So you and your friends have finally booked that getaway weekend to Dublin. But wait! You’ll be here on that most dreaded of dates; February 14 - aka Valentine’s Day - and are feeling mildly concerned you’ll spend the weekend wading through a sea of flowers, chocolates and inappropriate PDAs.
Fear not, help is at hand! We’ve put together the least romantic itinerary known to man – meaning you’ll enjoy all our amazing city has to offer, without setting sight on a single rose petal!
We recommend you kick off Day 1 with a hearty brunch at Whitefriar Grill on Aungier Street. Depending on what went down the night before, you might opt for their ‘Walk of Shame’ burrito – hey, we’re not here to judge. From here, you can laugh heartily (crying inside optional) at the many couples flocking to visit the relics of the man himself, St. Valentine, in the adjacent Whitefriar Church. What’s more, the good folks at Whitefriar Grill serve up a delicious array of brunch cocktails, including their infamous no-nonsense Bloody Mary. Who needs Champagne?!
By now, you’ll be ready for an afternoon activity, but won’t want to run the risk of being surrounded by an army of smooching couples. So why not take a tour on the Ghost Bus? This fun tour of the city’s most haunted spots is just the right level of macabre for the weekend that’s in it, and most likely won’t attract any star-crossed lovers. You’ll visit spooky historical destinations like the Crypt beneath Christchurch Cathedral and the very terrifying graveyard at St. Kevin’s Park, where your guide will recount various tales of misery and despair. Enjoy!
Next up? A rugged slice of the wild outdoors. You’ll be so focused on the fun you’re having, you’ll (momentarily) forget about the emptiness eating away at your soul. For the ultimate Dublin adventure, why not give power boating a whirl? The good folks at Adventure Training Ireland run regular two-hour tours, kicking off on the majestic Liffey, before heading out into Dublin Bay. What’s more, you’ll even get to drive the boat! Just make sure you don’t come over all emotional as you gaze out at beautiful Dún Laoghaire, or it’ll be man overboard…
Peckish? Here’s where it gets tricky. Though there are many fantastic restaurants in Dublin, chances are they’ll be full of couples sharing spaghetti over candlelight. And nobody wants to see that. Heed our advice, and make your way to Dublin’s best chipper – the mighty Leo Burdock’s in the historical quarter of Christchurch, and sample their amazing cod and chips. Then maybe pop next door for a pint or two of the black stuff – the Lord Edward is a traditional Irish boozer frequented by locals in the area. Alternatively, get thee to Kehoe’s on South Anne Street. It’s traditional and homely too – boasting cosy snugs, stained-glass windows and intimate partitions – but attracts a younger, more fun-loving crowd!
For some potential match-making (no wait, hear us out!) there’s a fun Queen of Hearts event taking place in the very plush Liquor Rooms on Wellington Quay. Notes will be provided and punters encouraged to write to their secret crushes in the room. To get you in the mood for lurve, DJs will play the most sublime jazz, funk and soul, while there’ll be special Valentine’s cocktails on offer at the bar.
If you then fancy an alternative night on the town with the guy/girl you just picked up in the Liquor Rooms, we highly recommend heading along to a special ‘anti Valentine’s’ performance of The Rocky Horror Picture Show in the very cool Sugar Club on Lower Leeson Street. Offering a “filthy night of depravity and delight” (we’re sold!), the Rocky Ireland crew always put on a wildly fun, no-holds-barred show, with audience participation a must. Partners aren’t necessary, they tell us, but neither are pants – so go figure!
(Facebook image via Jackie)