Temple Bar Dublin

Is Dublin, Ireland the perfect city for a first time visit to Europe?

For sure, it checks all the right boxes! Dublin is the perfect size, perfect distance, full of friendly people, and has something for everyone. 

Location, Location, Location

Dublin, like London, is just across the pond. It’s actually just a tad bit farther than heading to California from the east coast. From Boston, the published travel time is six hours and as we all know, only too well, there’s some extra time padded in there! It’s so geographically desirable that Delta doesn’t even fly wide body planes there. Yes, surprisingly so, I flew in a 757 both ways. Dublin could definitely be considered an ideal destination for a long weekend. What’s even better is that upon arrival, a taxi can whisk you to your hotel’s doorstep in approximately 30 minutes.

Cooley’s

The Irish Speak English

Traveling to a foreign country for the first time can be a daunting experience. Throwing in a language barrier can just add to the anxiety. Who needs stress on a vacation, right? The good news here is the Irish speak English. The bad news here is their accents can be so heavy that sometimes they are difficult to understand. However, all signs, menus, etc are in English which makes life abroad a lot easier.

Grafton Street, Dublin

Shopping on Grafton Street in Dublin

Dublin is Just the Right Size

Dublin is a walkable city. I visited for four days and the only time I stepped into a cab was to get to and from the airport. After drinking Guinness and eating fish and chips for days, walking was a great way to shed the added pounds. Just think about how much extra money you have to pay for all that Guinness! Getting around Dublin is actually quite simple, program your Google Maps to your desired location and you are set to go.

Walking along Grafton Street

The Irish Folk are Friendly

Where I come from, people aren’t always the friendliest. Admittedly, I can be guilty of that myself.  It’s quite the opposite in Dublin. As a matter of fact, Dublin was voted the friendliest European city twice by TripAdvisor readers. The people in Ireland are so friendly and welcoming, they actually bend over backwards to help you. It’s actually true that if you ask an Irishman for directions they will most likely walk you to your desired location.

The Euro is on Your Side

I have been to Europe when the Euro to dollar conversion rate was 1.65. While I’ve seen it lower, it’s currently hovering at about 1.15 which still makes things pretty affordable. Just be sure to use a credit card that does not charge a foreign transaction fee and always use ATM machines for the best rates.

River Liffey, Dublin

The Long Room at Trinity Library

Dublin is the Perfect Mix

No matter what your interest or age is Dublin has it all. From the amazing Long Room at Trinity Library to the vibrant Temple Bar area there’s something for everyone. You could shop til you drop on Grafton Street, relax at St. Stephen’s Green, or stroll along the River Liffey. Take a walking tour of the city and don’t forget to book a visit to Guinness and the Kilmainham Goal Museum.

The Icing on the Cake

I’ve saved the best for last! Unbeknownst to me, you actually clear US Customs before you board the plane home. I had never heard of this but Dublin Airport, along with a few others, has a US Preclearance facility. How awesome is it to be able to walk off the plane in the US and head directly to baggage, grab your bags and out the door you go! 

Keep in mind that the Preclearance does take some time, so be sure to arrive at the airport at least three hours in advance. 

Last but not least… drop a few pounds before you head to Dublin because you won’t stop eating the brown bread and Kerry Gold Butter!!!

2 Responses to Is Dublin, Ireland the perfect city for a first time visit to Europe?

  1. Lila Chenoff July 31, 2017 at 1:04 pm #

    Tracy—–I love your amazing blog. Your description of every thing is awesome, it really makes you want to go to all these places and see all there is to see.

    • Tracy July 31, 2017 at 1:41 pm #

      Thanks, it’s such and easy place to get to, you should go!

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