2/4/18- Dublin, Ireland
This weekend we decided to visit Dublin. Out of everywhere in Europe, it may have been a place that doesn’t make sense coming from Rome, yet it was something on our list of places to see. So, Friday morning we made our way to Ireland, not really knowing what to expect. We spent a good part of Friday just milling around the city, being utterly confused by which way traffic was coming, and of course eating some fantastic meals. For the majority of Friday, we hung around in Temple Bar, which is the area with a lot of pubs and restaurants in the heart of the city. It reminded me of an Irish version Beale Street in Memphis. Not as wild as Bourbon Street, but still a very happy atmosphere with a blend of tourists and locals alike eating good food and listening to some fantastic music.
One of the biggest highlights for me was the amount of live music we were able to enjoy. There was something very refreshing about seeing musicians perform. It just seems to lift the spirits of everyone in the room. Though the popular music was very nice, I definitely enjoyed the more traditional Irish music we heard as it complimented such picturesque settings in the various Dublin pubs.
On Saturday we did most of the touristy attractions throughout Dublin. We started the morning off by visiting the Book of Kells and the Long room at Trinity College. I think it was safe to say that everyone including myself was amazed at the fantastic condition these Celtic gospels were in, considering that they were written in the 9th Century.
After viewing the books, we made our way up to the long room. For the Harry Potter fan in me, this was a cool spot to see, but the general grandeur of the room and the archways of this library made the space incredibly impressive.
We did a considerable amount of walking again, popping into Christ Church Cathedral and a restaurant to grab some lunch as well as a nice American cup of coffee. Don’t get me wrong, the cappuccino and cornetto for 2 Euro is hard to match, but a nice mug of coffee on a cold day really hit the spot.
It wouldn’t have been a trip to Ireland if we didn’t make our way to the Guinness Storehouse. Besides the obvious, the tour was actually well worth the price of admission. Going through the processes of production, the rich history of Arthur Guinness’ company and the amazing vintage advertisements (especially the toucans) made for a really cool experience, that ended with us being 7 floors up on top of the Storehouse with panoramic views of Dublin and the surrounding countryside.
Besides it being kind of chilly and overcast, our time in Dublin was fantastic. As our first “foreign- foreign” trip outside of Italy has set the bar high for the remainder of the semester. Until next time.