St Patrick's Cathedral, Dublin

14 hours in Dublin

After a pleasant journey via train and ferry we had made our way to Dublin. We arrived around 5pm and were quite tired from the late nights and early mornings we had on our short stay with friends in London. But weary eyes and sore feet were not going to get in our way, we only had 14 hours in Dublin (including sleeping time) and we were going to make the most of it.

We dumped our things at Abigail’s Hostel, grabbed a free map and headed towards the Temple Bar district. We hadn’t done much reading on Dublin but what little literature we had looked over, Temple Bar had been mentioned. It was a 2 minute walk from the hostel to the area and since it was filled with pubs and restaurants we thought we would save it to the end of our evening’s tour.

Using the landmarked sites on the free map as our guide, we walked around the nearby streets to see whatever we could in the dwindling daylight. We passed some beautiful old churches and buildings, generally made out of stone. Dublin was a surprisingly quaint, clean and nice looking city but I couldn’t help feel its residents were the poorer, dumber, drunker cousins of big city Londoners. Perhaps it was all the crazy drunk homeless people we saw that gave me that impression, or maybe it was the guy that walked past us with blood seeping out the cut on his forehead. Regardless, the locals were a colourful bunch – although they surprisingly didn’t make me feel too unsafe.

As the sunlight diminished and our tummies rumbled we realised it was nearing 10pm so we headed back to the Temple Bar area for dinner. Day time travelling often means no real meals and today was no exception, so we were quite hungry and looking for a good feed. Luckily many of the pubs were offering 3 course menus at “early bird” prices and the pub we settled one came with some great food choices. Soup, bruschetta and delicious burgers filled us up, but then we were privledged to yummy icecream and Baileys flavoured cheesecake. Bellies full we headed back to the hostel, satisfied with the what we had seen in the little time we had in Dublin.

While our stay in Dublin was the shortest of our European trip, it was a great stopover and I really enjoyed my time there. As much as I’m sure there is more to do in the city, I think I would be more likely to return to Ireland to explore some of the Emerald Isle’s gorgeous countryside.