Ireland is by far one one of my top 3 countries weve ever visted! Its a place I crave to go back to and every so often say, “wanna move to Ireland?” ( Ryan always responds with yes, lets go) Im not sure if I actually could live there bc of the cold and rain but if you know the type of weather youre getting into before hand, a visit is amazing.
Our first time in Dublin was in our September 2015 backpackingt trip. The last stop before flying home to NY. We landed early in the morning around 8am and decided the first thing we need to do was get a true Irish Coffee. (Litterally the first thing, we didnt make it past the airport bar!) Now I honestly didnt know what an Irish Coffee was. I kinda thought it was Coffee with Baileys in it so I was stoaked. Turns out its coffee with irish whiskey and cream. (my love for whiskey is not so strong) And they were out cream (oh boy this is going to be rough….black coffee and whiskey. 2 no goes in my book.) But due to the fact they didnt have cream they gave us the Irish coffees for free! So naturally my cheap ass downed it like straight shots bc I was excited about a good deal. I honestly hated it without cream and it literally burned the whole way down and lit my stomach on fire but i was still happier than a pig in shit and already in love with this country bc of the free drink. We got tipsy off the one coffee and wandered out of the airport to find a way to our hostel. Theres a $2 euro bus! Gosh this is such a good start!
We had reservations to stay at Barniciles hostel in a 4 bunk room. We were kinda dreading it because it had already been 2 weeks of backpacking and 4 other countries. We were so wore out. The first night we were exhausted. Walked around a bit, got dinner ( bangers and mash!) . Although it was a sunday night the Dublin streets seemed like mardi gra! The 4 person room was very clean, secure, and had big lockers (those are a great find for a backpacker!) But with So many people out partying till 5am (our hostel was next to temple bar so it was deff pretty loud) we had a horrible night sleep and went to the front deskin the morning and asked if they had any private rooms. Thankfully they did and we made the swicth for the other nights (life savers!)
Now im not sure what day we did what but heres a few activites we did that I loved:
Guniess Factory: Now if you have read any of my other blogs youll prob know by now that Im not a huge beer fan (but the irish ciders are my fav!) But how do you go to dublin and not go to the guniess facroty? You dont. So on we went! The tour was very cool, and very worth it. I became a certified beer pourer and then we went up to the top of building to the COOLEST sky bar. 360 degrees of glass walls that over look the entire city while enjoying 2 free beers. I only drank 1 of mine but I must say Guniess in Ireland tastes WAYYYYY different than in the states. (bc of the extra hops they have to put in it to ship it overseas.) It tastes more like chocolate in Ireland. Althought it was much better, I still passed #2 to Ryan.
Cliffs of Moher: We booked this off of Viator in advance and it was amazing! The tour bus picked us up right at the corner of our hostel and drove us the 2.5 hours to the cliffs, stopping by what I think was St. Johns castle on the way. That alone was worth the tour and we hadent even made it the cliffs yet. Upon arrival the tour guide told everyone not to get within 4 feet of the cliff due to winds that blow people off every year. And that just the week prior “some stupid girl decided it would be a good idea to do a handstand near the edge and fell to her death” IT WAS LIKE HE WAS SPEAKING TO ME! I looked at Ryan completely shocked that he had just said that but knew in my mind I didnt travel all the way to Irleand to not get my #handstandsallovertheworld picture! I can deff see how poeple die there honestly. Esp when you have dumb people like Ryan and I who dangle our legs over the ledge and climb on the big rocks, and with my false step your a goner, heading STRAIGHT down. But we survived and I even got my #handstandsalloverthewolrd photo. (PSA: I do not condone any activities we did and highly recommend listening to your tour guide and staying back away from the cliff!) After we left the cliffs we drove through Galaway and stopped in a small town for lunch. I beleieve I had another round of bangers and mash ( sausage with mashed potatoes and onion gravy) and it was delicious. Honestly I am obsessed with bangers and mash, I highly reccommed!
On our second trip to Dublin was in October of 2017, we only spent one day there. We had taken a train from Belfast into Dublin at 6am and then we flying out of Dublin then next morning at 5am. Like idiots we had decided before the trip that we wouldnt get a hotel for that night in Dublin, that we would “party all night then go to the airport at 3am for our 5am flight, why waste the money?” OR SO WE THOUGHT. Honestly it poured the whole time and we were hungover from Belfast the night before. We were miserable and freezing cold with 60lbs backpacks and no where to put them. We cheked everywhere online for a storage locker to drop our bags at and all of them closed around 6pm (so wed have to carry our bags around the city from 6pm to 3am when we went to the airport) At this point i was cranky and thinking how horrible of a choice this was. I convinced Ryan to go to Barnicles Hostel (where we had stayed 2 years ago, back in 2015.) and see if they would hold our bags even tho we didnt even have reservations to stay there. THEY DID! For $1euro each bag! Can you believe it! I love the Irish so much and will always stay at Barnicles when I go to Dublin bc they are the nicest folks ever! We stayed most of the day wandering around the mueseum hiding from the rain and needing a place to sit down. At one point we hid in the small kids corner under the stairs because there were pillows and we laid down and tried to fight off the hangovers. The muesuum was quite interesting tho. If you have any interest in religion there is a floor that gives you the histoy on almost every religion you can think of and the comparables between the others. We spent quite a bit of time in there learning and discussing our thoughts on them.
Later that night we went back to a bar we had visited on our first Dublin trip. I always love how friendly the Irish are. A few people just came up and starting talking with us and being so friendly. I wish the rest of the world treated others like the Irish do!
Around 9pm we just couldnt do it any longer. I was CRANKY, cold and tired. We hopped on a bus and headed to the airport thinking that wed just go through security and sleep at our gate until boarding around 445am. FUN FACT: They wont let you go through security until abut 2 hours before your flight. So basically we were trapped until 3am. I tried to chug a cider at the airport bar but just couldnt push through. We ended up on the cold concreate floor near the airport doors, FREEZING, with about a billion other folks waiting till they opened security at 3am, and tried to sleep. (wet clothes from the rain, a cold concreate floor, and a backpack for a pillow isnt as glamourus as you would imagine, book a hotel guys ITS WORTH THE MONEY) Im not sure who I enjoyed more, the rude American who decided to play his LOUD music at 1am using his beats by dre pill, the mother with her 4 runnning and screaming children from 12am-2 (like dont they sleep??), or the increadly drunk man who keep continued to lay right next to us and leave his bag unattended, even tho the cops spoke to him about it 3 times! (turns out homeboy didnt even have a flight to catch, he was just homeless I believe. Oh and he was a hot head and an extremely angry man so Ryan was basically laying on top of me at the point to protect me.) Overall the night before we barely slept bc we were drunk, they whole day was spent in the rain, and now this. Could it get worse? Apparently yes, yes it can.
3am comes around, we go through security and I was so excited for an hour nap before the flight. Our gate was in a part of the airport that was under construction and HAD NO HEAT, and nowhere to lay down. I have been awake, partly hungover, and shivering for almost 24 hours at this point and now theres no heat and its 30 degrees outside. I cried. Like the little bitch that I am. I just couldnt handle life anymore and wanted nothing more to get out of Ireland and into barcelona. Our flight ended up delayed in which I cried again, only wanting to sleep, put down this damn 60lbs bag (theres no freaking wheels on this thing!) and be warm. My body physically hurt so bad from shivering and I was over this nightmare. When we finally made it to barcelona we took a cab directly to our cruise port, went to our room, and napped for 3 hours. (even tho we were meeting up with my family in barcelona and taking this cruise with them. Sorry fam!
All in all Im still obsessed with Dublin and know that its no one but our fault for the crumby time we had the second time around. Youll see me again soon Dublin and I will redeem myself!!