Dates with Dublin

So, as I wrote in my last post, life is pretty good these days.

But it’s still a life in transition career-wise as both of my short-term contracts come to an end – one this week and one in a month’s time, and I face a potential return to the dole queue which worries me more than I care to admit.  Anyway, I’m hoping it won’t come to that (anyone, if you’re reading, please employ me. I can count, add, make excellent tea and I write good and stuff) but in the meantime, I have one month of part-time employment ahead which means one month of work-less afternoons. I don’t like having too much free time on my hands, so I’ve come up with a project to make use of that time.

I’ve lived in Dublin for six years now, and while it’s been reasonably good to me, it’s just somewhere I live, not somewhere I love.  I’m a west of Ireland girl, and I’m passionate about that part of the country – it’s where my heart and soul lie, but lately I’ve wondered whether I’ve been a bit unfair on Dublin. Like a nice lad you go on a date with but aren’t really too bothered about, I can’t help feeling that maybe I haven’t scratched the surface, and given Dublin enough of a chance to grow on me. I might just be missing out.

So for the month of August I’m going to explore the city, spend a bit of time with it and get to know it a little better. It’ll be on a budget, but they say money can’t buy happiness. We won’t be going to the best restaurants, nor drinking the finest wine, but perhaps a clear head will mean clearer vision. Nor will we be transported in style – it’ll be a two-wheel system mostly, but fresh air is good for the soul and the waistline.

Starting from next Tuesday, I’ll be visiting places that have either been on my own list of things to do for a while, or places I didn’t know existed, that have been recommended to me by friends or by the wonderfully helpful folk over on twitter. I’m looking for the places that help me learn about Dublin’s past, and tell me about the people who live and have lived here. I’m also quite enthusiastic about eating lovely food on a budget, so hoping to unearth a couple of thrifty treasure troves. I’m going to be a tourist in my own city. I don’t count photography as one of my skills, but I’ll take the odd photo, and may even write a line or three if somewhere really tickles my fancy.

If you have any suggestions for places I could go that you think I’ll like, please leave them in the comments below.

Dublin, I look forward to our first date.

Here’s a list of suggestions I’ve come up with and received. It’s been no means comprehensive, but it’s a great start and enough to keep me busy for a while. If you have any suggestions, please feel free to add them in! 

13 thoughts on “Dates with Dublin

  1. Hi Anne-Marie,

    What an interesting and exciting project! I’m sure hundreds of people have suggested it to you but one place I visited for the first time a couple of years ago is Kilmainham Jail. They do a great tour – very informative and very poignant.

    I do hope you will write about your adventures – I’d love to know all the places you discover around our capital city. I wonder how many of them I’ve been to – probably too few, shame on me!

    Enjoy your discovery of Dublin!


  2. Thank you John! You know, I only visited it myself recently when my mum, dad and sister were up for a weekend, and I absolutely loved it – had a lump in my throat for most of the tour too. I’ll add it to the list though as others might not have been and I’d certainly recommend it.

    Wish I had your photography skills to help me along the journey! Check out the next post for some of the suggestions I received. 🙂

  3. Pingback: Dates with Dublin – Places to See | An Cailín Rua
  4. Great idea. I was in the Chester Beatty Library for the first time about 3 years ago and found it very interesting. The Viking Splash Tour is great fun and I learned some interesting bits along the way too.


  5. No harm many folk in our capital city never see what it has to offer even when it is on their doorstep. Spent a few days staying in town and doing some of the touristy things over the years, the ghost bus is good fun, kilmainham gaol, guiness storehouse, jameson distillery, book of kells, national museum in collins barracks and a few others on the list, there’s also Dublin’s zoological gardens :-).

  6. Thanks a million Ciaran and Michael for the suggestions. Ciaran, I’ve always wanted to do the Viking Splash Tour! Must add that to the list for when I have willing victims.. I mean, visitors. And Michael I’d forgotten about the Ghost Bus! Jameson Distillery is also somewhere I haven’t been. This list is getting longgg….

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