If you’ve only got 24 hours in Dublin you sure can pack in a lot! Ireland’s capital – the home of Guinness, the world renowned Trinity College, Molly Malone, Kilmainham Gaol and the famous Book of Kells. Sure, it rains a lot here, but don’t let this stop you from taking a visit to the Emerald Isle and discovering what it’s lively capital has to offer! Come see what you can get up to in 24 hours in Dublin in this 1 day Dublin itinerary!
24 HOURS IN DUBLIN
The Old Library at Trinity College is one of the most impressive libraries in the world with 200,000 books. It has the rights to a copy of every book published in Ireland and UK. This place is the inspiration for the Hogwarts Library but is even more impressive in real life. I was absolutely blown away. The Library holds the famous Book of Kells – the World’s most famous medieval manuscript from 800AD. It contains the 4 gospels written in Latin and has lavish intricate artwork and bright colours (no photos allowed!).
The Old Library also holds one of the few remaining copies of the 1916 Proclamation of the Irish Republic. It is ridiculously packed during the day so get tickets for the last entrance of the day (4.30pm) and stay right until 5pm closing to appreciate it with far less people whilst also getting charged the cheaper off-peak entrance fee of €11 as opposed to €14. Click here for tickets.
Dublin has some of the finest examples of Georgian architecture. Look on any postcard of Dublin and you will see the “Doors of Dublin” – iconic brightly painted Georgian doors in every single colour! The legend goes that the women started to paint their doors different colours because their husbands kept coming home drunk and forgetting which house was theirs. Therefore the women would paint the doors different colours to make sure their husbands ended up in the right bed at the end of the night! Another story tells how England told Irish citizens to paint their doors black in mourning after the death of Queen Elizabeth, but the Irish rebelled and painted the doors in bright colours instead. Whichever story is true, I like them both as it shows the good ol’ Irish humour we all love!
A short walk from Trinity College is Merrion Square – a beautifully elegant Georgian garden square built in the late 18th century, surrounded by Georgian houses with vibrantly coloured doors. Many of the houses have plaques giving information of famous people who once lived there, such as Oscar Wilde, W.B.Yeats and Daniel O’Connell. There are lots of other beautiful Georgian squares around with cool doors – be sure to check out Fitzwilliam Square and St Stephens Green too (next to Grafton Street). Many of the houses, most of which are offices now, are covered with ivy and are simply beautiful. I don’t know about you but I could spend all day here!
Howth Coastal Walk
When the sun is shining in Ireland, which let’s face it, ain’t every day, head out of the city and explore the beautiful scenery around the Emerald Isle. Less than 30 minutes by train from Dublin City centre is Howth, a gorgeous fishing village with possibly the best fish and chips on the planet, making it a popular place amongst locals.
Do the Howth coastal walk around the peninsula for absolutely breathtaking views over the Irish Sea and Dublin Bay. The walk is an easy 6km loop and takes around 2 hours, although it may take you longer if you are like me and like to hang off the edge of the cliffs for a photo (see below). The cliffs are really spectacular, it was hard to believe I was really in Ireland!
To reach the coastal walk, just walk along the seafront and you’ll find the path. If you’re struggling though, ask any of the friendly locals and they’ll point you in the right direction!
There are plenty of pubs to relax in after the walk and even a couple of secluded beaches where people were sunbathing. Right next to the train station is Howth market, a cute artisan market with local products and international food.
Alternative 24 Hours in Dublin Options
If the weather is not great and you are looking for other ways to spend your 24 hours in Dublin, how about heading to Kilmainham Gaol – Dublin’s Old County Jail where many Irish revolutionaries, including the leaders of the 1916 Easter Rising, were imprisoned and executed by the orders of the UK Government. Entry is by tour only and tickets need to be purchased in advance – click here to book.
If you want to experience some of the famous Dublin nightlife head to Temple Bar – the street where you’ll find lots of bars. Albeit it’s very touristy but there is a great atmosphere round here both during the day and in the evenings.
Alternatively if you are looking to do a day trip from Dublin, a visit to the Wicklow Mountains is an absolute must!
If you’re looking for other 24 Hour Guides to other cities, check them out here!
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