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The Journey: Malahide

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Medieval meets modernity in the beautiful seaside village of Malahide. American writer Kate Burke and photographer Chloë Keogan recently explored the village’s castle, marina and many cosy restaurants and cafés…

The Journey: Malahide

First stop – breakfast!

Excitedly looking forward to the day ahead, Chloë and I met bright and early in Dublin city-centre. We’d heard lots about the quaint village of Malahide, with its medieval charm and chic boutiques, and were eager to begin our adventure!

And so, we hopped on the DART at Dublin’s Pearse Street, and arrived at Malahide Station on the northside of the city just 30 minutes later. We definitely had our priorities straight: first stop – breakfast! Coffee Scene, located just two minutes from the station, serves up hearty Irish breakfasts and rich, flavoursome coffee.

Guided tour

With our tummies full, we set off for the pride of this charming village – Malahide Castle. The beauty of Malahide is in its intimate size; all its amenities are easily accessible, meaning we arrived at the castle after just a 15-minute stroll, taking in its beautiful parklands en route. Positively steeped in history, the foreboding castle dates back to the twelfth century, and amazingly, served as a residence right up until the 1970s. We opted for a guided tour, which is highly recommended, as our tour guide Darina really knew her stuff!

The Journey: Malahide
The Journey: Malahide

Step back in time

Regaling us with fascinating tales of the Talbot family (who owned the castle for over 800 years), it really was like stepping back in time. What’s more, Darina’s chilling ghost stories definitely added to the atmosphere!


With every nook of this majestic castle explored, Chloë and I went for a wander around the castle’s gardens. It’s hard to believe such a beautiful green oasis can be found so close to the city. Weeping willows, bright flowers – and even the odd peacock! – can be found within this secret garden’s walls.

The Journey: Malahide
The Journey: Malahide


At this stage, we were starting to get a little peckish again, and so we opted for lunch in the homely Garden House Café. The perfect spot to while away an afternoon, I can’t recommend the fish & chips enough!


We decided a bit more exploration would work off the lunch, and headed along the coastal road towards neighbouring village, Portmarnock. This walk offers some stunning views of Dublin Bay. We could see Lambay Island, Howth, and right across to Dún Laoghaire harbour on the southside.

Since Malahide is home to an array of chic boutiques and stores, we decided to wander through the village to check them out. You’ll find elegant ladies wear from a host of international designers in Bianco, while down the road there’s Ireland’s only dedicated Marc Cain store. We also visited the charming independent Manor Books shop, before saying hello to the folks in the Really Old Sweet Shop. All in the name of research you understand!

The Journey: Malahide


We rounded up our day in Malahide with dinner in Duffy’s on the village’s Main Street. Comfy yet modern, it boasts an amazing local seafood menu, with specials on Friday costing just €5. There’s an outdoor terrace too, where you can soak up the seaside atmosphere over a quiet pint. As we made for the DART station, we couldn’t resist popping into Gibney’s once we heard the traditional music playing inside! Check it out for an authentic slice of Dublin.

And all too soon, it was all aboard the DART once again, as we made the short journey back to the city-centre. One thing’s for sure though, we’ll be heading back to the quaint and charming village of Malahide very soon.