everything, it’s almost impossible to leave Dublin without a Guinness-related item. If you do, it’s probably you hate black stuff!
However, the girls seem to go wild when it comes to Guinness.
I think I should drink more Guinness. You’ll never know what’s gonna happen next right? =P
Another must-visit place is the Kilmainham Gaol. No, it’s not a place where you shout “GOOAALLLL, Rooney scored!”. Not a stadium, it’s actually a prison.
And “Gaol” is actually pronounced as “Jail”.
It’s one of the largest unoccupied jails in Ireland. During the guided tour, we were brought to see prison cells and were told about the history as well. I would rate this attraction second behind Guinness Storehouse.
After that, we went to the National Wax Museum Plus.
This wax museum is not the typical Madame Tussauds with Justin Timberlake, Brad Pitt and David Beckham. It’s actually a museum which brings you back in time on a journey of famous individuals who have contributed in shaping the country.
One important individual was Sir Ken Wooi.
He signed some treaty with some big shot when Dublin was formed. What was it about? I’m not sure, I didn’t read what’s on the table, unfortunately.
Oh by the way, you gotta believe how much the Irish love Guinness.
They love it so much, that even Irish wax characters drink them!
After we’re done with the wax museum, we dropped by Trinity College.
Trinity College was built in the 18th century and till today it dominates the city landscape and it’s one of the oldest buildings around.
We managed to visit Malahide Castle too, which is located 40 minutes north-west from the city center.
Unfortunately it was closed by the time we reached. Most of the attractions are closed by 5pm. Very early I think.
Anyway on the last day, we made quick stops at a few famous landmarks. One of them was St. Patrick’s Cathedral.
It’s definitely a huge cathedral. You need to pay to enter it.
Next, the Christ Church can be seen from Patrick Street.
It’s where the heritage center, Dublinia and The Viking World is located. There are 3 exhibitions, namely the Viking World, Medieval Dublin and History Hunters. It’s a good place to be if you wanna know more about the history of Dublin.
The Dublin Castle is unlike those old bulky castles we usually see. It’s more of a large area with different blocks of buildings.
It doesn’t amaze me to be honest.
Next up, St. Stephen’s Green.
It’s a beautiful public park located in the city. You can definitely feel its tranquility when you stroll in the park.
Besides all that I’ve mentioned, I’ve visited some museums as well, such as the National Museum of Ireland and the National Gallery of Ireland. But they’re definitely no match against the famous museums in Paris.
Anyway, each of us bought a Dublin Pass during the trip.
Kinda cool right the pass? It gives free (actually I’ve paid when I buy the pass) entry to attractions, special offers when shopping and dining, free (again, paid) airport transfer and a free (paid) Dublin guidebook.
However, it might be costly. I bought my 2-day pass for €44.00 (RM220.00) but I didn’t fully utilize it because I didn’t manage to visit all the attractions listed. So if you’re confident in visiting all the listed places, yes you should consider the Dublin Pass.
The public transportation services in Dublin doesn’t have underground trains. Alternatively, you can travel by Dublin’s Luas trams.
But you can only go to few places with the tram – for instance O’Connell Street, Dublin Zoo, Kilmainham Gaol and Guinness Storehouse. On the other hand, you can take the public bus service.
These double-decker buses can be seen everywhere in the city.
I bought a 3-day Rambler Ticket at €13.30 (RM66.50) to travel around Dublin by public bus. It works exactly like an all-day ticket, except that you can choose from 1-day, 3-day and 5-day. We used it mainly to get to O’Connell Street from the place we stayed, and also to Dublin Zoo.
Here’s something tricky – getting on the right public bus to the desired destination can be quite frustrating. Since there are too many routes and too little in-depth information, it’s not easy to visit all the places by public bus.
Just look at the number of routes this particular bus stop has. I don’t even know which route goes where. I guess only the locals will know.
So, with the limitations of the tram and public bus services, the last resort is definitely walking. Actually the attractions are located quite near to each other, therefore walking could be a good idea.
On the bad side, walking can be tiring.
But with the Rambler ticket, taking the public bus and walking seem like a good combination – it gives us the freedom to roam freely. But if you want a quick hassle-free sightseeing tour around Dublin, you can check out the Dublin Sightseeing Bus Tours.
During my stay in Dublin, I didn’t try much Irish food. We only had Irish food on the last day – the Irish stew.
Guinness stouts are actually added to provide extra flavour and it tastes really good!
And yeah, even the coasters are Guinness-related.
Say no evil to Guinness, see no evil in Guinness – just indulge it!
During the Winter season, the sun sets at about 4pm and most of the shops are closed by 5pm. Unlike the shops in Malaysia where they open until 10pm because they wanna earn more money.
This is the Liffey river at night. Somehow it looks like the Seina river in Paris. In fact, the city layout of Dublin and Paris is almost similar. They are divided into north and south parts with a river in the middle. The difference is Paris is 2 times larger than Dublin.
Oh yeah, not forgetting the General Post Office at O’Connell Street.
It’s another prominent building and one might actually doubt that it’s a post office. Coz post offices are normally not as grand as that one.
Besides the usual night bars and clubbing venues, there is nothing much to do in Dublin. Most of us are quite tired after being out the whole day. Therefore retiring to the bed is probably the best option.
That is unless you’re a Utopia player. Any Utopia player reading this?
Hey, I saw Utopia version 2 here in Dublin.
And I think you might be interested to go in see see!