The saying is, “When In Rome do as the Romans do”. Well the same goes for any city right? So we decided to take on that motto, “When in Dublin…”. In our minds that meant hit the pubs, listen to live music – modern and folk, have a Sunday roast, brunch with beans on toast, all while exploring the beautiful city of Dublin. And that is what we did, very well I might add. Dublin did not let us down, through rain and shine. This was our second visit and each time I become more and more fond of this city and the people.
We arrived on a rainy Friday evening rushing to our hotel, The Westin at College Green, and off to the O2 Arena to see Lady Gaga! My husband being the good sport he is, bought me tickets to the show, which he secretly enjoyed. This venue is a great place to see a show. We had standing tickets so we could experience all of the fun with the “Little Monsters”, which is how Lady Gaga refer to her fans. So Little Monster 1 (me) and Little Monster 2 (my husband :)) enjoyed the music, but this was only Part 1 of the music series that weekend.
Day 2 consisted of an early start so we could take full advantage of the beautiful sunny day. We started with a breakfast at Elephant & Castle. It might sound familiar as there is also one in New York City. Unfortunately we didn’t document our delicious breakfast but we chowed down on Huevos Rancheros, a creme brulee oatmeal with berries and an omelet. I’d highly recommend this place if you are looking for a good solid breakfast or brunch. Following our delicious meal our day continued on with exploring Dublin. We made our way through Grafton and Liffey Street, for some shopping and then off to the Dublin Castle.
On the way we found the non touristy areas and wandered through the narrow, cobblestone streets to find some great thrift and music shops, little cafes and restaurants off the beaten path. After all of this walking we of course worked up another appetite so we stopped in at “Taste of Emila”. This great little spot served up boards of salumi and cheese. HEAVEN! What more do I need than salumi and cheese paired with a glass of vino, at an authentic Italian restaurant.
That evening we had Part 2 of the Music Series at Academy 2, to see a Pearl Jam cover band, Pearl Jem. Academy 2 was a small, intimate venue, with enough seating for us to sit back and listen to this cover band who sounded just like the real life Eddie Vedder. I went back in time for a moment, to my sophomore year in high school, as I listened to Even Flow, Jeremy and Alive. Then I opened my eyes and thought, “No this time I am in Dublin”. While I have fond memories of high school this moment was much better. So we had a great time at the show with no real plans for the rest of the evening. On our walk back through the Temple Bar area, bar being the key word, we stumbled across what we both thought to be one of the best parts of our trip, the Merchant Temple Bar. We saw a sign that read “Live Music” and thought lets check it out, more music, why not. That seemed to be the theme of the weekend anyway…
It was a little crowded so we made our way to the back of the bar and found a cozy spot which lead to a great little table offered to us by two Irishmen. Now I’m not sure what the best part about this bar was because there were so many things to choose from – the friendly locals, the pints of Guinness flowing or the awesome live music – Irish folk, hairbands, Pop; or all the people dancing and singing along having a fun time.
Needless to say we woke up on day 3 a little slow and in need of a good breakfast. We made our way to The Bakehouse for some Beans on Toast. What better way to start your morning after a night filled with Guinness. A cute place alongside Ha’penny Bridge. Their motto is to serve the traditional foods that their parents and grandparents were raised on. I feasted on Beans on Toast with mushrooms and a freshly squeezed orange juice. We enjoyed it so much that we went back the next day before our flight back to Copenhagen because we didn’t have enough the first time around.
This time I had the Potato Farls with a side of baked beans and an orange juice. Delicious. Of course they have lighter and healthier options if that’s what you are looking for.
After breakfast we were in dire need of a walk so it was time to do some more shopping before we headed to our final night of the Music Series Part 3, back at the O2 Arena to see One Republic. I didn’t have high expectation for this concert but surprisingly it ended up being my favorite. Sorry Little Monsters but this band sounds better live than they do on their album.
Needless to say our trip to Dublin was a fantastic one. Filled with good food, Guinness, music and shopping but most of all a beautiful city with wonderful people. Make your way to Dublin someday friends. You won’t be disappointed. I can promise you that.