We’re back! My daughter and I arrived home to California last Friday after our 2 week first-time visit to Ireland. I’ve decided to do my trip report by city/town rather than days – I’m sure no one wants 12+ days of trip report!
We arrived in Dublin on a cool, drizzly morning – which was such a wonderful change from the hot, dry California summer. We stayed 4 nights at the ABC Guesthouse on Drumcondra Road, about a 10 minute bus ride from city center. Our accommodations were just right for us, and we had our first Irish breakfast there – so much protein! Eggs, sausage, bacon, beans!
Our very favorite spot in Dublin was the Chester Beatty Library behind Dublin Castle. This is a hidden jewel, we had the place practically to ourselves – and it’s free! The exhibit on the history of book binding was fascinating, and the exhibit of ancient religious texts was impressive.
Being on a budget, most of our meals came from the basement grocery shop in Marks and Spencer on Grafton Street. Sandwiches, salads, bottles of water or juice were really all we needed.
We toured Trinity College and saw the Book of Kells, the long room library is breathtaking. We also took the historical walking tour of Dublin. Our guide, a graduate student in medieval history, was excellent. On our own we visited Christ Church, St. Patrick’s cathedral, and the National Gallery. We also went to Number Twenty-Nine and took the very informative tour of this Georgian home.
Our day trip out of Dublin was the Wild Wicklow tour. We had a lovely day weather-wise for the tour and it was great to be off our feet and out to the country. The scenery was spectacular and we had a yummy vegetable soup and brown bread lunch at Anns Coffee Shop in Laragh. Glendalough was incredible – fascinating history in such a beautiful setting.
We did our entire trip by public transportation – which was terrific! Every bus was on time, and it gave us the chance to see small towns and chat with locals. Next stop: Kilkenny.