Ireland is dream destination for many of us, whether it’s to reconnect with our family trees or just because it looks like an amazing destination. Dublin is an easy European destination for Americans to visit as well thanks to the short flight times from the East Coast and of course our shared language. The capital city, Dublin, is where many begin their Irish travels and while it’s an easy city to understand, there are certain sights that you should absolutely not miss.
Located in the heart of the city, Trinity College has been educating the Irish elite since the 16th century. A stroll through the well-manicured gardens is a peaceful way to spend an afternoon, but the real reason most tourists flock to the grounds is to see a book. The famous illuminated manuscript, The Book of Kells, is a 1200-year old copy of the four Gospels that is one of the best intact examples of this beautiful art form anywhere in the world. Every day the curators display various pages from the folio, ensuring that no two visits are ever the same.
This quirky landmark may not be on everyone’s top list of Dublin attractions, but for me it was a highlight of my time in the city. Walking through the main door to Kilmainham, it’s hard to believe that when it opened in 1796 it was dubbed a shining beacon in the world of prison reform. That acclaim was short-lived though and now the Gaol is known more for its transgressions than for its accomplishments. It was on this site that many of the leaders of the 1916 Easter Rising were executed and because of that Kilmainham is a somber site for many Irish. While it may be sad at times, a visit to this famous prison is an important way to learn more about Irish history and to better understand the resentments that still bubble oh so close to the surface.
Dublin’s top attraction, no visit to the capital city is complete without a tour of the famous Guinness Storehouse. Located at St. James's Gate, the brewery has been producing the hearty stout many of us love since 1759 - this beer is older than the United States! Today the famous beer is still produced at the St. James site, but it is also home to one of the best factory tours in the world. Guests are ushered through a museum illustrating the beer making process, as well as the history of Guinness itself. The best part? The entrance fee includes a free pint of Guinness at the beautiful observation lounge overlooking Dublin.
Please drink responsibly and use a designated driver, as your RoamRight policy does not cover loss resulting from or caused by being under the influence of alcohol.
These are just a few of the many great ways to spend your time in the Irish capital, but no matter what you decide to do you are almost guaranteed to have a great time.
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A luxury adventure traveler at heart, Matt Long shares his experiences with thousands of readers every day through his travel blog, LandLopers.com. As someone who has a bad case of the travel bug, Matt travels the world in order to share tips on where to go, what to see and how to experience the best the world has to offer. Matt is a Washington, DC based travel writer/photographer and has been featured on many other web sites and publications including BBC Travel, CNN GO, Huffington Post, AFAR Magazine and National Geographic Intelligent Travel. His work is also syndicated on the Flipboard and Pulse apps. Follow Matt on Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, Twitter and Google Plus.
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