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A weekend in Ireland

We went a little crazy recently with my travel buddy Anthimos and we decided it would be fun to visit Ireland. For a weekend. Initially we thought that a weekend wouldn’t be enough but you know what? Three days in Ireland were totally worth it. We managed to go around Dublin and do a small roadtrip across the western side of the Irish island, which was eventually the highlight of the trip.

The city of Dublin

We arrived in Dublin in the evening and guess what – it was rainy. If you want to visit Ireland you should keep in mind that there is a 90% possibility that it’s going to be rainy. Dublin is a cute city, don’t expect to be amazed, but still there are some beautiful places, like the Book of Kells, the Dublin Castle, the St. Patrick’s Cathedral, the Guinness Storehouse (birthplace of our beloved Guinness) and the Jameson distillery. I would say that 1-2 full days are more than enough to explore Dublin.

St. Patrick's Cathedral
Start your day with a walk across the river Liffey and go for breakfast and coffee at Wuff. Don’t forget to order the chocolate Fondue, you will love it. Walk towards the Christ Church Cathedral and take a look inside the church. There is no entrance fee and its architecture is magnificent. You can continue walking your way through the city, the distances are not that big. St. Patrick’s Cathedral is not that far and there is also a nice park around the cathedral with well-preserved grass and wonderful flowers. The Dublin Castle is also nearby.
The “Book of Kells” exhibition and the Trinity college library should come next. Walk your way through the Dame Street (grab a coffee as well) towards the Trinity college. The exhibition is part of the Trinity college. The “book of Kells” is an illuminated manuscript Gospel book in Latin, containing the four Gospels of the New Testament together with various prefatory texts and tables. It is believed to have been created c. 800 AD. The exhibition features the pages of that book and the history behind it. If you want to avoid waiting for ages in the queue, book your tickets online, some minutes upon arrival (just google for ‘book of Kells online tickets’). It’s really interesting to see some figures like Jesus or St. John, portrayed in a whole different way that you used to know. Walk your way out of the exhibition and you will see the Trinity college library, which is a magnificent building where thousands of books are being kept.
The Trinity college Library
Finish your day with a Guinness tour in the Guinness Storehouse. During the tour you will learn about the brewing procedure of Guinness and learn some interesting facts about its story. Of course the tour ends on the top floor where you can enjoy the view of the city of Dublin along with a fine Guinness beer. If you have enough time go for a 40-minute distillery tour in the Jameson distillery. Both are open until 7pm. And don’t forget, book your ticket online, upon arrival, it’s cheaper.
Guinness Beer

Finally if you want some traditional Irish food my recommendation is the Quays Irish Restaurant. Don’t forget to order a Bailey’s Ice Cream for dessert. If you want to grab another beer later, my recommendation is the Dicey’s garden. There is cheap Guinness beer and the place is packed with young people. If the weather is nice, you could even enjoy your beer outdoors.

Galway, Cliffs of Moher

The Cliffs of Moher
In my opinion, a roadtrip towards the western side of the island is a must. And my recommendation would be to rent a car. In case you don’t feel comfortable driving a car “the British way” (the steering wheel is on the right side) you can also take the bus to Galway. Along the way, you will notice that the landscape around you is beautiful. Start your exploration with the Cliffs of Moher. Seriously, this was one of the most magnificent natural landscapes that I have ever seen. Walk your way across the cliffs, there are many different points of view. I spent at least 3 hours at this place.

Galway should be next. Walk through the narrow streets of this wonderful town and enjoy the street artists and singers. If you want a coffee, you should go to Tig Coili and order an Irish coffee. You won’t regret it. And you will probably be starving by that time, so you can find some of the best pizzas you ever tasted at The Dough’s Bros Wood Fired Pizza. The Murphy’s pub is a nice and relaxed pub where you can find plenty of older Galwegians chatting over pints of Guinness.

Ireland was a great destination for a weekend and the view that I experienced at the Cliffs of Moher will stay forever into my mind. Furthermore, after all those pints I had during my stay, I will probably not drink any Guinness beer for a long time. 😛

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