Latest posts by Glenn Beg (see all)
- 10 Unusual Things to Do in Dublin - January 2, 2018
- 10 Dublin Festivals to Visit in 2018 - December 18, 2017
- Cultural Activities in Dublin this Autumn & Winter (2017) - October 14, 2017
When you come to Dublin, it is so easy to settle for doing the most typical touristy things, like going to the Temple Bar, sipping a pint of Guinness and buying a leprechaun hat. However, Dublin has much more to offer. Here’s my top 10 list of things that you were probably not even aware that you could do in Ireland’s capital city.
1. Eat a Tayto Sandwich
There are potato crisps and then there are Tayto’s. If Ireland has a national food then it quite possibly could be these blue and red bags of cheese and onion awesomeness. Get some fresh bread with butter and fill it with Tayto’s. And here you have the ultimate Irish comfort food.
2. Visit the Little Museum of Dublin
Possibly Ireland’s finest museum, the “Little Museum of Dublin” is filled with items donated by ordinary people. It’s more focused on the social history of Dublin as opposed to the usual politics and classical art found in other museums.
It became so popular that nowadays you may even have to book your tickets in advance. Also, music fans will not be disappointed by the U2 section, which tells the story of Ireland’s most prominent rock band.
3. Go to a Hurling or Gaelic Football Match
Ireland is a sports fanatic country, and its most popular sports are the two games rarely seen outside this island nation. Hurling is the fastest field-game in the world and is somewhat similar to lacrosse, while Gaelic Football has some resemblance to the Aussie Rules. The games are entirely amateur, and players don’t usually get paid. They play for their village and county solely for the pride, honor, and glory.
If you get a chance, catch one of the games at the 82,000 capacity Croke Park in Dublin. Even if there are no games scheduled, the museum located next to the field is fascinating. The Skyline tour along the rooftop of the stadium will give you the best and the scariest view of Dublin that you can wish for.
4. Visit the St Michan’s Church
From the outside, St Michan’s may not look like much – just another city church that you could easily walk by. However, it’s what’s underneath the temple that anyone with a strong stomach and perhaps an interest in the macabre may be interested in.
St Michan’s crypts are open to the public and you can see an 800-year-old mummy amongst others. Legend has it that Bram Stoker’s mother was buried in the graveyard and that the crypts were part of his inspiration for Dracula.
5. Go on the Viking Splash Tour
It’s easy to forget that Dublin is a port city and as such, has a strong Viking history and heritage. Why not channel your inner Viking and go on a Viking tour? Similar to the now discontinued Duck tours in London, in Dublin, you’ll get to wear a Viking helmet and practice your Viking roars at unsuspected passers-by. Kids will love it.
6. Drink a Pint of Something Other than Guinness
Most people don’t realize that Ireland has more beers then Guinness. Murphy’s and Beamish are two that come from Ireland’s second largest city, Cork, and are often more common the further south in Ireland you go. Ireland’s craft brewery sector is booming as well at the minute.
So when you walk into an Irish pub, don’t order the obvious tourist drink, instead, try something slightly different!
7. Step Inside the Chester Beatty Library
The Chester Beatty Dublin Castle has been voted Europe’s best museum in the past. It’s a fascinating and free place to visit. And, it is particularly renowned for its collection of Islamic and Asian Art. In addition, its Silk Road café with a focus on the Middle Eastern and vegetarian food will give you a taste of something different.
8. Take the Dart
You don’t need to take an expensive tour to get an overview of Dublin’s scenery. The DART is an electric train that runs the entire length of the Dublin coast. The views are spectacular, especially around Killiney. Take a walk at Bray at the end of the line and visit the aquarium, then stretch your legs along the promenade.
9. Go to Jail
Specifically to the Kilmainham Gaol, where the Easter 1916 rebel leaders were imprisoned before many of them were executed. It’s not necessarily the lightest tour, but if you are not aware of modern Irish history, then it would be an eye-opener. The stone-breakers yard, in particular, will give you a pause for thought.
10. Visit the Leprechaun Museum
If you have to give in to the Irish whimsy then, believe it or not, Dublin has its own museum dedicated to the little people. It’s a great place to learn about Ireland’s myths, and legends and kids will definitely love it. Just don’t take it all too serious!