You are heading for Dublin, and you might be wondering how to best explore Ireland's capital. So are you visiting Dublin without much of a plan, without an agenda tailor-made for your own interests? Just wanting to get a feel of the place, a first impression of Dublin? Or, assuming you either haven't been in the Irish capital before, or not recently at least, you really want to get to know the place?
No problem, actually ... Ireland's biggest and busiest city awaits you. With a host of opportunities. Unfortunately, Dublin can be a bit overwhelming, too. With too many options to choose from, too many things people recommend (even as a "must-see"), too little time to do them all. So let us help you on the way a bit. With some sample itineraries. And additional information that will make your visit easier. But always feel free to adapt all of these to your own needs, you are the boss!
Dublin in Just One Day?
Okay, this is really the most minimalist approach, the bare bones so to say - but you only have one full day to explore Dublin? Fret not, it can be done. though "exploring" might be too big a word for this itinerary. On the other hand, at least you'll get to know the highlights of the city, albeit only scratching at the surface, and staying in the city center. Find out more on how best to spend a single day in Dublin ...
Dublin in Two Days?
You have planned a quick trip to Dublin as a weekend city-break? Maybe not the best idea if you are jetting in from overseas (unless it is a stop-over), but for travellers from Great Britain or continental Europe this might be the most sensible option if pressed for time. Again, the emphasis of this itinerary is on highlights, but the city will open up a bit more for you.
Read up on how to plan for two full days in Dublin ...
Three Days in Dublin?
Add one more day, making it three (like a long, maybe even romantic weekend, nudge, nudge, wink, wink - because sex and Ireland are not mutually exclusive), and your city-break may become much more. Because you can get out of the crowded (and at times quite stuffy) city center, and explore two beautiful places on the shores of Dublin Bay. Even getting in a cliff walk and some seal-watching. Here is your itinerary for three busy but enjoyable days in Dublin.
A Walking Tour of Dublin's Essential Places
And how to get the best without spending a cent? Even that is easy. One thing that always surprises visitors ... Dublin is actually quite small. Or at least the city center proper is. And therefore it can be explored on foot, without chancing blisters and exhaustion, and without even paying for transport. Actually, a few hours will bring you to almost all the important sight and attractions. Follow my directions and walk through Dublin's city centre ... and if you are really into pinching pennies, you might also like my comprehensive list of splendid and free things to do in Dublin, including the best museums and galleries.
More Dublin Walks
Got a bit more time, or want to explore something else? Then why not try these two walks, which are both following the water, first off try walking through central Dublin along the Liffey, which will take in a lot of sights as well. Or explore the lesser-known Dublin by following the Royal Canal on foot. With a nod and a wink to Brendan Behan to boot.
Getting Around Dublin
Here's the crunch ... how do you get around Dublin? Or from the airport into the city? Or from your hotel to the centre? Unless you want to walk, Dublin's public transport system is the best option. Because, trust me, you do not want to drive into, even less in, Dublin's perma-clogged city centre!
Dublin ... Love/Hate?
Is Dublin really a great place? I think it is, honestly, though I may like other places better.
While I'd prefer Hamburg to Dublin on any given day, for instance, I'd never choose Mannheim over the Irish capital, to name but two German cities. Dublin is not as cosmopolitan as London, not as exciting as Glasgow, not as historic as York, not as bookish as Hay-on-Wye. And so on.