Dublin is a beautiful, compact city with a lot to offer. Failte Ireland the tourism board offers a pass to allow entry to the biggest and best attractions across the city for around 40 Euros a day. Discounts are available on multiple day pass’s if you would like to take your time and enjoy everything Dublin has to offer at your leisure. It is called the Dublin Pass and offers great value. You can have the tickets posted, collect them from Dublin tourist information, or collect them from Dublin Airport (recommend).
You could save as much as 55 Euro on admissions. But it is not just the saving that makes the Dublin Pass a wise holiday purchase, it also allows you to jump entrance Queue’s, benefit from free food and drink and get discounts off restaurant bills and extra services at the attractions.
Here is a Do It All in Dublin one day, hectic Dublin guide, showing you how and where to best spend your time in the charming Irish capital…
Everything marked with [FREE PASS] is, well, free with the Dublin Pass.
[FREE PASS] Dublin Airport to Dublin by AirPort coach, it picks you up outside arrivals in the Airport coach park, the coach will be Big & Blue and easy to spot. If you’re ever lost in Ireland, just ask a local, we are the most friendly people and more than happy to help. If you visit anywhere outside Dublin, say hello! We love to chat with people we have never met before, its a strange thing to get used to when a complete stranger tells you what he’s been up to today hahaha.
Get off at Grafton street, visit Temple bar (signposted) just behind the central bank, Everybody that comes to Dublin, HAS to visit Temple Bar, there is come great Craic (Irish for fun) at night here, but you will be surrounded by Tourists. The Book of Kells is next to where you get off, located inside Trinity College.
Head west along the main road, adjacent to the river, to the [FREE PASS] Dublin Museum I found it to be a pretty funny Viking and medieval museum after my visit to Temple Bar. [FREE PASS] Christ Church is next door, 1000 years old and also known as The Cathedral of the Holy Trinity. Carry on heading along the same road, west. You will come to [FREE PASS] Dublin Castle on your left, the [FREE PASS] Chester Beatty Library, The Lonely Planets Best of Europe Museum, containing an array of ancient religious books and artefacts, located in the Castle Grounds and the Irish government buildings, including the Irish Assay Office (Where we hide our fabled leprechaun gold). When you leave, if you see a horse-drawn carriage passing by, it will be going to your next destination the [FREE PASS] Guinness Factory, flag a horse-drawn carriage down or take a taxi to rest your feet.
Take a photo at the famous Guinness St James Gate then Pass 300 other Americans queuing outside the [FREE PASS] Guinness Factory, with the pass you get immediate free entry, avoiding at least a 1hr queue. The best pint in Dublin is pulled on the top floor with amazing views of the city. And even better, its FREE dark and delicious. If you prefer you can have a soft drink and enjoy the view of where you’re heading next…
Phoenix Park, it’s huge, you can’t miss it, take a 5 min walk north over the river and take a left. Inside the park, it is another 5 minutes to the Wellington Monument, the biggest obelisk in Europe at 203ft, located on the left. The base is made from melted cannons from the battle of Waterloo, which depict the battle. On the right, the Irish Presidents Residence which Looks like the white house, next to that is Dublin Zoo, which is brilliant, especially for kids (and anybody after a Guinness). The Gorilla enclosure is amazing, there is no glass or barrier! Just a small stream separating you from a giant silverback and his new family. http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Phoenix_Park
Next to your off to the [FREE PASS] Jamesons Whiskey Distillery, all that zoo walking is thirsty work! Best to take a taxi as its a good 20-minute walk east along the River Liffey. If you are good at putting your hand up quickly, you can volunteer for a ‘tasting’ session, where you compare the taste of different whiskey. Funnily enough, they get better the more you drink.
The Jameson factory is next to the famous Half Penny footbridge (drunk photo opportunity) it’s just down the road from the main street in Dublin, O’Connell bridge and The Millennium Spire, built-in 2003 after delays hahaha. It cost 4 million Euros and is ridiculously tall (try looking up at it after having your whiskey) if you are lost in Dub it’s a good point to set as a meetup area, locals affectionately call it the stiffly in the Liffey after the floozie in the Jacuzzi was moved. Wander up from the Jamesons Distillery as there is plenty of Dublin to see on the way, The Spire is next to the General Post Office which is an important historic building, as the last standpoint of ‘Cuchulainn’ remembering the sacrifice of the Irish Volunteers declaring the Irish Republic separate from British rule in the 1916 uprising. You get [FREE PASS] fast track entry to the An Post Museum, where the Irish constitution is on display.
If you like rugby or football, head towards the sea to the brand new Aviva stadium for a tour. On the way, along the River Liffey you can stop to visit the [FREE PASS] Famine Ship Museum, its a tall wooden ship docked on the quays, you won’t miss it. If you want to see real Irish sport north from the spire is Croke Park, the home of Irish GAA, the spiritual home of Gaelic Football and Hurling the 4th biggest stadium in Europe and a great rooftop walk, good fun even if you don’t like sports, they clip you on so don’t worry about your Jamesons legs haha. After your tour, head back to O’Connells bridge.
You can stroll south over O’Connell bridge (just follow the crowd) walk past the sculpture of Molly Malone, (photo opp) you will come to the main shopping street in Dublin Grafton, and Bewleys coffee house on the right, wherewith your Dublin Pass you get a free coffee and a delicious cake, just the trick to sober up a little.
If you like shopping, this is a great place to explore, the usual shops on the main street with Brown Thomas a Dublin institution, expensive boutiques and the real Dublin shops are tucked away off the main street on the right and if you continue to walk south (away from O’Connel bridge) you will find a large beautiful Victorian mall on the right with cheap quirky shops and St Stephens Green on the left, which is a nice stop-off point on a Sunny afternoon. The tram (Called the Luas) leaves from outside here, its cheap, clean and reliable, buy your ticket next to the tram stop.
Take the Luas south to Dundrum Town Centre, its a HUGE shopping center with places to eat outside and plenty of shops for the girls, when you get off the tram just follow the crowd, they are all heading to Dundrum, if you are unsure, just ask a friendly local. Find Tescos upstairs at the back, walk outside and on the left past the book shop and outdoor walking shop is a brilliant [FREE PASS] interactive Crazy Golf Course, its open until 11, the last Toff 10 pm so no rush to get there, the kids will LOVE it. I did too after all my Irish water.
Take a look at our Guide to the Best Hotels in Dublin and a Mini Guide of Things to Do in Ireland covering the East coast.
If you only have one day in Dublin, this is an awesome do it all in one day plan. To make the most of your time you can take taxis, or if you’re with children or your loved one I would recommend a horse-drawn carriage, which can be flagged down on the street or outside the Guinness factory. You can split the guide into two or three days and enjoy everything each attraction has to offer, or if you have a layover in Dublin airport coming up, make the most of the few hours you have to see the beautiful city of Dublin.