Before studying abroad, everyone kept telling me that Ireland was the place to visit.
“The people are brilliant”
“The accents are to die for”
“The landscape is beautiful”
“The pubs are unbeatable”
You name it, it was said. I figured if everyone was raving about it, then why not book a trip! Within the first couple weeks of being in Prague, my roommate Danielle and our friend Kyle booked a flight and hostel to Dublin and that was that. Last weekend came around and we all packed our bags and headed off to the land of the Irish.
I tried my hardest not to have any expectations about Ireland. Could it really be that great? How silly was I? Of course it could be and I realized it before we even hit the ground. The flight attendant got on the speaker and announced that we were beginning our descent and I look out the window to see this beaut. A big ‘ole Irish rainbow. Sigh, the little things in life. It was a sign that we were beginning an unforgettable journey…
We arrived Thursday afternoon and checked into our hostel right on the river and began walking around the city and pub-hopping along the way. We met some locals who told us if you’re looking for a good time just ask someone “Where the craic is at” or “Where can I find some craic?”. Needless to say, we thought we had made a big mistake in heading to Ireland, but then they informed us that is what the Irish say for “fun”. Glad we cleared that one up quickly!
Like most people in Dublin, we ended up on Temple Street almost every night – especially Temple Bar. The two nights we went there, a man named Dave Browne and a female singer were performing live music and they were so good. I want them to play at my wedding. No jokes. Each song was about 20 minutes long and a medley of a handful of different songs, not to mention they were both so talented, him with the guitar and her with her voice. Amazing. Also a fun fact, Dave Browne is the Guinness Book of World Records holder for “Longest Marathon Guitar Playing” where he played at the Temple Bar for 114 hours straight. He’s just that good.
Although we had our fair share of craic, we also went on a free walking tour (do you see a theme here?) of the city and got to see all of the sites, including Dublin Castle, above. Trinity College, St. Stephens and Christ Church Cathedral were also included and the most beautiful parts of Dublin, in my opinion. The city itself seemed more like a big city that you would find back home in the states and my favorite places were a little hike away from the main strip.
Long story short, I fell in love with Dublin. Not necessarily the city itself, but the people, the energy, the environment, the zest for life, the accents, the love for rugby and the live music had me hooked. Boy, am I a sucker for live music. I was in heaven. I can’t wait to make it back to Ireland one day.