Whoever invented reading week must have been a student with a serious case of wanderlust. Or a student with a serious passion for sleeping which let’s be honest, is a bit more likely. I didn’t spend much time sleeping during reading week. Instead I worked on an assignment (statistics, yay!) and flew off to Dublin on Friday which was slightly more fun than reporting t-tests. I met my mother at the airport and our first stop was the b&b we were staying at for two nights. Instead of staying in the city centre we decided to stay in the south of Dublin, right by the seaside and I’m happy we made that decision – although I love the hustle and bustle of the city it was nice to get a break and enjoy quiet walks disturbed by nothing but the crashing of the waves. Walking along the promenade, my mother and me came across a small Italian restaurant and decided to stop for lunch. I am sorry for the lack of pictures (my phone battery was on 25% and I knew we would be lost without google maps) but the wine and food was absolutely amazing and after eating the waiter told us the restaurant had been named the best Italian restaurant of Ireland – I totally understood why. After lunch my mother and me finally made our way into the centre of Dublin. Since it was our first day there we just wandered around taking in the city life (although compared to London Dublin feels like a rather small city). We walked along the river Liffey, over the famous bridges and I ended up buying a scarf in the ‘colours of Ireland’ because it was really cold that evening and I had forgotten to bring my scarf. We also went to the famous Temple Bar which was very crowded but the music was amazing. If you’d ask me what I liked most about Dublin I’d answer that it’s all the little cafés and pubs and just the overall atmosphere there – everything seemed pretty relaxed and I just love walking through the streets and hearing the sound of folk music at every corner. Speaking of pubs and folk music – my mother and me went to two pubs that evening to listen to live music (and to share the biggest plate of nachos ever) and it was incredible. Something that really surprised me was that Primark is called Pennys in Ireland – which I guess has to be its original name since it was founded in Dublin. If someone knows the story behind this, please fill me in, I’m curious!
The next day we decided to head to Trinity College first to have a look at their famous library and the books of Kells, a manuscript gospel book that was written about 1200 years ago – how amazing is that? We ended up spending a very long time in the library because it was insanely beautiful – can I please have a library like that in my house when I’m older? (a slightly smaller version of course.) When we went back outside the sun had come out which made the day even better – all in all we were extremely lucky with the weather we had – the forecast had predicted nothing but rain but we hardly had any and loads of sunshine instead. And we definitely made use of that. After seeing the library we wandered around, saw the castle (which did not look like a castle at first sight), walked past some cute cafés and I ended up getting a hot chocolate made with pistachio milk and it was honestly the best thing ever. Last but not least we headed down to what is probably the most famous attraction in Dublin, the Guinness Storehouse. Although I am not a fan of Guinness beer (which was again confirmed after I had used the voucher for a free pint) seeing how it was produced was really interesting and the museum wasn’t structured like a regular museum, it was really interactive and a lot of fun, whether you’re a fan of beer or not. I also loved learning more about their advertising and the fish on the bike was definitely my highlight. My favourite thing though was the view from the restaurant which was located on the fifth floor – you could see all over the city. Speaking of restaurants – after we left the Guinness Storehouse a few hours later (you could literally spend a day in there) we were on the hunt for an Italian restaurant and it turned out to be quite a mission – a lot of restaurants were booked out and we wanted to find a really cosy place. Having walked around for a while we came across a really nice looking place and I don’t know whether it was the tiredness or the fact that most of the menu was in Italian but for some reason I was convinced that they sold pasta and when we sat down and looked at the menu again I noticed that they actually didn’t (ups). Long story short: they didn’t have vegan options on the menu but ended up making vegan pasta for me when I told them I had misread the menu and struggled to find something. This definitely made my day (if not my year), I still can’t believe how nice they were. Plus the pasta was absolutely delicious! On Sunday we didn’t do much since we both had to catch our flight in the afternoon – so we just went to the city centre of Dublin again, had some chai tea and maybe did a bit of shopping. And maybe, just maybe we went to an Italian restaurant again because you can never have enough pasta in your life. Anyway, I was really sad to head home because we had such a great time. I definitely want to go back one day for another weekend (or maybe longer) filled with good food, exploring and folk music.
Have you been to Dublin? xx