Dublin – A virtual tour of the capital of Ireland

Two-day virtual walking tour

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Dublin, the capital of Ireland, is a lively and welcoming city, known for the friendliness of the Dubliners and famous for its “craic” (crack) – a mixture of humour, intelligence and assuring calm, that has attracted writers, intellectuals, and visitors for centuries. Situated on a bay on the east coast, at the mouth of the River Liffey, it is a city with many merits and interesting attractions. It is a also a dream destination for music lovers, as the birthplace of many famous musicians and singers, and has an active and energetic rock and folk music scene.

Now that traveling is difficult or even impossible, let’s embark on a two-day virtual walking tour of this unique European capital.

Day 1 :

Wander around St Patrick’s gardens…

St Patrick’s Cathedral is the starting point for the first day of the walking tour. Ireland’s largest church was founded next to St Patrick’s sacred well. It has been a holy place since the 5th century and the present building dates back in the 13th century. Over the centuries St Patrick came to be seen as the people’s church, while the Christ Church Cathedral was associated with the English rule. The interior of the church is full of monuments but most visitors come to see the memorials of Jonathan Swift (the writer of Gulliver’s Travels), who was the Dean of the Cathedral.

From St Patrick ‘s gardens follow Golden Lane, Steven Street and turn left onto William Street to end in front of Powerscourt Townhouse Centre.

Look down at the eclosed courtyard…

Powerscourt Townhouse Centre was a grand mansion, completed in 1774, as the city house of Viscount Powerhouse. Today the building houses one of the city’s best shopping centres. Elements of the original construction have been preserved, like the impressive mahogany staircase. The enclosed central courtyard with the glass dome is a popular meeting place with Dubliners. Highlights of the Centre include the all-day restaurant Pepper Pot and Little Pyg pizzeria.

Exit the Centre and follow Castle Market, enter George’s Street Arcade (the first purpose-built Victorian shopping centre in Dublin). Exit the Arcade and turn right onto South Great George’s Street. Continue to Temple Lane and end in the centre of Temple Bar.

Cross the street and enter the Temple Bar pub

Temple Bar is described by many as the city’s “officially designated arts zone”. It is one of the oldest parts of the city and over the years has maintained its scenic medieval identity and narrow cobbled streets. Today the area is an interesting mix of galleries, theatres, pubs, souvenir shops, fast-food restaurants and night clubs. Some of the most famous pubs of the city are located here, including Temple Bar, Merchant’s Arch, Aud Dubliner and Oliver St John Gogarty’s.

Outside the Temple Bar pub follow Fownes Street and reach the bank of River Liffey. The famous Ha’penny Bridge is located at this point.

Walk on the river bank…

Ha’penny Bridge is officially called Liffey Bridge. Before its construction, passenger ferries carried the Dubliners across the river. At the beginning of the 19th century the authorities called the ferry owners to either repair their boats or the city would need a bridge. Then the ferry owner William Walsh was elected to built the bridge, as long as he was entitled to a toll of a halfpenny (or ha’penny) from anyone crossing it for the next 100 years. The city allowed him and his family to extract the toll until 1919.

Continue on the river bank and turn left onto Parliament Street, cross Dame Street and enter the yard of Dublin Castle through the gate on Palace Street.

Pass through the gate and enter the Castle’s yard…

Dublin Castle was for seven centuries the seat of English rule. All that remains of the original building is the Record Tower. After a fire in 1684 the Castle was rebuild in its present form. On the first floor of the south side are the luxury State Apartments, including St Patrick’s Hall, which contains one of the most important and distinctive decorative interiors in Ireland. In this hall, every seven years, takes place the inauguration of the Irish President. After (or before) the visit to the Castle make a stop to Queen of Tarts (Dame Street & Cork Hill) for delicious savory and sweet tarts.

Exit from the yard to Castle Street, turn left and walk down the street until you reach Christ Church Cathedral.

Walk under the Cathedral’s Synod Hall Bridge…

Christ Church Cathedral was established by the first bishop of Dublin and was rebuild in 1186. It is the Cathedral for the Anglican Church of Ireland. Ιnside the Cathedral is the tomb of Strongbow, the nobleman who lead the Anglo-Norman invasion of Ireland. Also inside the recently restored Crypt, a mummified cat and rat are displayed. They were found in a organ pipe and grew to literary fame after James Joyce wrote of their chase in his famous book. The Synod Hall Bridge was added in the 1870s.

After a busy day, relax and continue the night in one of Dublin’s pubs, for a true Irish experience and amazing music...

Irish pubs are characterised by a unique culture based on their casual and friendly atmosphere, generous food and drink, sports and the wonderful traditional Irish music. Their appeal has led to the Irish pub theme spreading around the world and becoming synonym to pure entertainment.

End of 1st day


Day 2 :

Explore the College campus…

Trinity College is the starting point for the second day of the walking tour. The College was founded in 1592 by Queen Elizabeth I on the site of a monastery. The College campus is often ranked among the most beautiful university campuses in the world, due to its impressive Georgian buildings. The main attraction is the Old Library, which houses the Long Room and the Book of Kells Exhibition. The Long Room has an enormous collection, which includes a rare copy of the Proclamation of the Irish Republic in 1916 and a 15th-century wooden harp (the model for the current emblem of Ireland).

After purchasing tickets online, enter the Old Library and head for the Long Room and the Book of Kells

Look around the spectacular Long Room…

Book of Kells is the most decorated Irish medieval manuscript and may have been the work of monks from Iona Island (in the Inner Hebrides), who fled to Kells in 806 after a Viking raid. The book, which was moved to Trinity College in the 17th century, contains the four gospels in Latin. The illustrations and ornamentation of the Book surpass that of other Gospel books in extravagance and complexity. The decoration combines traditional Christian iconography with ornate swirling motifs (follow this link for a digital version of the manuscript).

Leave College at College Green and follow Grafton Street. After a few meters turn right onto Suffolk Street and meet the statue of Molly Malone...

See the statue and hear the song…

Molly Malone is a popular folk song set in Dublin, which with the passage of time has become its unofficial anthem. The song tells the tale of a proud woman who sell fishes on the streets of Dublin and died young of a fever. In the late 20th century a legend grew up that there was a historical Molly, who lived in the 17th century. A statue representing Molly Malone was unveiled during the 1988 Dublin Millennium celebrations, when 13 June was declared to be Molly Malone Day.

Return to Grafton Street and turn right…

See the shop windows along Grafton Street…

Grafton Street is one of the principal shopping streets in Dublin. In other European capitals, people gather along grand boulevards to shop, lunch and drink. In Dublin the locals head to Grafton Street, a narrow winding road which has been the heart of the city’s social life for more than a century. The street is also full with street artists including musicians, poets and mime artists. At the intersection of Grafton and Harry Street you could see the statue of Phil Lynott (the singer and leader of the world famous group Thin Lizzy).

Take a break and continue the tour in the afternoon in the northern part of the city …

Walk down O’ Connell Street and admire the GPO (on the left) and the Spire (straight ahead)…

O’ Connell Street is the epicentre north of River Lifey and one of the city’s main routes. A walk down the central mall in the best way to see the interesting mix of buildings and monuments lining the route. At the south end stands the monument of Daniel O’ Connell and higher up the statue of James Larkin, leader of the Dublin general strike in 1913, which faces the building of the General Post Office (GPO). GPO became a symbol of the 1916 Irish Rising, when members of the Irish Citizen Army seized the building. Near the end of O’ Connell street is the city’s new landmark, the Spire, a large, stainless steel, pin-like monument 120 meters in height.

Take a short detour from O’ Connell and visit Henry Street...

Walk down Henry Street and get lost in the crowd…

Henry Street was pedestrianised in the early 1980’s and since then has become one of the premiere shopping destinations in Dublin. The thoroughfare of central Dublin has shopping centres and numerous chain-retailers. Arnotts, on Henry Street, is the oldest and largest department store in Ireland, dating back in 1843. While walking down Henry Street make a mandatory stop to buy Butlers chocolates from Butlers Chocolate Cafe (31 Henry Street).

The second day is over. Satisfy your appetite at Leo Burdock with traditional fish and chips...

Fish and Chips were introduced to Ireland by an Italian immigrant, but became so popular that they are considered part of the Irish tradition. There are many places in Dublin that make fish and chips (known in Ireland as “chippers”) but one of the most famous and tasty could be found at Leo Burdock. Their story started in 1913 when Bella Burdock and husband Patrick opened the first Leo Burdock in Christchurch.

End of 2nd Day


Photo by Sam Barber on Unsplash

No visit in Dublin would be complete without drinking a glass of Guinness beer. Guinness is a dark Irish dry stout that originated in the brewery of Arthur Guinness at St. James’s Gate in Dublin in 1759. It is one of the most successful alcohol brands worldwide and could be considered the Irish national drink. Guinness Storehouse is a tourist attraction in Dublin and since opening in 2000, it has received over twenty million visitors.

We hope you enjoyed this short tour of Dublin’s most famous landmarks. Nothing could make you completely feel the unique atmosphere of the city, but this article is a good start.

*(Photo at the top by Gregory DALLEAU on Unsplash)


Published by Antonis Tsapepas

Passionate traveler, food lover and blogger.

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