As Ireland’s capital for more than 1,000 years now, there is no question that there is something special about Dublin. It’s not a very big surprise, then, that this seaside city – which has had intimate ties to the ocean since its inception – is bursting at its seams with amazing sightseeing opportunities. The River Liffey runs smack down the center of this city of approximately 1.6 million people, and whether you choose to spend time at the Dublin Castle, on an historical walk through the city’s key sights – or choose to just kick back and enjoy a pint at a local pub – you’re bound to be enraptured by this unforgettable place.
Sightseeing & Things To Do
By getting off your ship when it docks in Dublin, you can discover why this ancient capital of Ireland continues to charm and draw in tourists each and every year. Indeed, the popularity of Dublin as a tourist destination grows stronger all the time. A quick look around will surely be enough to make you a lifelong fan of this eclectic, multifaceted Irish city. Eat, drink and be merry in one of Europe’s most historic – and friendly – cities.
There’s no possible way to experience even a fraction of what Dublin has to offer during a brief cruise stopover. However, by strategically planning for your visit you can squeeze as much excitement in as possible. Think about stopping by one of the following:
This remarkable castle was built back in the year 1204 and has been a dominating part of the city skyline ever since. During a popular 45-minute tour of the premises, you can learn a great deal about the history of Dublin and of Ireland in general. You’ll be guided through many different areas of the castle, and will come away with a greater appreciation for the history of this city.
The National Gallery
Soak up a little bit of culture by stopping in at Dublin’s premier art museum. Works Monet, Picasso and Rubens are all on display here, along with many other excellent exhibits. Be sure to check out the Jack Yeats gallery; this Ireland native was a true blue talent.
Stroll St. Stephens Green
As large and bustling as Dublin may be, like many other major cities it does have a small slice of nature built right in. St. Stephens Green was built by the famous Guinness family, sprawls over 22 acres and – because it was built all the way back in 1664 – is Ireland’s oldest park.
Discover Dublin’s prime party and pub-crawling scene by heading over to its Temple Bar neighborhood. Featuring cobblestone streets and narrow, winding lanes, Temple Bar is one area that you won’t mind getting lost in for a little bit.
Ask anyone in Dublin and they’ll agree: Grafton Street is the place to be if you’re in the mood for some serious shopping. Stretching between Trinity College and St. Stephens Green, this street boasts all of Dublin’s best and largest department stores. Beyond the large and showy stores, though, Grafton Street has its fair share of smaller, more intimate shops and boutiques. Along the way, you can stop in for refreshments at any number of small cafes, restaurants and pubs.
Best Souvenir To Bring Back To the Cruise Ship
Hand-knit woolen items are in abundance all over Dublin, and they make for great souvenirs to remember your visit by. Whether you choose a nice cap, a pair of mittens, a scarf – or anything else imaginable – you’ll look back fondly on your time in Dublin whenever you decide to wear your special purchase.
Eating – Sample the Local Cuisine
In Ireland – and especially in Dublin – food is hearty, filling, hot and delicious. You can fuel up for a day of nonstop sightseeing by trying out some of the ever-popular bangers and mash. Featuring mashed potatoes and sausages, this is something that you can find at virtually any restaurant in Dublin. In terms of drinks, it simply wouldn’t do to visit Dublin without sipping a bit of Guinness ale. By trying out these two local delicacies, you’ll honestly be able to say that you experienced some of the best food that Dublin has to offer.
When, Where, and How
When To Go
Generally speaking, July and August are the best months to visit Dublin. That’s when the weather is warmest and you don’t have to worry about bundling up at all. However, April and May are equally pleasant; September is another very good time to come. All said, by being prepared for any kind of weather you can visit Dublin any time of year.
Where You’re Docked
Cruise ships dock at the Maritime House, North Wall Quay; this is in a largely industrial part of Dublin, so a cab ride over to the center of town will be necessary. Fortunately, that journey is brief and you’ll be seeing the sights in no time.
Which Cruise Ships Go Here?
Many of the largest cruise lines have itineraries that include stops at Dublin. A few of the larger cruise lines that stop in Dublin are Cunard, Royal Caribbean, P & O Cruises and Fred Olsen Cruise Lines. However, there are many other options available in terms of ships, dates, days in port and at sea when it comes to Dublin.