Sunshine in Dublin

I stepped out of the taxi into Dublin’s beautiful streets and I knew I was in love with this city. For a while I have wanted to go to Ireland, and I was finally here, I couldn’t believe it. The opportunity arises as part of the Tech&Media Club at the ESADE MBA so the combination of visiting tech companies and a city that I had on my travel list was simply perfect.

We arrived around lunchtime and were all starving (our group was of around 11 people, some joined after). We went straight for lunch and beers at a restaurant called Sixty6.  Try the local fish dishes, they were really good!

Later we spent the afternoon walking around the city and enjoying the sunset.

Sunset over the Liffey River

Sunset over the Liffey River

After our walk we enjoyed a couple of Guinness (if you don’t like dark beer like me, don’t worry, Guinness has an excellent blonde beer) in the area of Temple Bar. This area is very well-known because there are lots of pubs around there but to make things fun and confusing, there also is a bar called Temple Bar.  The Temple Bar is very touristy and usually extremely packed, like that night, so we went to another bar nearby called Norseman Pub Dublin. It also had a lot of people but we were able to find a table and it had amazing live music! Dublin is such a musical and artistic city, after the bar we stayed on the street listening to the artists that were playing their music, it was simply inspiring. Within our group, we had 2 Irish locals and they told us that sometimes during Christmas Bono plays music on the street as well.

The next day we got to work. We visited Facebook and Google’s offices. We were all was so excited to be there.

The team at Google!

The group at Google!

After visiting the companies, Anna, one of our locals, showed us her ideal pub crawl. We went to a typical Irish Pub called Grogans Pub. We really felt like locals there, drinking Guinness or Jameson whisky. After that we went to Odessa Bar & Restaurant, it’s a restaurant as well (on different floors) and it’s a really nice bar to go for a drink and good conversation. It has a more chill ambience to it.

The fastest and to me funnest way to get to know more about Dublin is taking a free walking tour. Our tour guide was very funny and had a lot of interesting fun facts about Dublin, it’s only 2 hours, so after that you can re-visit anything that you were very interested in, it helps you  prioritize. Check out the captions in the pictures to learn fun facts from the tour.

In the afternoon I took a walk with two friends to Stephen’s Green, it’s Dublin’s biggest park and it is beautiful, especially if the weather is nice and it’s autumn like it was that weekend.

Then, it was Halloween night! In case you didn’t know, Halloween was created in Ireland. The ancient Celtic festival, Samhain was on November 1st and celebrated the end of Harvesting. The culture believed that on October 31st the boundaries between the living and the dead overlapped and the dead returned as ghosts. They people would leave food and wine on their doorsteps to keep the roaming spirits out of the house and wore masks when they were out on the street to pass as ghosts. Here’s a fun, short video on the history of Halloween and its evolution in time.

So as you can imagine, Dublin is a great destination for Halloween. Everyone is dressed up, out on the streets and partying. To finish the amazing short trip, I went for brunch at Metro Cafe on Sunday. The food was incredible and it was a very cute restaurant.

Metro Cafe in Dublin

Metro Cafe in Dublin

The best thing about our weekend in dublin was that, it was SUNNY!!! The weather in Ireland in general is pretty much unpredictable and it is a very rainy country. Dublin has a slightly better weather than the rest of the country but it still has an average of about 15 rainy days per month, so half of the time it rains. We were extremely lucky that it only rained one of the days we were there, and it was the day we were are the offices, so it wasn’t a big deal.

Sushine in Dublin

Sushine in Dublin

I have to say that I highly recommend Dublin as a destination, there is still a lot I want to see in Ireland, like for example the cliffs. This was a great start, I will be back soon (I hope!).

Travel Tips

Flights:

  • Aerlingus
  • Ryanair

Both are low cost local airlines that have great fares. I flew in Aerlingus and the services were pretty good.

Hotel

  • Ashfield Hostel: to be honest, I stayed in a Hostel because I couldn’t find anything else because I booked to close to the date and everything was full (it was Halloween weekend). But there probably are cute little hotels that aren’t too expensive. The great thing about this hostel was that it had an amazing location and it was very clean.

Restaurants / Pubs

  • Brasserie Sixty6
  • Norseman
  • Grogan’s
  • Odessa
  • Typical Irish food: O’Neills
  • Brunch at Metro Cafe
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