It’s been a crazy year. In any another year, we would have been busy shopping in a Christmas Market in London, celebrated New Year’s in Amsterdam or just headed off to Portugal for some sun, but it is not to be! The highest tier of lockdown kicks in post Christmas, which means we have to stay in Dublin. There is still a lot to do in Dublin even over the Lockdown period (and in normal times). Here is our take on it.
1. Daytrip at Malahide
Malahide is a lovely village in North Dublin. It’s easily accessed by DART (train) and you can spend an entire day here. While the biggest attraction is Malahide Castle, it is likely to be closed, but there is a still lot to do in the town centre. Gibney’s (a really cozy bar) is a favorite amongst the locals, so you may need to book a table before you go. The hike from Malahide to Portmarnock via Paddy’s Hill (about 6 KMs) is really lovely and offers some amazing views of the sea.
2. Enjoy the sunset at Bull Island
Bull Island is a sandy beach in the North of Dublin. The Island is popular for walking and for bird watching. The beach can get flooded very easily if it’s high tide, so one needs to be careful. To reach Bull Island, you can take a DART to Raheny and walk about 1 KM from there. Once you reach the beach, you can simply walk around and enjoy the views. If you are into photography, you will love the place, especially with all the birds around.
3. Choose one of the many trails to hike in Howth
Howth is a lovely fishing village and is on the DART line (last station). It has a lovely town centre with many restaurants. Head over to Beshoff Bros for some of the best Fish & Chips you will ever have. The Abbey Tavern has a lovely ambience and the food (Irish, European) is amazing. You can stroll around the pier as well, along with an ice-cream from one of the many parlors.
Howth Head offers arguably the best walking trails in Dublin. There are five trails on offer depending on the time you have and fitness levels. You can find them here. The Howth Head is a cliff-walk so you get to see mesmerizing views of the sea on one side and the hills on the other. The scenery is just fantastic. We would recommend carrying a water bottle and a snack (and a sack to carry rubbish) as it can get a bit tiring if you are doing the longer routes.
4. Hike from Bray to Greystones
If one scenic cliffwalk isn’t enough to satisfy your taste for some wanderlust, how about another. Bray is in the south of Dublin and can be accessed by DART (opposite side to Howth) , which is really convenient. The hike from Bray to Greystones is very much like Howth and offers similarly breathtaking views. The hike ends in Greystones which is a lovely town with some of the most amazing restaurants. The Happy Pear is one of our favorites. It’s vegan food like you have never known before and is really delicious.
5. Enjoy a day out in Dun Laoghaire
Dun Laoghaire is all about the sea. It is a lovely town, just south of Dublin and has some of the best cafes & restaurants in town. Teddy’s Ice-cream is a famous ice-cream parlor, know for their 99s (creamy vanilla with a chocolate flake), but we prefer Scrum Diddly’s (lesser hype, better flavors (controversial opinion). Dun Laoghaire has plenty of restaurants but the Fish Shack is a must visit, if you like your fish and chips. All of these should have a take out options which is quite handy during these times. You can also just walk along the pier (there are two – The East Pier is more walkable).
Seapoint Beach & Sandycove Beach are on either side of Dun Laoghaire, which can get crowded so it’s best avoided during these times.
6. Explore the medieval town of Dalkey
Dalkey is a beautiful medieval town, south of Dublin. It is quite a posh area, full of beautiful streets, cafes & restaurants.
There is a lovely hike which starts at Dalkey and takes you to Killiney and offers some of the best views of the city that we would recommend doing.
Dalkey is also very easily accessible by the DART. Get to the other side by hiking to Killiney and you can take the DART back (simple as that)
7. Bike around the city
If it’s a sunny day (you never know), why not just bike around the city. Dublin Bikes and Bleeper Bikes are the easiest way to hire a bike in Dublin. Some great biking trails we love are :
- Phoenix Park – 9 KMs
- Sandymount to Dun Laoghaire -11 KMs
- Portobello to City Centre – 4.5 KMs
- Grand Canal to Landsdowne Road (along the Dodder river) – 7 KMs
- Mountain-biking in Ticknock – Varies. More Info here
So what are you waiting for? Make the most of what Dublin city can offer 🙂