A Long Weekend in Dublin

Those choosing to visit the Irish capital will won’t get bored in a city which has managed to maintain its cultural, historical and artistic lineage and establish itself as an internationally recognised destination. Without sounding negative, because Dublin is an amazing city, it is one of the ‘most expensive City on the planet’. I mean when I was there people from London were complaining about the price of a drink, so be aware of that. Clearly, if cash is an issue you should stay in one of the many bargain hostels and self-catering apartments in and around the city. In addition the city itself is quite compact, therefore, most of the key Dublin tourist attractions are very accessible by foot. But don’t be fooled, you can (and should) get lost in the backstreets. I picked up a signed copy of a James Herbert’s “The Rats Trilogy” in hard back for 7 euros (about $5), so I advise getting lost.

It is also a great place to come to party as long as you behave yourself and don’t offend. Approximately half the population are under 25 so perhaps this is not surprising. It would also explain why there are so many high-end retail outlets in the city center, not my bag at all, I preferred the farmers and traditional markets. Ireland has a bloody history, much of it as a direct consequence of religious oppression and imperialism on the part of the English ruling elite. To see why the sores run so deep visit the Kilmainham Gaol, it is a brilliant museum which covers the last 400 years or so of Irish history. You will certainly understand why there was so much resistance.

When I go on holiday, I like to have a drink, more than I do normally, so I had to visit the Guinness storehouse brewery. I thought a “genuine” pint of Guinness might do the business as opposed to the insipid offerings I had imbued before. Sadly, this was not the case. It’s official…. “I do not like Guinness”. Even though my drink was beautifully poured and the virtues of the so called “black gold”, were instilled for the previous two hours, and it was served in the “gravity bar”, complete with panoramic view over the city, I still gave my drink to the good looking woman next to me. I had a lager and lime in the next bar! Yes I’m a Philistine!!!

One of the ‘most attractive points about Dublin’, is the amount of green space, it has more of this precious commodity than any other European capital. If you are into art then a few hours in the National Gallery of Ireland, with a display of thousands of painting and objects set in one of Dublin’s many stunning buildings, will be a few hours well spent . The city enjoyed something of architectural revolution in the 19th century. The gallery along with another must see destination, Dublin Castle, is free. The castle was the seat of English dominance for 800 years, construction finished in 1258. It also contains the Chester Beatty Library, home to an astounding collection of Oriental and Far Eastern art.

OK there you go, another city to visit!

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