November 29, 2016

outside the cute blue door of our airbnb

Éirinn go Brách! I have always been proud of my Irish roots and have been blessed with many opportunities to travel there with my family several times-- in fact, before arriving in London for the semester, the only place in Europe I had ever been was Ireland.  That said, I jumped on the opportunity to return when Hannah and her high school friend, Katie, who is studying in Barcelona, asked if I wanted to come to Dublin with them. 

We hopped on the short RyanAir flight --which was terrifyingly turbulent-- and landed in Ireland late Thursday night. The next morning, we woke up and left our Airbnb in time for a traditional Irish breakfast (minus the black pudding).

Despite having already been to Ireland, I had never actually seen Dublin and was excited to visit the many historic sites and churches located there. It is such a cool city because it combines history and Irish heritage with modern artsy vibes and good shopping- right up my alley. We spent the first day wandering the streets and cramming in sightseeing. 

Trinity College Library

Christchurch Cathedral

St. Patrick's Cathedral

Temple Bar

This is a cool artsy area of Dublin, complete with cool wall murals and trendy pubs/bars playing live music. It is also home to Dublin's famous pub, The Temple Bar, which we stopped in to get drinks before dinner and listen to a fun quintessential Irish band.

The Guinness Storehouse
The next day we were all excited to be visiting the Guinness Storehouse. While Katie and I were certainly more open to the idea of drinking beer than Hannah (strictly a wine girl with the occasional mojito-- can't blame her), all three of us were pumped to pay a visit to this Irish landmark and it did not disappoint. Complete with a full museum which detailed the history of Guinness in Ireland, the factory was both fun and educational.  My personal favorite part of the museum was the advertising exhibit, a display of Guinness's iconic advertising over the years. 


Once we moved past the educational part, we reached the beer. We started with a tasting where we learned the proper way to enjoy a Guinness, followed by a mini workshop where we learned how to pour the perfect pint. We all passed with flying colors and were recognized with a certificate and our personal pint to enjoy. A little apprehensive to try Guinness (I was disgusted by it when I first tried it the last time I was in Ireland in 2014), I was pleasantly surprised by the fact that my taste buds had matured beyond restricting their appreciation of beer to frat basements, and I was actually enjoying it. #adulting


Cliffs of Moher

After getting our fill of Guinness and Dublin, we ventured early Sunday morning to meet a tour bus bound for the Cliffs of Moher and the Atlantic Coast. I was very excited for this day because this is the area of Ireland where I have spent a lot of time with my family. We actually drove right by the home of a family friend where we stayed for 2 weeks last time we were in Ireland. It was a long bus ride away from Dublin, but the views were worth the trip.  We got to spend 2 hours at the Cliffs of Moher, one of my absolute favorite natural wonders that still astonishes me every time I see it. 


Thank you Ireland, go raibh maith agat! Until next time!

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