20 Reasons Why You Should Visit Dublin In 2024
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People planning a trip to Ireland always ask the same questions: is Dublin worth visiting? Is it that nice? Does it represent authentic Ireland? And, of course, why does it always rain and why do people only go to pubs? These questions dominate because Dublin has become a popular destination for mass tourism, often seen as a pit stop before exploring the stunning countryside or just for its lively nightlife, which is among the most exciting in Europe.
However, after numerous visits to Ireland, I arrived in Dublin almost 15 years ago, intending to stay for only a month. Yet, we ended up extending our stay to 6 months, and now, more than a decade later, my partner and I still call Dublin home. Therefore, I’d like to share why I love Dublin and believe you should visit regardless of what travel guides or blogs suggest.
At the end of the day, nothing is perfect anywhere in the world, but if you choose to visit Dublin, you’ll see a city that continually invents and reinvents itself with its unique beauty. Despite the stereotypes, Dublin has become one of the most beloved and visited cities worldwide. And, while I might discourage moving here, that’s another story for another day.
As a local, I want to share my passion for this city with you and provide 20 reasons why you should visit Dublin in 2024 or at least once in your lifetime. Join me on this journey to discover the best things to see, eat, and experience in Dublin, all from the perspective of someone who calls this city home.
“When I die, Dublin will be written on my heart” – James Joyce
20 reasons why you should visit Dublin
The Dubliners and the Irish
It’s no secret that the Irish are renowned for their warm and welcoming nature, which is one reason why they’re considered among the happiest people in Europe and the world. The proverbial Irish welcome is not a myth but a reality that can be experienced just by strolling the streets of Dublin or any other Irish city.
If you’re lost or need assistance, someone will undoubtedly offer help without hesitation. Whether ordering a beer in a pub or exploring the city’s sights, locals will initiate a conversation and make you feel at home. The friendliness and kindness of the Irish people are invaluable assets that shouldn’t be overlooked.
Overall, the Irish’s willingness to lend a hand and show kindness to strangers is a significant factor in making Ireland a desirable destination for travelers worldwide. Don’t be surprised if you leave with newfound friends and fond memories of the Emerald Isle.
Dublin’s Literary Roots
Dublin has a rich literary history, where you can find traces of renowned writers such as James Joyce, Jonathan Swift, Samuel Beckett, Oscar Wilde, and the more contemporary Maeve Binchy. These writers have either set their stories in Dublin or have been inspired by the city to create their literary masterpieces.
Whether following in Leopold Bloom’s footsteps from Joyce’s Ulysses or visiting the Dublin Writers Museum to learn more about the city’s literary past, Dublin has something for every book lover. One of the best times to experience this literary heritage is during Bloomsday, a day dedicated to the celebration of James Joyce’s Ulysses, held on June 16th every year.
So if you’re a fan of literature, Dublin is a must-visit destination. Explore the city’s streets and landmarks and discover the literary roots that run deep in Dublin’s culture and history.
Ireland’s Culinary Scene: More Than Just Potatoes and Stews
The stereotype that the nation’s cuisine is limited to potatoes, stews, and fish remains in the collective imagination in Ireland. However, Ireland has undergone a culinary renaissance in recent years and has become an interesting food and wine culture player. Irish chefs are gaining international recognition, and the country hosts various annual events celebrating its food culture. Restaurants in Ireland experiment with local and seasonal ingredients sourced with great care and attention to quality.
Dublin, in particular, offers a wide range of food choices that cater to various tastes. You will be spoilt for choice if you are looking for non-Irish cuisine. However, Irish butter deserves a special mention. Once you have tasted the creamy, salty, and full-bodied Irish butter, you will never be able to go back to ordinary butter. It is an experience that will stay with you long after your holiday in Dublin and Ireland.
Dublin’s Proximity to the Sea and River Liffey
One of Dublin’s many charms is its location on the sea, allowing residents and visitors to escape the chaos and unwind by the water in just a few minutes. Even those living in the heart of the city can find solace near the sea within a short distance from their doorstep.
Alternatively, the River Liffey is another option for those seeking tranquillity within the city limits. Cities with a river always have a unique charm, and Dublin is no exception. The Liffey runs through the city centre and offers a calming oasis for anyone looking to take a stroll, relax by the riverbank, or enjoy a meal.
Discovering Dublin’s Authentic Pub Music Scene
While Temple Bar may be one of Dublin’s most famous areas for pubs and nightlife, many other local pubs in the city are just as enjoyable and authentic. It’s said that there are 365 pubs in Dublin, one for every day of the year!
One of the highlights of Dublin’s pub scene is the Seisiun, where local musicians play traditional Irish music in a cosy and intimate setting away from the tourist crowds. These traditional pubs offer a unique experience that truly captures the spirit of Dublin’s culture.
Once the music starts playing, it’s hard not to feel the rhythm and dance with the locals. So, forget about the tourist hotspots and explore the local pub scene in Dublin for an authentic and memorable experience. With an abundance of local pubs and traditional music, there are plenty of opportunities to experience the true essence of Dublin’s culture and traditions. So, grab a pint and immerse yourself in the authentic pub scene of Dublin!
If you are going to be in Dublin for New Year’s Eve, check out our article on the best events to experience in Dublin on New Year’s Eve.
Dublin’s Rich Historical Legacy: Kilmainham Gaol and the GPO
Dublin has a deep and complex history that reflects the story of a nation and its people. Today, the national identity remains a crucial part of Dublin’s cultural fabric, and the city takes pride in preserving historical monuments linked to the country’s struggle for independence.
One monument you should not miss is Kilmainham Gaol, the infamous prison where many of the country’s dissidents were held during the war for independence. The prison is now a museum that offers a poignant glimpse into the lives of those who fought for their country’s freedom.
Another significant historical landmark in Dublin is the General Post Office (GPO) on O’Connell Street, which played a pivotal role in the independence movement. The GPO was the headquarters of the 1916 Easter Rising, a significant event in Irish history that led to the country’s eventual independence. Dublin’s rich historical legacy is a testament to the resilience and determination of the Irish people. The city’s monuments and landmarks, such as Kilmainham Gaol and the GPO, provide a fascinating insight into the country’s past and are not to be missed by anyone visiting the city.
Dublin’s Connection to U2: A Complicated Relationship
U2 and Dublin have a complex and sometimes conflicting relationship deeply ingrained in the city’s cultural fabric. While some Irish people are opposed to the band’s commercial success and global fame, there is no denying the impact that U2 has had on Dublin’s music scene and the city’s cultural identity.
U2’s connection to Dublin runs deep, with the band hailing from the city and many of their songs being inspired by Dublin’s streets and people. The band’s iconic music has become a part of the city’s cultural landscape, with many of their lyrics and album covers featuring Dublin landmarks.
However, U2’s success has also been controversial in Dublin, with some critics arguing that the band has lost touch with their Irish roots in pursuit of commercial success. Nevertheless, U2’s connection to Dublin remains essential to the city’s cultural identity, and the band’s music continues to inspire and resonate with people worldwide.
U2’s relationship with Dublin is complicated and often contradictory, but there is no denying the band’s impact on the city’s cultural heritage. From their iconic music to their influence on Dublin’s music scene, U2 and Dublin are intrinsically linked and will remain an essential part of the city’s cultural fabric for years.
If you are a u2 fan, visit our article on the u2 places to visit in Dublin.
Dublin’s Theatrical Scene: A Blend of Classic and Experimental Performances
Dublin’s rich literary and musical traditions are also reflected in the city’s theatrical scene, which offers a broad and diverse range of performances. Dublin’s theatrical offerings will surely captivate audiences from classical shows held at the Gaiety Theater to experimental performances at the Abbey Theater.
The Gaiety Theater has been a classic venue entertaining Dublin audiences since 1871. It’s grand auditorium and stunning decor make it a popular destination for those seeking traditional theatrical experiences.
On the other hand, the Abbey Theater is an experimental venue that has been at the forefront of Dublin’s cultural activities for over a century. The theatre offers a mix of traditional and contemporary performances, making it a popular destination for those seeking something different.
Discovering the Beauty of Dublin’s Surrounding Areas
Dublin’s charm extends beyond the city limits, with many beautiful destinations just a short trip away. Within 30 minutes by DART or fast train, you can explore stunning places easily visited in just one day.
One such destination is Howth, with its breathtaking cliffs offering stunning sea views. Bray and its bay are popular destinations, offering scenic walks and picturesque views. The Wicklow Mountains and Glendalough are other must-see destinations that showcase the beauty of Ireland’s natural landscape.
Whether you rent a car or travel by public transport, Dublin’s surrounding areas offer a chance to escape the hustle and bustle of the city and immerse yourself in the true beauty of Irish nature.
Exploring Dublin’s Untouched Areas: The Liberties
While Dublin is a bustling and modern city, some areas still have retained their traditional charm and character. One such area is the Liberties, located in the northern part of the city.
The Liberties is characterized by its cobbled streets, low houses, and old industrial architecture, which harks back to the past. It is one of the popular areas of Dublin, kept alive by volunteers and neighbourhood associations who work tirelessly to preserve its identity and heritage.
The area is home to a network of new and artisanal whiskey distilleries, which are bringing the flourishing industry of the 19th century back to life. The Liberties was once a world producer and exporter of whiskey, and today, these distilleries are reviving that proud tradition.
The Liberties is a hidden gem in Dublin, where visitors can explore an area still untouched by modernity and see the city’s past come to life. The preservation of the area’s identity and heritage, along with the revival of the whiskey industry, is a testament to the passion and dedication of the people who call The Liberties home.
Dublin’s Creative Scene: A Breeding Ground for Talent
Dublin’s cultural scene is not just limited to music and literature but also extends to art and creativity. The city has become a hub for talent in various sectors, and its Creative Quarter in the Powerscourt area is a testament to this.
The Creative Quarter is a vibrant area that showcases the best of Dublin’s artistic and creative talent. It is home to numerous art galleries, studios, and boutiques, which offer visitors a chance to immerse themselves in the city’s creative energy.
The area is a breeding ground for emerging talent, with many up-and-coming artists, designers, and entrepreneurs launching their careers from here. Its picturesque streets and stunning architecture provide a perfect backdrop for creativity and inspiration.
Dublin’s Passion for Gaelic Football and Rugby
While football may be the most popular sport in many parts of the world, in Dublin and throughout Ireland, Gaelic football and rugby capture the hearts of the nation. Gaelic football, in particular, is the national sport of Ireland and is played by children and even girls across the country.
What makes Gaelic football unique is the community spirit that surrounds it. Unlike professional football, players do not get paid for playing, and the sport is played purely for the love of the game. This community spirit is evident in the thousands of fans who flock to Croke Park to watch the game, creating an electric atmosphere that is simply unmissable.
Rugby is another popular sport in Dublin, with the city being home to the Leinster Rugby team. The team has a solid fan base and regularly competes in the top European rugby competitions.
While football may be the most popular sport in many parts of the world, Dublin and Ireland’s passion lies in Gaelic football and rugby. The community spirit surrounding these sports and the electric atmosphere at matches make them a must-see for anyone visiting the city.
Dublin’s Vibrant Street Art Scene
Dublin’s streets are a canvas for artists worldwide, with street art popping up in every city corner. From the vibrant murals in the Camden and Liberties areas to the lesser-known gems in Love Lane, and Temple Bar, Dublin’s street art scene is a testament to the city’s creative energy.
The city inspires creativity, and the street art movement continues to grow daily. Artists from different backgrounds and cultures come to Dublin to showcase their talents, and the city’s streets provide a perfect backdrop for their work.
Street art is not just about adding colour to the city’s streets but also reflects the city’s identity and culture. It is a form of self-expression that challenges the notion that everything is always grey in Dublin.
Dublin’s Beautiful Skies: Sunsets and Sunrises
After spending years in Ireland, no sky is more beautiful than the Irish sky. Dublin’s sunsets and sunrises are breathtaking, adding a touch of magic to the city despite its grey and rainy weather.
The sky over Dublin is a canvas of colours, from the pinks and oranges of the sunsets to the soft blues and purples of the sunrises. These stunning displays of nature’s beauty provide peace and tranquillity in the bustling city. They are a reminder of the beauty that can be found even amid a busy urban environment.
Exploring Dublin by Foot
Dublin is a city that can be easily explored on foot without needing a car or taxi. This may seem minor, but it is a significant advantage compared to other cities like London, Rome, or Milan.
In Dublin, getting from one point to another on foot is a breeze, immersing visitors in the city’s unique atmosphere. Walking around Dublin’s streets, visitors can discover hidden gems, stumble upon beautiful architecture, and soak up the city’s history and culture at their own pace.
Dublin’s compact size and pedestrian-friendly streets make exploring the city’s many attractions and landmarks easy. From the historic Trinity College to the bustling Grafton Street, there is always something to discover on foot in Dublin.
Dublin’s Beautiful Parks: Oases in the City
Dublin is a city full of beautiful parks, providing visitors with a much-needed break from the hustle and bustle of urban life. From the central Stephen’s Green to the farthest Phoenix Park, not to mention Merrion Square and the lesser-known Iveagh, Dublin’s parks offer a variety of green spaces where visitors can stroll, relax, and soak up some sun.
Parks are essential to any city, providing a place for visitors to escape from the concrete jungle and immerse themselves in nature. Dublin’s parks are no exception, offering a peaceful oasis in the city’s heart where visitors can unwind and recharge.
In addition to providing a break from the city, Dublin’s parks are also full of history and culture. From the historic Phoenix Park, home to the official residence of the Irish president, to the picturesque Merrion Square, famous for its Georgian architecture and colourful doors, there is always something to discover in Dublin’s parks.
Dublin’s Love for Guinness: More Than Just a Beer
No trip to Dublin would be complete without trying the city’s most famous export: Guinness. While the Guinness Storehouse is a popular tourist attraction, the real heart of Guinness can be found in the city’s pubs and bars, where locals have been enjoying the “black stuff” for centuries.
For the people of Dublin, Guinness is more than just a beer; it symbolizes the city’s rich cultural heritage and strong community spirit. The Guinness culture is deeply ingrained in Dublin’s history and society and is integral to the city’s uniqueness.
Despite being a multinational corporation, Guinness remains integral to Dublin’s identity and represents the city’s stable and confident society. The people of Dublin have a special relationship with Guinness, which visitors can experience firsthand by visiting the city’s pubs and bars.
Guinness is more than just a beer in Dublin; it represents its rich cultural heritage and strong community spirit. From the city’s pubs and bars to its history and society, Guinness is an integral part of what makes Dublin such a special and unique city.
Dublin’s Attachment to Tradition: Embracing Local Culture
Despite being a multi-ethnic and multicultural city, Dublin remains deeply attached to its Irish roots and traditions. The bond between Dublin and Ireland is strong, and many initiatives aim to promote and enhance local products, from food and wine to art and culture.
In recent years, there has been a growing interest in local and traditional products as the people of Dublin seek to maintain their connection to Irish culture and heritage in the face of changing times. This trend can be seen in the city’s thriving food and wine scene, where local ingredients and flavours are celebrated and promoted.
Dublin’s attachment to tradition can also be seen in the city’s art and culture scene, where local artists and performers are given a platform to showcase their talents. From traditional Irish music to contemporary art, Dublin’s cultural scene celebrates the city’s rich heritage and diverse community.
Discovering Hidden Gems in Dublin: Beyond the Surface
Dublin is a city full of hidden gems and local places that can only be discovered by living there. These places offer a unique glimpse into the city’s rich history and culture and are often off the radar of mainstream tourism.
One such hidden gem is a private vintage club, where visitors can enjoy cocktails in an atmosphere that evokes the 1950s. This exclusive venue is a true hidden gem, offering a glimpse into the city’s vibrant nightlife scene.
Another hidden gem in Dublin is Sweny’s, a small pharmacy featured in James Joyce’s Ulysses. Today, Sweny’s is a cultural centre that hosts daily readings of the novel, allowing visitors to immerse themselves in the world of Joyce and his iconic characters.
In addition to these hidden gems, Dublin is full of cultural and theatrical events often off the radar of mainstream tourism. From local art exhibitions to small theatre performances, something is always happening in Dublin that is worth discovering.
Ireland’s Unpredictable Weather: Experiencing Four Seasons in a Day in Dublin
Ireland is known for its unpredictable weather, and visitors to Dublin may experience all four seasons in a single day. This unique phenomenon can be amusing and frustrating, but it is an integral part of the Irish experience.
One moment, the sun may shine, the sky may be blue, and the next, a sudden rain shower may drench you. This can be followed by a gust of wind that makes you feel like you are in the middle of a winter storm. And just when you think you’ve seen it all, the sun may come out again and warm your face.
Despite the unpredictability, experiencing all four seasons in a day is a unique and unforgettable experience that can only be found in Ireland. It is a testament to the country’s natural beauty and diverse landscape and adds to the charm and character of Dublin and its surrounding areas.
Is Dublin Worth Visiting?
Dublin has become increasingly popular among tourists in recent years. The city has seen a massive influx of visitors over the past decade, and the trend shows no signs of slowing down. This is something that Dubliners are thrilled to see. Despite being an expensive city with [very often] poor weather, Dublin is worth a visit for tourists. The town offers a unique atmosphere that can’t be found anywhere else in Europe. It is also an excellent base for exploring the stunning Irish countryside, with many scenic destinations just a short trip away.
Valuable Resources For Anybody Visiting Dublin
If you’re planning a trip to Dublin, here are some valuable resources to help you make the most of your visit:
Skyscanner: The best tool for booking flights to Dublin.
Booking.com: The best tool for booking accommodation in Dublin.
GetYourGuide: The best tool for booking experiences and tours in Dublin and Ireland
Visit Dublin: The official Tourist Office of Dublin, where you can find information and resources.
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