About Dublin

Dublin is divided by the River Liffey: North and South. Both sides are similar but the south side has the Government buildings, Trinity College, most of the National museums, and is considered to be more posh!

For a walk around the city start at the corner of Parnell St. and O'Connell St.  Since the influx of foreigners in the 1990s, Parnell St. has become the most multi-cultural part of Dublin city with lots of restaurants and shops from Asia, Africa and Eastern Europe.  Walk up Parnell Square and have a quick look at The Garden of Remembrance, dedicated to the memory of "all those who gave their lives in the cause of Irish Freedom". It's got a water pond in the shape of a cross and a statue with The Children of Lir who are being turned into swans. It's a story from Irish mythology!

Beside it there's the Modern Art Gallery which is small and personally I don't like it very much, but it's free.  There's also the Writer's Museum which has a little history about Irish authors / playrights, but you should pay around 8euro to enter and it's not worth the visit if you don't have much time in Dublin.

Continue around Parnell Square and down the Hill.  You'll see the Rotunda Hospital on the left (where I was born!)  Opposite is Moore Street where there's a traditional fruit, veg, and fish market.  After here you're on Henry Street which is a good place for shopping!   Walk back to O'Connell St. and in the centre there is the Spire, which was built for the 2000 years celebrations.  At the corner there is the famous G.P.O. which is a very important historical building where The Irish Declaration of Independence was declared in 1916.
On the other side of O'Connell St. there's a statue of James Joyce.

Walk to O'Connell bridge, look to the right and you'll see the Ha'Penny bridge, which received its name from the half-penny toll people used to pay to cross the river in the past!

Walk straight ahead and you come to Trinity College, which is the most important University in Ireland.  You can walk around it and visit the Book of Kells and the Old Library.  The book of Kells is the oldest book in ireland and the Library is quite nice with Ireland's oldest Harp and things like that to see.  It costs about €8, but if you can find a student and ask them nicely, maybe they can get you in for free because they can get 3-4 people in free with their student cards.  I used to do it all the time for people when I was a student there.

Walk out the Arts Block Exit of Trinity and turn left.  After 100m there is the National Art Gallery of Ireland.  It's got a beautiful painting of Caravaggio among many other paintings.  It's beside a park called Merrion Square with a statue of Oscar Wilde.  Free entrance.

Nearby on Dawson Street there is the National Museum of Ireland which has many interesting artifacts from back in the Stone Age right up to the 20th century.  It's very interesting, and free to enter.

Also very close is St. Stephen's Green Park, which is nice for a walk.  Then go to Grafton St, another important place for shopping!  Try some coffee or chocolate from Butler's Cafe!  When you arrive back at the end of Grafton Street there's a statue of Molly Malone.  She is famous for a song:

In Dublin's fair city,

Where the girls are so pretty,
I first set my eyes on sweet Molly Malone,
As she wheeled her wheel-barrow,
Through streets broad and narrow,
Crying, "Cockles and mussels, alive, alive, oh!"

Walk to Dame Street and then visit Temple Bar.  This area is the most cultural part of Dublin with lots of young artistic people.  But it is also the most touristic part with lots of restaurants and bars.  Several bars have live music and are nice to visit here for a quick pint of our national drink: Guinness!

Go back to Dame Street and walk west.  You will find Dublin Castle  on the left which is nice to walk around.  You can take a tour for about €5.  There's also a museum there with a huge collection of Oriental artifacts from China and Japan.  This museum is free.

Continue up Dame Street and you come to the oldest part of Dublin and you will see Christ Church Cathedral and Dublinia museum. It's quite interesting too and you can get a combination ticket to see both together.  Dublinia Museum has a lot of artifacts from the Viking era, and is nicely presented.

From outside Christchurch or anywhere on Dame Street, you can get bus number 123 which takes you directly back to the Marathon venue!