• Mckenzie Dow

Don't do Dublin like an idiot

As word continues to spread among the people in my lives that I am moving to Dublin, I constantly hear "Oh wow! I'm going to have to come visit!" I of course would love it if every person I care about in my life would come visit me. It would ease the transition and be fun to explore the city all the time with different people. So it's got me thinking, where would I take people if they came to visit? The itinerary would obviously differ depending on the person, so here is my definitive list of what every young person should do when they come to Dublin:

1. Have a pie at Pieman in Temple Bar. Maybe it's just me who finds these pies to be the most amazing food in the city, but they sure as hell are delicious. If you sit outside there is always good people watching and its right in the center of a lot of action.

I wasn't kidding about the pies. They would be my last meal.

2. Kilmainham Goal. This is an old jail and incredibly historical. You can just feel the history in the structure of the place. Some of the most important historical prisoners ended up here during the Irish rebellion against the English and were later executed. This really fuelled the fire of independence for the country and changed the attitudes around rebellion. Ireland eventually became a free state thanks to those prisoners and the place alone is just really cool.

3. After a week of walking on cobblestone and beer bloats, treat yourself to a mani-pedi at Tropical Popical. I got my very first manicure here and it was awesome. The girls in there are great and the tropical vibes are fantastic on a rainy day in Dublin. When you walk in they offer you a coconut soda and everyone is so kind.

4. If you're in the mood for shopping, definitely go thrifting around city centre. While Dublin doesn't have any huge thrift store chains like Goodwill, they do have many high end thrift stores scattered throughout and it's quite fun searching for that perfect top!

5. Obviously you need to drink some beer. Some of my favorite pubs in the city include Stags Head, Sweeneys, McDaids, Cassidy's, and O'Donaghues on Merrion Row. I'm sure that once I live there for a longer amount of time I'll probably find some even cooler and less touristy places to get a pint.

6. Go to The George. It's a legendary gay bar and it's so much fun and so welcoming and always a good time.

7. Visit some of the towns on the coast by taking the DART. Some of my favorites are Howth, Dun Laoghaire, Dalkey. They all have good places to eat and wonderful views of the sea.

Howth Harbor

8. Climb Killiney Hill. There are some incredible views and it's just fun!

9.The Earl is this weird little breakfast place on Earl Street. It's definitely a place where some locals go almost every single day. It's a real Irish breakfast and they have awesome pastries in there too. The decor isn't jazzy and it's a lowkey gem right in the heart of the city. Update: My father who just visited has informed me that the Earl has closed recently and is now reopened as a bakery.

10. If you want to meet your classic Irish country boy, drink a lot, and dance, then go to Copper Face Jacks, or "Copper's" as the locals call it, especially if there was a GAA game earlier that day. It's a very populated nightclub and the kind of place where you never really know who you might bump into. The place is practically an institution in Dublin and even without a GAA game earlier in the day, it's still a great time if you like to dance and drink.

11. Speaking of GAA, see a Hurling or Gaelic Football match at Croke Park. The atmosphere is awesome and so much fun. It's easy to get wicked into the game, even as a first-time spectator.

Croke Park on a rare sunny day

12. Little Ass Burritos. It's incredible food in a hole-in-the-wall kind of place right in town. Even the vegetarian burritos are phenomenal.

13. Stroll through Trinity College campus. It's one of Dublin's biggest tourist attractions, but it's not hard to see why. The place is absolutely gorgeous and there are always friendly people milling around.

14. St. Michan's Church is a must see if you enjoy looking at historical and somewhat creepy things. While the inside of the church isn't the best spectacle, what lies beneath it is the true treasure. The crypts contain a few mummified remains and you can view them up close. They are very eerie, but be warned: it can get very claustrophobic down there.

15. If Bewley's Coffee is open, you must go and get a cup of coffee. Last summer they were doing renovations, so I didn't have the opportunity to go in, but I do know that I love their coffee and even drink it here in the States.

16. Get pints at Gravediggers Pub, officially called John Kavanaugh's I think? It's next to Glasnevin Cemetery on the north side, and I promise you, it has the best Guinness in town.

As I've mentioned in a previous post, Dublin is a young city. As a younger visitor, it's easy to blend into the scene and there is always something to do.

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