Dublin is Ireland's capital city and a vibrant metropolis where over a quarter of the country's population lives. Dublin remains an intimate European capital city, rich in its cultural heritage and offers visitors much in terms of local charm from touring historical castles to cozy conversations over pints in traditional pubs. Located along the banks of the river Liffey on Ireland's east coast at Dublin Bay, Dublin is divided into two distinct areas, the south side of the river and the north side of the river. To the north is the main boulevard called O'Connell Street where the majority of shopping streets are located. Along the south side of the city is where you'll find such sights as Trinity College, St. Patrick's Cathedral, Grafton Street and the popular Temple Bar area. With all of its charms and quirks, Dublin is a proud city and a favorite for many travelers.
The Guinness Storehouse
Ireland's top attraction is the Guinness Storehouse. People from all corners of the world come to visit the birthplace of the black frothy brew and get a taste straight from the barrel. In November 2000, the Guinness Storehouse opened its doors as a multi-media visitor experience. Thousands of visitors each year enter the pint glass-shaped tower and make their way up through seven stories of interactive exhibits demonstrating the brewing process as well as the history behind this legendary stout. A treat for the senses, the self-guided tour allows guests to look at old ads, touch the barley, smell the hops, hear the waterfall and finally, to taste the finished product. On the top floor, visitors line up to claim their complimentary pint of Guinness, complete with shamrock flourish, to enjoy in the Gravity Bar. The completely glass-enclosed level provides 360 degree views over the brewery and city.
The Jameson Distillery
The Old Jameson Distillery, tucked away in a quaint cobbled alley that opens into a small courtyard, has managed to maintain the charm of its heyday in the early 1800s. Though most of the operation has since moved to Cork, Ireland, the old distillery is one of Dublin's top attractions and a must-see for whiskey fans as well as those curious about this Irish landmark. Tours run daily and cover the history of John Jameson and the family business he created in addition to the whiskey making process. After learning about malting, milling, mashing, fermenting, distilling and maturing, visitors are invited to take part in the final step--tasting!
Dublin Castle has served many functions since it was built by King John of England in 1230. At that time, the castle was meant to act as a defense center against the current invaders, the Normans, and serve as the seat of the English government. Since then, Dublin Castle has also been the site of the royal mint, the police headquarters and the residence of various British leaders. Today, the castle grounds are used for some governmental purposes but are mostly only used for ceremonial purposes, such as the Irish President's inauguration, and to host conferences, like those of the European Council.
Trinity College and the Book of Kells
Supremely located in the heart of Dublin, Trinity College stands as the gem of Ireland. Ranked as the number one university in the nation and in the top forty globally, Trinity College has a stellar academic reputation in addition to being one of Dublin's finest landmarks. Established in 1592, the college has been at its current location since the 1700s and boasts some beautiful Georgian architecture from that time. The Campanile and Examination Hall are commonly the subjects of photographs. The Old Library is popular amongst visitors as well, but it is not the look of the building's exterior that draws them there. Held within the Old Library is the world famous Book of Kells, an ancient sacred text, which is on display in a special exhibit.
St Patrick's Cathedral
The largest church in Ireland, the majestic St. Patrick’s Cathedral has borne witness to nearly 800 years of Irish history. The church was supposedly founded on the site where Ireland’s patron saint, St. Patrick, baptized converts and is known for its exquisite stained-glass windows, marble statues, and medieval tiling. St. Patrick’s is as much a significant spot for literary pilgrims as it is for their religious counterparts; Jonathan Swift, the esteemed author of “Gulliver’s Travels” once served as dean here and is now buried within its gray stone walls. Make the most of Dublin and make sure you prebook all your tours with Jetset Destinations.