The capital of the Republic of Ireland, Dublin is surprisingly large for a country with a total population of around two million people. Most of the city’s inhabitants live in outlying suburbs, however, and Dublin’s main travel destinations are located in the center of the city. A city with a thousand-year-old past, Dublin is both an historical city and a bustling modern-day port. The city treasures its past while never forgetting to live in the present.
Other cities in Europe may be known for art or music; Dublin is renowned for its literature. Dublin is the home to literary giants like Oscar Wilde, James Joyce and George Bernard Shaw, so it’s no surprise that one of the city’s greatest attractions is a 1200-year-old book. Housed at Trinity College, the alma mater of writers like Bram Stoker and Samuel Becket, the Book of Kells is a rare, ornamented copy of the four gospels of the New Testament.
Historical attractions include Dublin Castle, a Norman fortress built in 1204, and St. Patrick’s Cathedral, completed in 1260 and still the nation’s largest cathedral. For its collection of prehistoric gold, Celtic art and Viking artifacts, the National Museum of Ireland is worth a visit as well.
Easy-going locals are a sociable lot known for their wit, charm and passion for good food and drink. The latter may explain why the Guinness Storehouse, home of Ireland’s celebrated brew, is the most visited attraction in Ireland. Equally popular are the city’s pub crawls, of which the literary pub crawls are perennial favorites. Actors lead visitors from pub to pub past literary landmarks and regale participants with excerpts from Dublin’s most famous authors.
Whether exploring the James Joyce Museum or swapping stories with locals over a pint of Guinness, a visit to Dublin is a unique and memorable experience. Visitors come away with a stirring narrative that they’ll love to share with others for years to come.