1. The music scene/venues
Dublin is home to some of Ireland’s finest and most renowned music venues. Whether your music tastes lie in electronica, traditional or folk music, there is a venue in Dublin that caters to your needs. What makes Dublin’s music venues truly special is that they are not limited or restricted to hosting one genre of music – you will often find a traditional Irish band playing downstairs in Whelan’s while an electronica artist performs upstairs. The city’s music scene is really thriving at the moment and there are live gigs on most nights of the week. Popular local venues include The Grand Social, Workman’s and Bello Bar. The Dublin music scene is very encouraging of new original music, with numerous events hosted across the city every week to promote it. Doyle’s hosts a popular event called The Ruby Sessions every Tuesday, where three up-and-coming Irish acts are invited to perform an acoustic set. We-Bloom is a new music event held in Workman’s every Monday, where rising artists and bands can perform full sets. No matter where your music preferences lie, there is a venue in Dublin to suit them.
2. Abundant nightlife
All it takes is a stroll through Dublin City Centre on a Saturday evening to see that the city really comes to life at night time. The numbers of people going out at the weekend in Dublin now are reminiscent of the Celtic Tiger era, with bars and pubs truly dubh le daoine every Friday and Saturday night. The city has a great selection of clubs and bars to suit most tastes and preferences and, given Dublin’s small size, many of these are in walking distance of each other.
Word of advice: at all costs stay away from Harcourt Street/Coppers after 10pm. There is more to life, trust me.
3. Cultural hotspot
Given its small size, Dublin’s vast and comprehensive list of museums and galleries is impressive. Most of these are free of charge for students if you present a student ID. The Hugh Lane Gallery, The Science Gallery and The National History Museum are amongst the most popular and all boast impressive and interesting exhibitions and collections. The National Gallery of Ireland is currently exhibiting a collection of paintings by Vermeer, while the RHA has just come to the end of an exhibition of Daphne Wright’s sculptures. Ireland is home to four Nobel prize winners for literature, and the Dublin Writer’s Museum features works of all four laureates. There are few Irish cities better than Dublin to immerse oneself in culture and art.
4. The restaurants
Dublin has a lot of very student friendly restaurants and cafés (see my 5 top student lunch deals HERE), and many of these offer competitive lunch deals and student discounts. Burger fans are spoiled with a plethora of burger joints, ranging from Jo’ Burger to Bunsen, while burrito fans can enjoy lunch deals from Boojum and Burritos & Blues. As for student friendly priced desserts, a doughnut craze engulfed Dublin last year when Rolling Donuts, Aungier Dangers and Offbeats started opening up at almost every corner of the city. Aungier Danger’s ‘Assaulted Caramel’ flavour is TO DIE FOR. Succumb and indulge.
Dublin is a relatively small city which makes getting from place to place very easy. The city offers many efficient transportation systems. Dublin Bus (when they’re not striking) operate bus services all over the city, while DART trains operate services out of the city (the view from the train on the way to Greystones is BREATHTAKING). New Luas tram lines have been under construction for the bones of three years now and are due to be up and running by the end of 2017. Once this is completed, the city will be even more accessible to those living in areas such as Cabra and Phibsborough (both of which are popular student living areas). If you want to work off the aforementioned doughnuts, Dublin’s small scale means that the city is also very accessible by foot/bike.