DUBLIN ON A BUDGET: 4 Days for $1000

First published March 2018

Where: Dublin, Ireland
When: March
How Many Nights: 4
Cost: $1000

• • • • • • Planning a Trip on a Budget • • • • • •

My friends from high school wanted to plan a group trip to celebrate all of us turning 50 and we had to work within a budget: we needed to make the trip happen for $1000/each. First I tackled flights. We were somewhat flexible (and traveling off-season) so I found a $400 flight to Dublin direct on Aer Lingus. The flight is about 6.5 hours. Next I worked on finding affordable places to stay.

• • • • • • Where to Stay • • • • • •

The Drury Court Hotel had great reviews on TripAdvisor and was affordable. The location rocks and we could get a room with one double bed and one twin for $300 U.S. dollars a night. We had some rooms with three people in a room and some with 2. The staff was extremely polite and helpful. FYI: They also offer apartments.  I will definitely stay there again.

Tip: If money is no issue: Stay at The Westbury. We did the high tea there which I highly recommend. One of the nicest I have ever experienced.

• • • • • • What to See • • • • • •

Day Trip to Belfast
We took a day trip to the Giants Causeway, Belfast, and Antrim. We saw a few of the Game of Thrones’ castles and filming areas. That day trip was around $86 dollars and was so worth it. They don’t supply food so bring some snacks or be prepared to buy them at the rest stop. They do stop for lunch at the Giants Causeway. We loved the Nook pub for our lunch. Stop in to see the hotel as well. And read how the Causeway was formed here.
Dublin Literary Pub Tour
Our next tour was the Literary pub tour. Due to the blizzard, we were only able to stay at the Duke pub for the show. (Usually you visit four pubs.) We popped into the pubs we missed two nights later and loved it. Nothing like drinking while a dose of history. You can’t beat it: )


• • • • • • Where to Dine (& Drink) • • • • • •
Here are some of the places where we loved to dine and have a pint (or two).
These are all walking distance from the hotel and Grafton Street:

Hairy Lemon
Rated best pub food in Dublin and the staff are lovely-across the street from the hotel. We had breakfast and lunch there. I recommend the Guinness and Beef pie.

Metro Cafe
This is around the corner from the hotel. Owners Niles and his wife are friendly and hysterical. The entire staff was lovely. I had breakfast and lunch there. The soup was great.

The Old Stand
Rich with a history dating back 300 years, the Old Stand is pub has a warm, chatty, fun vibe. Definitely try the Guinness Stew!

A victorian pub dating back to 1885 that has notchanged. Many poets frequented this pub. Very cozy and a bunch of tv’s to watch any game you like.

The Duke
An old pub dating back to 1822, where many poets lifted a pint. The staff was awesome!

The Dawson Lounge
This bar is the smallest bar in Dublin and the third smallest in all of Ireland. You need to push on the door and go down the stairs. It looks closed but it isn’t. A really cute place to stop for a pint. Locals frequent here as well.

Also, take a stroll in the Temple Bar area. We stopped in a place that had live music.
During sporting events, it is similar to New Orleans during Mardi Gras.

This is a traditional Irish pub dating back to 1803. It is a typical Victorian style that has not been changed. This is where the locals hang out. Buy your t-shirts here.

Celtic Nights Traditional Irish Dance Show
Definitely book ahead and ask for a table in front of the stage. This is totally worth it. Take an 8:30 pm seating and enjoy the show. We all loved the food as well. I had the spicy curry vegetarian chili while my friends loved the salmon.

One place I wanted to go but it was closed was The Brazen Head. It is the oldest pub in Dublin dating back to 1198!!! I sent a friend there the week before and they loved it. Make sure you walk through it because there are many rooms.

Who knew Dublin would have their first blizzard in 36 years while we were there!? It just added to the fun!

If you are looking for a nightclub then stop in 37 Dawson Street or Dakota Bar. We only had lunch at Dakota’s but they were very accommodating for a large crowd. Our bartender and waitress were great. 37 Dawson Street had a young crowd with the music pumping and DJs. We were a bit old for the place but still had fun. The manager was very accommodating and not hard on the eyes either.

If you are looking for things to do these were on my list but closed due to the blizzard…

• • • • • • More to See • • • • • •
• The Little Museum
Great with kids. They have a room devoted to U2 (photo below).

• Trinity College/Book of Kells

• St. Patrick’s Cathedral

• Jeanie Johnston tall ship

• Duck tour
It’s a 75-minute duck tour of Dublin where you’ll ride in a boat see the big sites in Dublin like St Patrick’s Cathedral and Dublin Castle all while wearing a Viking hat.

• Guinness Storehouse.

*Tp for Guinness Storehouse: Don’t use your ticket for a free drink until you get to the rooftop bar. They only take the tickets up there. You can’t use cash to buy a drink. So if you are drinking on one of the other floors make sure you use your cash.

The Bottom Line: It was $1000
For $1000, we had a flight to Dublin, four nights in a hotel and tickets for the day tour and Guinness Storehouse. I normally stay in VRBO’s but luckily I couldn’t find one I liked. The entire city shut down with no cars or buses running. If we weren’t in town it would have been a disaster. I can’t wait to go back. Dublin is such a fun city!!! I was even able to squeeze in a visit with the Irish cousins.


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Author: amynidds

Amy loves to help you find the best deals out there or something she thinks you just have to have! Content and Finds Editor


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