I love my holidays. Unfortunately, there are only so many you can take whilst working a full-time job (25 days to be exact) so you have to make the most of every moment. For that reason, we drove 5 hours and took a 2 hour ferry – in one day – to get into Dublin at 2 pm from London. We left around 5am and booked it through the sleepy streets of London before even the sun was awake. I’ve built a weekend guide to Dublin, Ireland so you can do the same!
Holiday well spent, if you ask me 😉
However, our true destiny was due north so we only had 12-ish hours to enjoy Dublin and all of its grandeur. Not ideal, but still plenty of time to enjoy ourselves. For those of you who live fast and loose like me,I’ve put together a walking guide and list of recommendations for your weekend stay in Dublin. A weekend in Dublin never felt so good.
However, I do recommend that you spend at least 2 – 3 full days in Dublin if you can manage! Its friendly nature, incredible bar culture, and downright impressive history is well worth the journey.
With a city so rich with history, I was so thrilled to be staying with Castle Hotel during my time in Dublin. I’ve marked their location in pink in my weekend guide to Dublin. This hotel’s door nobs and fixtures are older than my country – no joke – so it really put it into perspective just how much history this hotel has seen throughout the years. Once a family home, the Castle Hotel owners bought up the rest of the block in order to continue to expand their services and offerings. The same owners also manage ‘The Old Music Shop and this lovely cafe was once an actual music shop for Dublin’s coolest musicians (way way back in the day). The halls of both the cafe and the hotel are decorated with the actual sheet music found in the basement of the shop and has now been preserved and framed for all to enjoy. If that’s not class – I don’t know what is. Check-out their direct website – here.
Close enough to the action, but far enough to avoid being caught up in the drunk 4am drama, the Castle Hotel provided immaculate service and was basically a well-preserved time capsule into Dublin’s 1900 and 1800s history. The manager – Johnathan – was incredible knowledgable about all of the historical fixtures and was brimming with stories of love, deceit and passion of former owners and regulars of the Castle Hotel.
In the basement, there’s a sexy hidden bar and restaurant called ‘The Castle Vaults’ where we snuck a cheeky whiskey tasting… at 2pm. After a long drive and ferry north, there was little food in our bellies and I nearly tipped over trying to continue our tour through the amazing hotel and bar. It’s absolutely a must-do during and I’ve marked in it my weekend guide to Dublin (Google Maps layer).
The day we went to Dublin was the same day of my birth. To celebrate this momentous occasion, we went to Chapter One after Johnathan (the manager of The Castle Hotel) managed to negotiate us a last-minute reservation – THANKS JOHN! We went with the Four Course Dinner, menu below:
Tomato, salted cherry, basil
Japanese tapioca, St. Tola, Ballyhoura mushroom, leek
Cured organic salmon, Lambay crab, pea, horseradish, smoked buttermilk pancake
Stuffed quail, violet asparagus, barley, spelt, grelot onion
Salt marsh duck, tart of red Joya apple, smoked bacon, fennel pollen, pickled walnut
Saddle of spring lamb, lamb and potato galette, violet artichoke, caper flower
Have fun with Google Maps and comment on what you end up doing below!