The city centre, especially the tourist bit, is incredibly compact, so as long as you’ve picked a central hotel you should be fine. Almost all of the main tourist sites, nightlife area, and shopping districts are in close proximity, so put your heels in your bag and start walking.
During the day, you shouldn’t need to get many buses – though if you do, fares start from €1.15. You’ll need to carry the exact amount – any change has to be collected from the Dublin bus office. If you’re heading home later at night and can’t face the short walk back to the hotel, there are night buses running till 2:30 during the week, and 4:30 on Fridays and Saturdays.
It’ll be difficult to get a taxi after pubs close at the weekend, so if you think there’s a chance you’ll be a bit wobbly on your feet and looking for a lift, book in advance. After 10pm, the flat rate in taxis is €4.45, and €1.35 for every km after.
Abbey Theatre – Ireland’s national theatre; if you’re hoping to get some traditional Irish flavour by seeing some Irish dancing or watching a bit of Beckett, Wilde, Shaw or Sheridan, this is the place.
Olympia Theatre – don’t judge the Olympia on the fact that Jedward has starred in its Christmas pantomime the last two years – or even on the fact that they’ve got a Christmas pantomime. Usually, the Olympia sticks to slightly indie, emo gigs and concerts, with artists like Haim, All Time Low, Foals, Fall Out Boy, and Panic! At the Disco… as well as the less edgy Paul Potts, Michael Bolton, and Shane (that guy from Westlife).
Vicar Street – named Irish Music Venue of the year for several consecutive years, Vicar Street also does an excellent line in stand up, with Russell Howard, Paul Merton, Caitlin Moran, and Alan Davies appearing.
The o2 – one of the busiest arenas in the world (alongside its London counterpart), the O2 has seen sell-out shows from Beyonce, Muse, Lady Gaga, Glee, Taylor Swift, Alan Carr, and Michael McIntyre, and super stars like Ed Sheeran, Miley Cyrus, Ellie Goulding, Jason Derulo, McBusted, and Beyonce (again) are set to appear again.
Shopping: Grafton Street. High street staples like Next, River Island, and American Apparel next to department store giants like Brown Thomas carrying lines from Alexander McQueen, Balenciaga, Chanel, Christian Louboutin, Diane Von Fustenberg, Dior… the list goes on and on.
Culture: it’s a tough one, with cathedrals, castles and universities covering Dublin, but we’ll go with Temple Bar for the mix of museums, galleries, theatres, shops and pubs – there’s everything you need on one street!
Air: one of the largest walled city parks in Europe, Pheonix Park is the perfect place to relax of a Sunday before you all head home. It’s got herds of wild deer, Dublin Zoo, forts, gardens, and the house of the president of Ireland inside.
Dublin has lots of little statues commemorating things like famous residents and... uh, shopping. If you see any on your travels round the city, take the time to snap a quick picture of:
Temple Bar TradFest – January
International Film Festival – February
Dine in Dublin Restaurant Week – February
St Patrick’s Day Festival – March
The Finegal Film Festival – May
Dublin Fringe Festival – September
Dublin Fashion Festival – September
Dublin Theatre Festival – September