Sure, the almost mythical economic growth of the last 15 years and the explosion of multiculturalism, which has seen people settle in the city from fields as far flung as Nairobi and Nagoya, have given the city a cosmopolitan strut and swagger it never had before – not to mention a whole new world of distractions and delights to rival those of any other city of comparable size. But Dublin’s greatest draw remains Dubliners themselves, both native-born and blown in.
You should visit the excellent museums, amble through the landscaped parks and engage with Dublin’s myriad cultural offerings, but make enough time for socialising, the beating heart that makes this city thrive. Garrulous, amiable and witty, Dubliners at their ease are the greatest hosts of all, providing a life-affirming experience that will restore your faith in human nature. How many other places can you say that about?
There are cultural pleasures too, of course, in the land of Joyce and Yeats, U2 and the Undertones. Dublin, Cork and Belfast all have top-notch restaurants, party-on pubs and a foot-stomping live-music scene, while you can track down impromptu pub sessions of traditional Irish music in places like Galway, Doolin and Killarney. And there’s a wealth of history to discover, from the countless medieval castles and early Christian monasteries to the powerful political murals of Belfast and Derry, and one of the biggest concentrations of prehistoric monuments in Europe.
These tours & activities make it easy:
- Leave from Dublin for a Jeep tour through Northern Ireland and the North West
- Skip the line for the Guinness Storehouse
- Take a rail trip to Blarney Castle