Dublin, Ireland

The customs agent was very concerned about letting us into the country. As the trip is fluid, I was unsure if we would be staying 4 or 6 days and that raised her suspicions significantly. I explained we were traveling for a year and she grew more suspicious. I ended up reading her the planned itinerary for the next three months and showing a bank statement to prove we were capable of providing for ourselves and not likely to be a burden on the state. We were permitted to enter.

Once inside everyone has been so delightful and friendly. Many have visited California and are excited to share their city with us. The hostel staff gave us recommendations for three days in the city and we knocked out the list in one day!

Molly Malone

First stop was Trinity College. The Irish love their walls and fences. The college was walled off except for one driving path and one pedestrian entrance. Inside the grounds, the green spaces had additional fences with a single gate each. We decided to move on to museums.

I asked the front desk of the National Art gallery for the best way to spend 30 minutes and he kindly directed me to the best wing of the museum.

The Natural history museum was around the corner so we went there next. The giant Irish Deer skeletons were fun to see, but the rest of the museum was crowded with ordinary critter taxidermy. Done with museums.

I love parks! We walked to St Stephens Green and it was quite full of people for 2pm on a Thursday. I should clarify that it was a sunny day and apparently that is so infrequent that everyone takes a break from work to catch the sunshine.

The number one tourist attraction in Ireland is the Guinness Storehouse founded in 1759 with a 9,000 year lease. We had to visit. The exhibit is staged in six floors and shaped like a Guinness glass. It covers brewing, company history, advertising and shipping. The top floor had panoramic city views and a pint to enjoy.

One floor had samples of the latest brew. I was carded in a country where the drinking age is 18. That made me feel young until the next day when someone asked if we were chaperones.

We finished off our sightseeing with Christchurch Cathedral, Dublin castle, and a few other cathedrals and government buildings.

After a 30 minute nap at the hostel we went for a dinner of lamb and Irish stew followed by a drinks at pub across from Temple bar.

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