Dublin, Ireland: Favorites of Fiona Hilliard

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I’ve had dreams of the Emerald Isle for as long as I can remember. I’d made it to Scotland and England, but somehow Ireland eluded me. Last March an email with last-minute holidays was delivered to my inbox and I simply couldn’t resist the deal on Dublin. With a few clicks, my flight to Ireland was booked.

Ireland

Too bad I didn’t know Dubliner, Fiona Hilliard, when I was planning my trip. I love enlisting the help of locals when traveling because I’m able to get tips and tricks that only a resident would know. Fiona is a travel writer and blogger from Dublin, Ireland where she runs TravelEdits.com – a travel site featuring travel news, reviews, and advice. The site also includes a section called The Dublin Edit where she blogs about her home city. Fiona’s Dublin articles regularly feature in The Guardian’s Been There, where she is the resident Dublin local.

I’d say that Fiona knows what she’s talking about when it comes to Dublin and I’m thrilled that she’s willing to pass along her favorites here.

Take it away, Fiona!

Guinness

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Postcards of Dublin will always depict Guinness, Georgian architecture, and The Ha’penny Bridge. All of these are fine, photogenic aspects of the city, but the best thing about Dublin by far is the people – the craic, the warmth and the sense of humour. Irish literature and music often evoke this spirit, but to truly experience Dublin you just have to go. So go!

The first place I take a visitor from out of town is The Guinness Storehouse.

To escape the hustle and bustle of the city I head to Wicklow – the scenery in Glendalough is spectacular.

Glendalough HDR

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If I want to shop for Irish design I go to Designist.

If you come to my city, get your picture taken at the Molly Malone statue.

Molly Malone

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For a huge splurge I go to Brown Thomas.

Photo ops in my city include The Ha’penny Bridge, St Stephen’s Green Park, The Georgian architecture, the coastline in Howth or Dalkey.

Ha'penny Bridge at Night - 2

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If my city were a celebrity it’d be Colin Farrell.

The most random thing about my city is the weather.

My city’s best museum is Kilmainham Gaol.

Kilmainham Gaol (Dublin, Ireland)

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My favorite jogging/walking route is the Phoenix Park.

For a night of dancing, go to the clubs on Harcourt Street. Or, for live music, go to Temple Bar for traditional Irish music sessions or the bars and venues on Camden Street/Wexford Street for rock/alternative live bands.

Temple Bar District, Dublin

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Zaytoon is the spot for late-night eats.

To find out what’s going on at night and on the weekends, read the Le Cool Dublin guide.

Don’t miss the Creative Quarter, an area encompassing Georges Street, South William Street and Dame Street.

Dublin City

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The best way to see my city is on foot.

When I think about my city, the song that comes to mind is U2’s ‘Where the Streets Have No Name’.

A big thank you goes to Fiona for sharing the favorites from her hometown of Dublin. Discover more from from Fiona on Facebook and Twitter.

Have you been to Dublin? What are your favorite places?

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32 Comments
  • @mrsoaroundworld
    February 7, 2013

    I love this!! And I love Dublin 🙂 Brown Thomas is one of my spiritual places – best shop in the world. I must say.. what about the Jameson Distillery??? Needs to be on this list – I may have even taken the lovely Fiona there!!

    • Leah Walker
      February 10, 2013

      Yes, Brown Thomas is an amazing store. They have such fabulous windows.

  • Fiona
    February 7, 2013

    Yes -The Jameson distillery is THE unsung hero of Dublin! The reason I mentioned the Guinness Storehouse is because every non-Irish person I meet mentions Guinness within the first three seconds of finding out I’m Irish 🙂 Oh and Ana you would love BT’s new S/S window display. Shoe heaven.

  • Robin
    February 7, 2013

    Thanks to both of you for sharing! I’m headed to Dublin in June with my daughter and four nieces so any and all tips are very much appreciated. Quick question, though – what’s the age limit on pubs in Ireland? I’ll have the following ages with me – a 14-year-old, a 16-year-old, a 17-year old and an 18-year-old as well as one who’s 23 (no, I’m not insane). Who can go in and who can’t?

    – Robin

    • Leah Walker
      February 10, 2013

      Robin, you are one brave lady. There’s no way I’d have the patience to do such a trip. Thanks for answering, Fiona.

  • Fiona
    February 7, 2013

    Hi Robin, thanks for your question. Great to hear that you’re paying Dublin a visit. The legal drinking age in Ireland is 18. Under 18s are usually only allowed on premises before 20:00 and even then they must be accompanied by an adult. For the older girls, most clubs have an over 21 door policy and ID is usually required…but as it anywhere, it depends on the club! If you’re looking to experience the pub culture with traditional music try one of the special daytime trad sessions
    on Sunday afternoons in O’Donoghues on Merrion Row or Oliver St John Gogarty in Temple bar….

  • Andrea
    February 8, 2013

    Love the post! was just in Dublin last week and loved it even more than when I was there last! My husband was a first timer and we loved that Temple Bar was having TradFest with all live music every night. We also cast all calorie counting out the window with all the luscious pub food and of course, Burdocks Fish & Chips (or “the chipper”). The people were so lovely and one sent us to O’Donoghues Pub where The Dubliners got their start, and we adored dinner at The Port House.
    Here’s my post: http://newportstylephile.com/2013/02/05/emerald-isle-style/

    • Leah Walker
      February 10, 2013

      I missed out on Burdocks. I guess that alone calls for a return trip.

  • Fiona
    February 10, 2013

    So great to hear that you were in Dublin for TradFest Andrea! Well done too for finding Burdocks – a true Dublin institution for fish and chips!! 🙂

  • Raul (@ilivetotravel in Twitter)
    February 10, 2013

    I will most definitely have to come back to this post when I finally make it to Ireland!

    • Leah Walker
      February 10, 2013

      The post and Dublin will be waiting when you decide to cross the pond.

  • Fiona
    February 10, 2013

    Dublin would love to see you Raul!

  • Tawny of Captain and Clark
    February 10, 2013

    I love this! It’s great to get to know a destination from a local’s perspective. We need to get ourselves to Dublin asap! Keep these coming!

    • Leah Walker
      February 10, 2013

      Yep, Fiona is my go-to girl for all things Dublin. I can’t wait to go back to put her advice to use.

  • The World Wanderer
    February 10, 2013

    Aww, this post made me so happy. Much of my family lives in Ireland, so a lot of this is familiar to me. Definitely need to pay them, and the city, a visit soon!

    • Leah Walker
      February 12, 2013

      I think a group field trip is in order, Erin.

  • Fiona
    February 12, 2013

    A great excuse to visit Erin!

  • Pola (@jettingaround)
    February 12, 2013

    When I make it to Dublin, Fiona will definitely be my go-to person for advice! I’d love to explore the city’s late night dining scene for sure.

    • Leah Walker
      February 14, 2013

      You and me both, Pola.

  • the lazy travelers
    February 12, 2013

    aww, love this! we were lucky to meet fiona when we were in dublin, and we can had the best time.

    • Leah Walker
      February 14, 2013

      Lucky ladies. I’d imagine there was a Guinness or two drunk between the three of y’all.

    • Fiona
      February 18, 2013

      We did have a great time! You know you’re welcome back any time! 🙂

  • lola
    February 13, 2013

    i quite enjoyed the Guinness Storehouse myself. Dublin is a cool city & the Merrion Hotel there is to. die. for.

    • Leah Walker
      February 14, 2013

      Merrion Hotel, huh? I’ll have to remember that. I stayed at the Westbury and quite enjoyed it.

    • Fiona
      February 18, 2013

      The Merrion Hotel is amazing Lola – you should check out their version of Afternoon Tea – modern art on a plate…

  • sivas
    February 16, 2013

    it looks like really great. i would go to here 🙂 i hope i could go

    • Leah Walker
      February 17, 2013

      Dublin and Ireland are both lovely. I hope you do get there.

    • Fiona
      February 18, 2013

      You should make that trip to Dublin for sure 🙂

  • Brian
    February 19, 2013

    Hi Fiona, I’ve had lots of good memories of Dublin, nothing really beats a quiet pint in Nearys,
    Cheers.

  • Andrew Jason
    March 1, 2013

    Very simple and very effective! What a special place it must be. I give it a big thumbs up, now I just need to make it to all these places with my beloved :). All journeys have secret destinations of which the traveler is unaware. I definitely visit to Dublin. God Bless you!

    • Leah Walker
      March 5, 2013

      I love that quote, “All journeys have secret destinations of which the traveler is unaware.” Brilliant and so true!

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