Insider Tips

48 Hours in Dublin

By Visit Dublin

15th May 2019

A modern, buzzing city with a rich past, Dublin has so much to offer. Sample a pint of the black stuff at the Guinness Storehouse, discover Ireland’s literary heroes at the Dublin Writers Museum, or take a short trip outside the city centre to experience Malahide Castle – Dublin has something for every traveller. We got out and about for 48 hours with the Dublin Pass Sightseeing Card, one of the best ways to experience all the city has to offer, while making great savings…

Day 1: Wake up to culture

Home to so many literary greats, it makes sense that your first morning in Dublin should focus around the written word. Grab some breakfast at Bewley’s Café, and walk it off by making your way to the Dublin Writers Museum, one of the more than 30 attractions included on the Dublin Pass Sightseeing Card.

A treasure trove of literary gems, the Writers Museum is located in a magnificent 18th century mansion, and is home to an impressive collection featuring the lives and works of Dublin's finest wordsmiths – Swift, Sheridan, Shaw, Wilde, Yeats, Joyce and Beckett are among the luminaries presented through the museum's stock of books, letters, portraits and personal items. Learn from the experts, and take one of the multilingual tours available throughout the day.

Haven’t had enough of Ireland’s scribes yet? Take your new-found literary knowledge and visit the James Joyce Centre on North Great George's Street, just a five-minute walk from the Writers Museum.

Surrounded by Joycean landmarks, including Belvedere College where the man himself went to school, the Centre houses a permanent interpretative exhibition that includes the front door to No. 7 Eccles Street (the home of Leopold and Molly Bloom), a copy of Joyce's death mask and the furniture from the apartment of Paul Leon where Joyce worked on his final novel, Finnegan's Wake.

The whole experience is included in the Dublin Pass Sightseeing Card, and you can also take a walking tour of Joyce's Dublin as part of your literary journey. Oh, and don’t worry about wasting time waiting in lines, the Dublin Pass means you’re an instant VIP at all of the included attractions (except Kilmainham Gaol, the Old Jameson Distillery and Dublinia as these are tour-based), leaving you with more time to explore Dublin.

Maybe sport is more your thing? If so, use your Dublin Pass Sightseeing Card to take in Dublin’s two magnificent stadiums. Croke Park, the home of the Gaelic Athletics Association (GAA) offers stadium and museum tours where you can learn about the history of the sport and its governing body in the 3rd largest stadium in Europe. Or go to the home of Irish rugby and soccer, the Aviva Stadium. See the dressing rooms and run onto the pitch like a sporting hero. 

DublinWritersMuseum_810x500-(1).jpgThe Dublin Writers Musuem

All aboard

Just a 15-minute stroll from the James Joyce Centre and down through Dublin's Docklands, sits the Jeanie Johnston Famine Ship.

Climb aboard this magnificent structure and discover what life was like during this tragic segment of Irish history, while marvelling at the skill, ingenuity and craftwork involved in re-creating this genuine replica of a wooden tall ship – your Dublin City Sightseeing Pass includes VIP free access!

JeanieJohnston_810x500.jpgThe Jeanie Johnston

A dramatic evening

Consider finishing off your day with a little Dublin theatre. Take in O'Connell Street, passing the Spire and the historic General Post Office (GPO) and work up an appetite for some pre-theatre dinner at the Church Bar and Restaurant before settling into a show at the Abbey Theatre.

Established in 1904 by the poet W. B. Yeats, the activist Edward Martyn and the dramatist Lady Gregory, who were all passionate about promoting the arts to strengthen Irish national pride, the Abbey is renowned as a writer's theatre and has contributed to some of the world's greatest theatrical works from writers such as J. M. Synge and Sean O'Casey through to modern-day classics from Brian Friel, Tom Murphy, Frank McGuiness – the list goes on. 

AbbeyTheatre_810x500.jpgActors on stage at the Abbey Theatre

Day 2: Explore Dublin history

Start your second day in Dublin at St Stephen’s Green and visit one of the most charming and interesting attractions in the city – The Little Museum of Dublin.

This eccentric small museum is full of treasures donated by ordinary Dubliners. It charts the cultural and social history of the city over the past century – from George Bernard Shaw to U2 and much more.

The best way to explore the museum is on one of the guided tours that happen on the hour, every hour. Admission and a tour are all included within the Dublin Pass Sightseeing Card, as well as a guidebook – bargain!

It’s a 15-minute walk from here (or a short bus ride) to Christ Church Cathedral – a vast, imposing structure that has sat in the heart of Dublin’s Old City for over 1000 years. No visit to Dublin is complete without venturing within its walls and soaking up its captivating atmosphere. The Cathedral Crypt is the oldest surviving structure in Dublin and is one of the largest medieval crypts in Europe.

Check out Dublinia next door to Christ Church, and be transported back in time to the very beginnings of Dublin City. St Michael’s Tower at the end of the tour gives a fantastic view of the city, allowing you to imagine how the landscape of the area has changed in the past centuries. Both Christ Church Cathedral and Dublinia are covered by your Dublin Pass, making them a bargain both culturally and financially!

LittleMuseum_810x500.jpgVisitors on a tour of the Little Museum of Dublin

Lunch and a glass of the black stuff

Stop for some traditional Irish fare at Gallagher’s Boxty House in Temple Bar, and indulge in a Boxty – a tasty filled potato pancake! Once your belly is full, cross the old city walls (you’ll spot lighting marking where they used to be on the pavements over Thomas Street) and walk up to the Guinness Storehouse, Ireland’s most visited attraction.

Located in the heart of the Guinness Brewery at St James's Gate, the Storehouse is a must-see for any visitor. Explore the history of this world-famous drink and claim your complimentary pint (you can even pour your own) in the Gravity Bar located on the seventh floor. Take a sip while enjoying spectacular views over Dublin and its surrounds.

Close by is Kilmainham Gaol (Jail), a fascinating insight into modern Irish history and well worth a visit if you have the energy!

Or maybe you would like to continue with the theme of locally-produced drinks by taking in a tour of the Old Jameson Distillery across the Liffey in Smithfield. Here you not only get to learn about the art of whiskey making, but you also earn a qualification as an official whiskey taster – all for free with your pass! 

They say you get to know what’s real about a city when you leave the centre of it, and Dublin’s surrounds are easy to get to and a real treat for visitors. The Dublin Pass includes entry to gems such as Glasnevin Cemetery, Malahide Castle, Dalkey Castle Heritage Centre and Castletown House and Parklands – all worth checking out if you have the time.

Then wind down the evening by immersing yourself in an activity that we Irish do well – storytelling. Have a wonderful dinner while learning about myths and legends in Dublin’s oldest pub The Brazen Head with the help of a 10% discount using your pass. If you still have the energy for exploring, join the Dublin Literary Pub Crawl to wrap up your time in Dublin with culture and craic, all while making a saving of 25%.

GuinnessStorehouse_810x500.jpgThe Guinness Storehouse

Getting there

Whether you prefer road, sea or air, Dublin is really accessible, making it the perfect spot for a quick city break. And, once you pick up your Dublin Pass Sightseeing Card, getting around is even easier! With free entry to over 30 of Dublin's best attractions, along with discounts and exclusive offers at 20 additional venues, this pass is the best way to make the most of our beautiful city.

Find out more about Dublin's most popular attractions and buy your Dublin Pass Sightseeing Card online.

Visit Dublin

Visit Dublin | Dublin's Official Tourism Site

Tweet us @visitdublin