Countdown to St. Paddy's Day - Day One
Dublin is a great city with a rich history that dates back centuries. If you are a newbie or timid traveler, yet eager to immerse yourself in a European city, we suggest you begin with Dublin. It offers that down-home southern-type hospitality we love dropped into a completely different culture. Dublin is not too massive, so pretty easy to navigate. Should you need directions, everyone speaks English with a fun accent. We have visited several times and always find new things to do and areas to explore.
We checked out the beautiful Trinity College area on our first day. You will need tickets to visit The Book of Kells Exhibition. The 18th century Old Library houses what some say is Ireland's greatest cultural treasure and the world's most famous medieval manuscript - a 9th century, richly decorated book of the four Gospels of the life of Jesus Christ. After being awed by things so well preserved for 1,200 years, we grabbed a quick much-needed nap at The Morgan Hotel.
The Morgan welcomed us with Mojitos, which besides having a bundle of green leaves in the glass, didn't strike us as the traditional Irish cocktail. They were not quite like the Mojitos we've enjoyed in Cuba, but they did go down easily as we made our plan of attack for the evening.
We chose the trendy Morgan Hotel because it is located in the very lively Temple Bar area, so we set foot to hit the pubs and learn about Irish Whiskey.
We highly recommend the Fade Street Social for dinner! Make reservations ahead of your trip as it is a very popular spot. We tried the Bone Marrow starter, Woodfired Flatbreads (we loved the pumpkin, pork and chestnut and the lamb, fennel and olive ones) and the Beef Braised in Guinness, and of course, the potatoes done every which way. While you are at Fade Street Social be sure to enjoy a whiskey and the views from their rooftop bar.
We finished the night dancing and singing at Gogarty's. This lively spot kept the crowd going for hours playing traditional Irish tunes (or just 'trad tunes' if you want to be a local).