While gallivanting around Dublin, it was unavoidable to partake in some of the popular tourist activities you can find in the city. I like to live a life of balance, and this comes into play in all areas – including explorations.
When exploring new places I like to balance tourist activities with hidden spots discovered from the locals.
On this day we did just that – wandered the city visiting big ticket places like Trinity College and the Guinness factory, as well as visiting a hidden gem. On this day I logged just under 20 miles of movement (I did squeeze in a short run, but most of this was from walking. I love vacations).
This post will cover the former.
Why Trinity College? Well initially because the Google said it would be a must see. I wasn’t enthralled by The Book of Kells (sorry), but the library was like something out of a fairy tale. Beauty and the beast to be exact.
Rows and rows of old historical books, guarded by ancient philosophers. It was like stepping into a time warp. I tried asking one of the statues for a book on mail order husbands, but he didn’t deliver. Owell, looks like I have to return to find my Irish soul mate.
If you’re not keen on wandering a hall full of old books (but you really should) the campus alone is simply gorgeous. I find college campuses to have a unique beauty. Of course they are slightly more enjoyable when I’m not an actual student, but they are lovely nonetheless.
After wandering the campus for a bit, it was time to get drunk on dark, sweet smelling, smooth and balanced Irish made beer. And by get drunk I mean take one tiny sip from the sensory rooms free sample.
Why the Guinness Storehouse? Because nothing says Ireland more than drinking beer in a pub on a Monday night (seriously, weekdays are just as busy as weekends out on the town) and every lad and lass will be drinking a Guinness.
We had a brief moment of, “eh – do we really want to go? Neither of us drink beer?” But oh boy O’berto I’m so glad we didn’t skip. This was a great experience for anyone. Even kids, just don’t give them your beer. Or maybe do. I don’t judge.
The tour goes through a series of self guided levels showcasing the brewing process, the history, the passion in the product, but the coolest by far was the sensory room. I’m not a beer drinker, but the sensory room tickled my food/drink/science loving soul.
Plus, free samples.
You walk into a room that smells like sweet candy mixed with cocoa. Here you learn how to properly “taste the beer” and although I don’t care much for the flavor, I appreciated the art and science of it all. We all have a niche, mine just happens to be the science of coffee.
The storehouse is huge, and we spent a solid couple hours here (not including our post touring feast in one of the onsite restaurants, where our adorably kind waiter sold my friend on the Guinness infused cheese sauce.)
Your ticket comes with a free pint of beer, but neither of us partook.
Despite passing on the free beer, we still went to the Gravity Bar on the very top level. From here you’re met with a panoramic view of the city. It was beautiful. I was able to locate the spire in the city center, and realized just how far we walked.
Or maybe it just felt far because I had to ask five people for directions on the way there. Regardless, this satisfied my travel tip from the previous post. I loved asking for directions.
After hours of exploring the inner city tourist attractions, it was time to venture to the outskirts of Dublin. My next post will share why I believe it’s imperative to ask the locals where to explore.
Travel tip: Wear comfortable shoes. The best way to explore Dublin is by foot.