Our long weekend in Dublin, Ireland, including Teeling Distillery, Guinness Storehouse, Jameson Distillery Bow St., Temple Bar and more.
Our most recent adventure took us back to a city we’ve visited once before: Dublin. Our last visit was in 2015 (see previous post here!), but we didn’t get to spend a ton of time enjoying Dublin itself as we spent a lot of time on the road seeing sites such as the Cliffs of Moher, the Rock of Cashel and others.
This time, the highlight of our trip was the Taylor Swift Reputation Tour at Croke Park Stadium, and we spent the remainder of the long weekend hanging out in Dublin seeing what it had to offer.
Getting there & getting around
We flew to Dublin from Frankfurt Main via RyanAir. Once we arrived, we took the AirLink Express to the city center, which we booked online in advance for 11 euros per person roundtrip. Within Dublin, there are several options for public transportation — busses, trains, trams and several tour companies offering Hop On Hop Off tours. You can also see a lot of Dublin simply by walking. We only used the bus one day of our stay, because we were hitting multiple attractions and the HoHo bus was included in our Dublin Pass (explained more below).
What to do
The following recommendations are going to make it sound like all Dublin has to offer is good alcohol. There is certainly more to the city than beer and whiskey! But this is what piqued our interest this time around.
We decided to visit the Teeling Distillery, the Guinness Storehouse and the Jameson Distillery Bow St. in one day. It’s a long day but it’s doable as long as you don’t mind starting your day with whiskey before noon.
After some research, we found that it made sense for us to purchase a Dublin Pass, which included entrance to all of these attractions and also transportation between each one via the HoHo bus. The pass was cheaper than paying entry to each place individually and it came in handy at the Guinness Storehouse where we got to skip a very long line for general admission. So, look into it.
If you’re seeing enough attractions to equal the cost of the pass, go for it! The reason we did them all in one day is because the Dublin Pass is only good for one day (you can, of course, purchase multiple days — but then the cost wouldn’t have been justified unless we hit a few more attractions).
This whiskey distillery opened in 2015 — the first new whiskey distillery to open in Dublin in over 125 years!
A short (approx. 20 min.) tour takes you first through a brief history of Ireland’s whiskey production history, decline and regrowth, then to the room where all the magic happens (fermentation, distillation, etc.) and finally ends with a tasting.
Our basic tour included just one sample of the whiskey and also one whiskey & ginger ale cocktail, but you have the option to upgrade your tasting and sample additional Teeling varieties. We decided we had enough alcohol coming later in the day… not to mention, it was only 11 a.m.
What an impressive and fun experience! This one is certainly more touristy — it’s a self-paced tour of a seven story building that details Guinness’ history, brewing process, fun facts and includes a tasting and a free pint.
Note: Guinness isn’t actually produced here, that happens at St. James’s Gate Brewery. The Storehouse is just a fun thing to do. Plus, you get to “pour the perfect pint” of Guinness and get a fancy looking certificate with your name on it.
Allow at least two hours for this attraction. We were there for about three hours, including a drink at the Gravity Bar (great views over Dublin) and a meal at one of the fifth floor restaurants.
Jameson Distillery Bow St.
The Jameson Distillery Bow St. tour takes place in the former factory which opened in the late 1700s (but is no longer used for the whiskey production today).
The basic distillery tour (approx. 30 min.) gives a brief history lesson much like Teeling followed by a tasting. We enjoyed the tour at Teeling more, but the tasting at Jameson was our favorite. We tasted and compared Scotch whisky, American whiskey and Jameson and learned about the differences between each. Our experience also included a drink from the bar on the ground floor.
Six shots of whiskey and two pints of Guiness later, our day drinking tour was over, but the fun wasn’t!
Temple Bar is a lively area along the south bank of the River Liffey full of bars and restaurants with live music everywhere you turn. It is also home to the iconic Temple Bar — worth a visit, but expect it to be crowded!
It’s fun to hop from pub to pub in Temple Bar and see what’s going on in each. However, the place we spent the most time was Oliver St. John Gogarty’s. This bar was our favorite during our visit in 2015, so we knew we had to return. We enjoyed live music and Irish dancing at Gogarty’s along with a fun and lively crowd each night.
Expect to spend anywhere from €6-10 per pint at a pub in Temple Bar, but a nice thing to note is that every pub we went to took card (a rarity in Germany).
Places to eat
I don’t have much to add here because we actually didn’t go to a single restaurant during our stay except for the one at the Guinness Storehouse. Our hotel provided Irish breakfast, two days in a row we ate at Boojum (similar to Chipotle), one night we had to eat stadium food at the concert and one night we ate bar food at Bad Bob’s in Temple Bar — really good bar food though. I’d recommend Bad Bob’s for food in Temple Bar, and I’d definitely recommend Boojum for a burrito stop any time, any day!