“May the road rise to meet you.” - Irish Proverb
With the dynamic old town and its diverse culture, Dublin is one of the best European cities to visit. Also known as “the city of a thousand coloured doors”, Ireland’s capital city Dublin has a vibrant nightlife and a fascinating history and according to the Central Statistics Office, in 2019, there were over 10 million visitors to Ireland.
You have to visit Dublin!
You’ve booked the flights, got time off work, great!
Not sure where to stay? Not sure which area is most central?
We’ve got the answers!
You can learn about online English courses here.
Temple Bar, Staying in Dublin’s Centre
Not far from Grafton Street and the Liffey River, we find Temple Bar. If you know a bit about Dublin already, you’ve probably heard of Temple Bar. Right in the centre of the city, it’s home to Dublin’s most famous pubs.
Temple Bar is a great place for a party or to find accommodation. It’s probably the best base from which to visit the city.
On the other hand, to find a cheap hotel, you’ll probably want to look at the other parts of town because Temple Bar is quite expensive. Of course, the entertainment and the many pubs may bother those who came for a bit of peace!
Staying in Dublin: O’Connell Street, the Tourist Quarter
If you want to stay in central Dublin, the area around O’Connell Street is ideal. The advantage of this neighbourhood is that the hotels are affordable and the location is great.
According to the Central Statistics Office, tourists in Ireland stayed in hotels for a total of 70.9 million nights in 2018, up from 68.7 million in 2017. You’ll want to find the best hotels in the best neighbourhoods.
O’Connell Street is to the north of the Liffey River just outside of the dead centre of Dublin. It’s Dublin's Champs Elysées and for good reason. There are plenty of shops and restaurants.
It’s touristy during the day but quiet at night. O’Connell Street is part of the Dublin 1 postcode so it’s still quite costly if you want to find accommodation there. That said, it’s worth it to visit Dublin!
Smithfield, Residential Dublin
Alongside Stoneybatter, Smithfield is a predominantly residential neighbourhood. Residential generally means quieter. Around 20 minutes from Dublin city centre, Smithfield has quite a few things going for it.
There are plenty of bars which gives the impression that you’re in a village rather than the city home to O’Connell Street and Temple Bar. Smithfield is a good place for your accommodation as you’ll pay less than you would in the heart of the city.
You get more for your money here and you can also enjoy markets and the Old Jameson Whisky Distillery in Smithfield.
The best thing about it?
How close it is to Phoenix Park, 700 hectares of green space for you to relax in.
It’s a nice place to stay and a nice place to visit. Residential areas are generally calmer than the tourist spots.
The Georgian Quarter
“In Ireland, it happens sometimes that the insane are taken to be saints of a kind.” - William Trevor
Dublin has the nickname of “the city of a thousand coloured doors” mainly due to the buildings in the Georgian Quarter, which is also a really nice place to stay.
To the south of the River Liffey, this place is great for those who love architecture. Between the famed Trinity College and the beautiful houses, this is a really nice place to walk around.
It’s also home to Grafton Street, a great place to do some shopping. You should know that the Georgian Quarter is quite trendy, though. The prices reflect this.
Staying in the Georgian Quarter does mean you’ll be surrounded by wonderful buildings, nice parks, and great places to walk around. If you want urban architecture and green spaces, this is the place to go.
Staying in Dublin: The Docklands
A bit out of the way, this is an up-and-coming part of the city. Staying here means that you’ll get some quiet at night. To the east of the touristy city centre, the Docklands area is quiet.
Despite its geographical location, it’s well connected in terms of public transport and easy to get to. While this area was home to the city’s docks, it’s now being modernised.
You can still see vestiges of the area’s past. Of the things to do here, you can visit the Famine Memorial, the museum of sculptures paying tribute to the Great Famine that took place between 1845 and 1849.
Dublin’s Docklands is gaining in popularity but for the moment, is still quite accessible. Enjoy it before it’s too late. It’s great to come home to after an evening in Temple Bar.
St. Stephen’s Green, Dublin’s Green Quarter
St. Stephen’s Green is the name of a large park in Dublin city centre. With youth hostels, holiday rentals, and hotels, this area has a few tricks up its sleeve.
St. Stephen’s Green is the lungs of Dublin and can be found to the south of the city. Accommodation is cheaper than in the centre and Dublin’s nightlife is just 15 to 20 minutes away.
It’s also calmer than the city centre and a great compromise between location and cost. How can you argue with 9 hectares of green spaces? Families will agree that this is one of the best places to stay. Mother Nature works her magic even in the hearts of cities.
For a weekend or longer, Dublin is a great place to visit whether you’re looking for lively nightlife or some peace and quiet. That’s the joy of Ireland. There are areas for everyone.
So whether you’re staying in a holiday flat or luxury hotel, the area you choose is paramount!
If you'd like to improve your English before you go to Dublin, consider getting help from one of the many talented and experienced private tutors on Superprof! There are English tutors all over the world ready to help you with your English and many of them are even native speakers.
There are three types of private tutorials available and the one that's right for you really depends on your level in English and your goals.
Face-to-face private tutorials are great for learning languages as it's just you and your tutor and you'll have plenty of opportunities to use the language you're learning, which is arguably the best way to get better at it. Additionally, the lessons will be tailored to you and what you want to learn. You can brush up on vocabulary unique to Dublin and Ireland before your trip or focus on the type of language that's useful for tourists.
If you can't find any private tutors with English skills in your area, you can always look for online private tutors. Since they can teach you from anywhere in the world, this means you can learn from native English speakers in English-speaking countries. This is really good if you want to learn Irish English from a genuine Dubliner. These types of tutorials are usually cheaper, too, as the tutor doesn't have to travel to their students and can schedule more lessons per week.
Finally, there are group tutorials. These are also a good option for learning foreign languages as it allows students to practise the language with their peers rather than with just the tutor, which can be quite daunting as they're obviously already very good at speaking the language. These are a good option for students on a budget as they work out cheaper per student per hour.
Generally, the right type of tutorial will depend on your budget, with face-to-face tutorials being the most expensive and group tutorials usually being the cheapest. You mightn't want to pay for costly tailored lessons if you're in no real rush to learn English but they might be worth it if you need English for an upcoming work meeting and it's paramount that your English is of a good level.
Don't forget that many tutors offer the first hour of tutoring for free so use these sessions to try a few different tutors out and see who's right for you. As you'll be talking to them a lot, it's important that you really get along with them and enjoy their teaching style.