Whew – our trip to Ireland, with our friends Laura and John, was super fast, but really fun! None of us had ever visited Ireland before, so we were motivated to see as much as possible, and packed a lot into our five night trip.
We flew into Dublin and arrived on Friday morning. After taking a taxi into the city (no train from the airport), we checked into our hotel (the Kellys Hotel Dublin) and checked out the city. The Kellys is in a great location, near the shopping on Grafton Street, right by Trinity College, and within walking distance to Dublin Castle and Temple Bar. Our first stop: Trinity College to see the Book of Kells.
The Library at Trinity is absolutely incredible. They don’t allow photography inside, but here is a snapshot from Wikipedia that does it a bit of justice.
I’m always in a shopping mood while in Europe, so after Trinity College, we hit Grafton Street and Marks and Spencer. We passed a random leprechaun and a pretty flower stall along the way. :)
We purchased copious amounts of knickers at Marks and Spencer. The boys were quite bored. Jet lag had definitely set in, and I believe there may have also been a short nap involved while they were waiting on us to finish shopping!
Our last stop of the day was Dublin Castle. After reading about it in all of the guidebooks, we decided not to go in, but it was certainly foreboding from the outside!
After dinner at Gallagher’s Boxty House in Temple Bar – with Irish coffee, naturally! – we called it a night.
Day two, our final day in Dublin, was a whirlwind! First up, the Guinness Brewery tour. I have to admit it now, I’m not a beer drinker. Much of this trip was spent watching my three traveling companions enjoy pints! I did love the beautiful birds eye view of Dublin from the top of the Storehouse.
The other big stop of the day was the Kilmainham Gaol. Kilmainham is now a museum, but was a working prison, home to prisoners during the Irish rebellions and famine. It was a sobering experience, but we learned a lot about Irish history and the spirit of the Irish people.
A visit to Dublin isn’t complete without viewing the beautiful Doors of Dublin.
And I’m here to tell you that your Dublin visit also MUST include a visit to Murphy’s ice cream! We got tastes of anything we wanted, the staff was super sweet, and the ice cream was absolutely to die for. Try a combo of the mint, coffee, and Kerry cream. YUM.
The next day, we were off to explore Southeast Ireland! More to come later this week!