Ireland is a destination that appeals to a lot of different people for a lot of different reasons. It’s known for a unique brand of natural beauty, for historic cities rich with culture, and, we should mention, for some of the world’s most legendary beers and spirits. To delve further into the specifics, however, we wanted to zero in on the country’s most popular city and highlight 15 reasons to visit Dublin.
Reasons to Visit Dublin
1. The People Are Wonderful
While some have an image of Irish people as high-energy, party-loving folk, the truth is that the population in the country’s cities is wonderful. The people are festive but very friendly, and eager to share their culture.
2. The Pubs Are As Good As Advertised
We couldn’t possibly write up a single pub, or even a single pub crawl when highlighting these most famous of Irish establishments. Suffice it to say that the city of Dublin has a reputation as an excellent pub town with good reason. Lonely Planet made an attempt at listing 10 of Dublin’s best pubs, and while it’s not a comprehensive list, it’s one you may want to glance at.
3. Phoenix Park Is Breathtaking
Wild deer, a giant obelisk, open green areas, gardens, the Dublin Zoo… all of this exists within Phoenix Park, combining to make it one of the most spectacular city parks in Europe.
4. You Can Browse The Trinity College Library
It’s difficult to describe this library, other than to say it looks like something from a fairy tale. It’s a magical place to explore if you get the chance.
5. It’s A Good Excuse To Read
Speaking of the library, traveling to Dublin also gives you an excellent excuse to read some classic authors. With some excellent authors hailing from Dublin and others merely setting stories there, it’s a city very closely tied to great writing. Reading in advance of your trip, or while staying there, is a treat.
6. You Can Try Kitesurfing
Many people are surprised how close Dublin is to some beautiful coastal stretches – and even more surprised to learn that this is a little bit of a hub for the trendy water sport of kitesurfing. You’ll almost certainly want a wetsuit, but if you’re an adventurous traveler, this is something to keep in mind.
7. The Comfort Food Is Delicious
Great seafood and traditional pub food abound in Dublin, in both casual and more upscale establishments. You won’t get quite as much variety as you would in say, London, but the comfort food in Dublin is wonderful.
8. Dublin is a great base for traveling to the rest of Ireland
It’s perfectly possible to travel from Dublin to almost all the rest of the Island on a day trip. If you don’t have another option, it’s perfectly doable with plenty of tours offering it… However, if you have time and want to really know the rest of the island you can easily do a 7-day trip through Ireland.
9. Dublin Castle Is Well Worth Exploring
Dublin Castle stands strong right in the middle of town and is a perfect sightseeing attraction. The history around the building is awe-inspiring, too. There’s been a fortification in the area since before the year 1000, and parts of the castle you see today were built in the 13th century.
10. So Is St. Patrick’s Cathedral
This is another must-see landmark in the city. Also a 13th-century building, it’s generally considered among the world’s most incredible cathedrals. If you want to learn more about it, have a look at this post about the history and beauty of St. Patrick’s Cathedral.
11. You Can Walk Down Grafton Street
Every great European city has a walking avenue or neighborhood known for its shopping (and for generally vibrant activity). Dublin is no exception, and Grafton Street is certainly one of the top attractions for a lot of visitors.
12. There Are Exotic Animals At The Dublin Zoo
It’s not necessarily bigger or better than other great urban zoos around the world, but the collection of exotic animals at the Dublin Zoo is alluring, to say the least. There are apes, monkeys, big cats, rhinos, elephants, and giraffes – and those are just some of the highlights in the mammal category! It’s a wonderful city zoo, located in the aforementioned Phoenix Park.
13. The Festival Scene Is Unrivaled
This point speaks for itself. But every prospective tourist should know that from music to visual arts to food and drinks, there are all kinds of fun festivals in Dublin each year. You may want to look at a calendar of festival events before booking your trip.
14. You Can Tour The Jameson Distillery
The idea of touring Guinness appeals to a lot of travelers, and it’s arguable that no beverage is as closely tied to Dublin as Guinness beer. But at the end of the day, you can tour a brewery just about anywhere. The chance to explore and learn about the Jameson whiskey distillery is more unique (and in the end, more uniquely Irish).
15. Local Theaters Make For A Lovely Night Out
As a final point, the theater scene in Dublin is wonderful, no matter what happens to be playing. In particular, the Abbey Theater should be near the top of your list, blending a modern façade with a storied past and a usually an excellent lineup of shows.
As great as Dublin is, Ireland is much more than only Dublin. If you have time to include other destinations have a look at this incredible Ireland itinerary!