Dublin, Ireland

Guide for the rail traveller

Information

CurrencyEuro
Local languageEnglish
Country Ireland

Introduction

Originally a Viking settlement Dublin, located in the Province of Leinster, sits on the banks of the River Liffey. Despite its small size more than one million people reside here. The Republic of Ireland’s capital is booming, with business on the rise and tourists arriving in ever increasing numbers to experience this intoxicating city. The stunning economic prosperity in recent years is partly due to the hard fought for funding from the EU as well as the determination of its inhabitants, who for much of the twentieth century have had to battle religious and political unrest. Wandering along the streets you will get a sense of its rich history and you can enjoy the many atmospheric pubs as well as Dublin’s green parks.

The River Liffey divides Dublin into north and south most of the sights being located on the south side around Grafton Street and St Stephenson’s Green, otherwise known as the ‘Georgian heart of Dublin’. The northside city center is somewhat grittier containing many shopping streets. It is best explored starting from O’Connell Street and heading for Parnell Square.

Dublin may not abound in visually stunning buildings however the sheer round-the-clock liveliness, the insatiable party atmosphere and its non-stop entertainment make a visit to this city unforgettable. Furthermore, the uniqueness of a true Dublin pub experience will have you coming back for more again and again.

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Things to do

Sightseeing by foot is easy, starting at O’Connell Bridge (which is wider than it is long!) and heading down Westmoreland Street to Parliament House (now the Bank of Ireland) with its grand façade of marble columns it is an impressive sight. Next continue on to Trinity College Irelands oldest and most famous college with many illustrious alumni. Make sure you visit the College Library where you may view the Book of Kells, a manuscript dating back to around AD800. If you head to Merrion Square you arrive at the National Gallery, containing an impressive collection comprising of some 2500 paintings with admission remaining free of charge. Still south of the river the historic cathedrals Christ Church and St Patrick’s are two of the most striking buildings in Dublin. Dublin Castle is just of Dame Street where guided tours are offered. Lastly Temple Bar, with its narrow, cobbled, pedestrianized streets is the playing ground of this city with one bar, pub and restaurant after another.

When heading north of the river cross over the Ha’penny Bridge which provides the fastest route to the thriving Mary and Henry Street shopping districts. Extending over 370feet along the River Liffey the Customs House is the city’s most impressive Georgian building. Meanwhile the façade of the General Post Office still bears the scars of bullets from the Easter Monday Rising in 1916.

In westernmost Dublin you will find one of the city’s most popular attractions namely the Guinness Brewery located on Crane Street. For some leafy greenery visit Europe’s largest public park; Phoenix Park.

Local transport

Dublin’s public transport consists mainly of a bus network and the speedy electrical DART (Dublin Area Rapid Transit) rail service. You can purchase your ticket on the bus or at the bus ticket agencies. Daily, weekly and monthly passes are available. If you wish to cycle visit www.cycleways.com for information but beware, as central Dublin doesn’t have cycle paths.

Day trips

The James Joyce Museum housed in the Martello Tower is located 14km (9 miles) south of Dublin. It is easily reached along a scenic trail by DART to Sandycove. Alternatively an idyllic journey on the St Kevin’s Bus Service takes you through the valleys of Wicklow Mountain to Glendalough an early Celtic monastery.

A good way to see the surrounding country is by taking a trip to Cork. Taking approximately 2 hours and 20 minutes on the train it is slightly further away but well worth visiting. It is the second largest city in Ireland and has many attractions and sights to offer.

Recommended places and events to visit in Dublin

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