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Travel in Dublin Ireland

Dublin, the fair city, capital of the Republic of Ireland is situated on the eastern side of the emerald isle and offers the many facilities as any large European city while still maintaining the most traditional of Irish culture and hospitality.

Dublin has attractions to suit everyone's taste, from museums to shopping, from castles to sport centres, from churches to restaurants, and of course a very special and exciting night life with pubs, cafes and night clubs. Getting bored in Dublin is virtually impossible.

Dublin has some wonderful parts to explore, like the River Liffey that slices the city in half, or Grafton Street, the vibrant shopping heart of the city, and of course the famous O'Connell Street, the main artery of Dublin's city centre. The home of Oscar Wilde, this city will prove a great experience for anyone, surrounded by music and the hospitality of the Dubliners.

Dublin's centre is compact enough to walk across in half an hour. City buses are plentiful, the new Luas modern trams run frequently, and the excellent DART urban railway which hugs the coastline for miles and buzzes you north and south to suburban stations and on out of the city in minutes.

South of the River Liffey is the beautiful Georgian quarter and traditionally the trendiest part of Dublin - especially the revamped riverside area of Temple Bar with its cobbled streets, arty venues and smart little eateries and shops. Some find it a bit contrived, but this is still the trendiest part of town. Capuccinistas practise their pouts at Cafe en Seine on Dawson Street.

The gloriously illustrated, 140-year-old medieval manuscript called the Book of Kells at Trinity.

College is probably the most beautiful book in the world, housed in the great vaulted Long Room - perhaps the finest interior in Dublin. Trinity College is also a famous seat of learning and one of the great universities of Europe. The long list of famous ex-students includes Samuel Beckett, Edmund Burke and Oscar Wilde.

Out west of the city centre, the national monument of Kilmainham Gaol gives you a fascinating and very moving, if chilling, insight into modern Irish history. This is where the leaders of the 1916 rising were executed here, radicalizing the Irish public and marking the beginning of the end of the British administration in Dublin.

Dublin's pubs are very famous, especially for the 'craic' (general good-time atmosphere), conversation, music and of course excellent Guinness. For the black stuff experience, try Mulligan's of Poolbeg Street. Celebrity spotting takes place in Doheny & Nesbitt's in Lower Baggot Street near St Stephen's Green.

Three good literary pubs in the pedestrianised streets east of Grafton Street are Davy Byrne's in Duke Street (James Joyce) and McDaid's in Harry Street (poet Patrick Kavanagh, playwright Brendan Behan). For musical pubs try the St John Gogarty on Fleet Street in Temple Bar, O'Donoghue's in Merrion Row and for session tunes take your irish drum or 'bodhran' to Lower Bridge Street where O'Shea's Merchant and the Brazen Head face each other, or north of the Liffey to the Cobblestone Bar on North King Street.

PoD on Harcourt Street is still one of the trendiest nightclubs. At the Gaiety on South King Street it's hot salsa on Fridays and souls and R&B on Saturdays. The Thomas House on Thomas Street offers techno a-go-go in a friendly club atmosphere. And try The Kitchen at the Clarence Hotel on Wellington Quay -famous rock band owners U2 are unlikely to be there, but in Ireland you can never know what to expect.

In Temple Bar, it's Eden on Meeting House Square for excellent modern cookery. Poppadom Restaurant on Rathgar Road offers proper, authentic Indian cookery. Bang Cafe is a great place down on Merrion Row. As for seafood - ride the DART out to Sandycove and taste the flavours fresh out of the sea at Caviston's Seafood Restaurant.

Other places of worthwhile visit include the National Gallery, National Museum or Leinster House home of the Irish Parliament. The Guinness Storehouse and Jameson Whiskey Distillery are highly recommended, for their regular tours and thirsty visitors can trace the journey and history of this fascinating world-of much loved beer and whiskey. The Guinness Store is now Ireland's number one tourist attraction, after all 14.3 million pints of Guinness is stored there.

Travel by Bus Dublin has a large network of buses, most of which are green double-deckers. The majority of the buses commence in the city centre. Buses travelling to the north of Dublin start at Lower Abbey Street / Parnell Street area. Those to the west begin in Middle Abbey Street and in the Aston Quay area.

Routes to the southern suburbs start at Eden Quay and in the College Street area. Fares are usually very inexpensive and this provides a cheap and useful way to travel. There are also many hops on / off tours and shuttle buses, which operate in and around the city and are an ideal way to both sightsee and travel.

Travel by Taxi Taxis are around in abundance, but the best places to find cabs are at taxi stands at either train stations, bus stations or outside some hotels. Prices are based on metered mileage and there is a minimum charge. There are a whole range of taxi companies that operate throughout the city. Hackney cabs, which also operate in the city, do not have roof signs and are not metered, so it is important to establish the fare beforehand.

Rules of the Road: The Irish, like the British, drive on the left-hand side of the road, with their cars having the steering wheel on the right and gear levers on the left.Seat belts must be worn by the driver and passengers at all times.

Children under 12 must travel in the back unless riding in a car seat. Drink-driving laws are strict and Ireland has a breathalyzer test, which the police can administer if necessary. Parking can be a problem and signs with the letter 'P' indicate that parking is permitted. Signs with a line through the letter 'P' indicates that parking is NOT permitted and parking here may result are a fine, or even getting towed away.

Travel by Car Hire/Rental Motor traffic in Dublin, Ireland has dramatically increased in the last few years and as a result the city has become very congested during commuter hours. A car provides a very easy and convenient way to travel outside of the city centre. If you do not bring your own car, there is a multitude of car rental firms to choose from. Car rental can be quite expensive in the peak summer season and the best rates can be obtained by booking in advance or online.

To rent a car you must show a full driver's licence and a credit card in the driver's name. Cars are usually rented to customers between the ages of 23 to 70 years, although some companies can make exceptions.

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