Wednesday, July 15, 2009

European Adventure, Part 3: Dublin, Ireland

The next two days of the trip were spent in Dublin. It's about a 4-hour bus ride from Cork to Dublin, so we got up super early to catch the earliest bus and maximize our time in Dublin. Once we arrived, we found our hotel and got checked in. It wasn't the nicest. I'm not totally sure it was all that clean, but I pretended like the carpets and bedding probably had been cleaned sometime recently. For a cheap price in a big city, it sufficed. The worst part was there was no window or a/c, so it stayed pretty warm in the room.

After we got checked in, we stopped by the Porterhouse Brewing Company that Amy had recommended to me. It was right across from our hotel, and it turned out to be the best restaurant we ate in during the whole trip. I had this amazing goat's cheese cooked in pizza dough on a salad and was one happy camper.

We ended up doing one of those hop on and off bus tours and rode it the whole cycle so that we could see where we actually wanted to go visit the next day. We did stop once at the Dublin Castle and found ourselves unimpressed. Castles in Ireland are just not what I expect when I think of a castle. This one in particular was odd. Different parts of it had been built in different time periods, so none of the building matched other parts of the building. It was weird.

There was some sort of sporting event going on that night (we never did figure out what exactly), and apparently when that happens the pubs quit serving food. We had a REALLY hard time finding dinner that night and finally settled on getting some pizza. We rounded out the night with a Ghost Bus tour. It was kind of pricey, but it ended up being super fun. We drove around Dublin in a dark bus and heard all sorts of scray ghost stories from the past. I dig that kind of stuff. We even stopped twice in cemeteries and such to hear some specific stories about the people buried there, etc. It was neat.

On Monday, we found that most museums in the area are closed on Mondays. B had wanted to check a few of them out, but this ruled out that option. We took some photos at some of the pretty cathedrals and then spent most of the day touring the Guinness brewery. This was definitely the best thing we did in Dublin. As you walk through and move up each floor, you learn all sorts of cool stuff about how Guinness is made, the histroy of Guinness, their advertising campaigns, etc. I don't drink much Guinness, but it was still a really cool tour.

At the top, you get a pint of Guinness and enjoy amazing views of the city from way up high. Dublin doesn't have the best skyline in the world or anything, but I always enjoy seeing cities from a higher vantage point.

We ended up having dinner at the Porterhouse again because we enjoyed it so much. I opted for bangers and mash this time around, and I enjoyed a sampler where I got to try 3 different beers that they brew. It was a nice way to finish up our time in both Dublin and Ireland altogether.

Yummy goat's cheese cooked in pizza dough

I went into the bathroom at Porterhouse and cracked up when I saw this. For 2 euros, you can straigthen your hair right there in the public bathroom of the restaurant. I didn't take advantage of the opportunity.

Part of Dublin Castle

This view of Dublin Castle shows three different sections built in three different time periods

In the Temple Bar area

Cool building and flowers

St. Patrick's Cathedral

It's Guinness time!

They put these little designs in our foam

Part of the brewery

All gone!


The Northerner said...

I've been following along on your Europe posts but haven't commented yet. Looks like you had a great time! Love your pics :)

Stephanie said...

Love your pouty face! And I laughed out loud at the public hair straightener.