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Ireland: Destination Guides

Student Guides: Dublin

Looking to study abroad in the beautiful city of Dublin but don’t know where to start? Get to grips with Ireland’s capital city with our guide to all things Dublin.

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Whether it’s the rich history of the city, the vibrant culture that pervades the streets, or the contagious charm that the locals exude, it’s not hard to fall in love with life in Dublin. As the largest city in Ireland, with a population of approximately 1.4 million people, Dublin is one of Europe’s most student-orientated cities. If you’re looking to study, to work or a combination of the two, it’s time to discover what makes Dublin such a special place.

 

Where can I study in Dublin?

To say that Dublin is a student-friendly city would be an understatement. When deciding where to study, you’ll be spoilt for choice. Universities in Dublin offer not only a diverse range of courses and subject areas, but also a range of different experiences. Some of the most prominent universities include:

 

 

As an international student Dublin’s mix of tertiary institutions will allow you to carve out a unique university experience. This is so important, as it will allow you the freedom to pursue your studies and the eventual career you desire.

 

Things for students to do in Dublin

 

No matter what you're into, Dublin will have something for you to enjoy. Being the student hub that it is, Dublin's array of history, scenery, entertainment, and leisure, provide a plethora of options. First and foremost, you'd be missing out on the essence of Dublin if you didn’t check out the Guinness Storehouse. With its 9,000-year lease, meaning it's not going anywhere anytime soon, you can take take part in their unique tasting experience, book a guided tour, or simply relax in their Gravity Bar with a 360-degree view over Dublin. If you're after a relaxing escape amongst some flora and fauna, take a stroll through Dublin's Botanic Gardens or Phoenix Park to refresh the mind. When it comes to leisure, Dublin offers a range of cafes, restaurants, pubs and eateries to indulge those taste buds, with the Dublin Flea Market happening on the last Sunday of each month at the Digital Hub.

 

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Being around as long as it has, Dublin is a city steeped in history. The National Museum of Ireland, and the Kilmainham Gaol, will give you a taste of what's brought Dublin to where it is today. The 18th-century old Dublin Castle plays home to presidential inaugurations, and if you want to check out the most famous medieval script still in existence, pop in to the beautiful Trinity College Library, in the heart of Dublin, where you'll find the 9th-century Book of Kells, which is over 1,200 years old.

 

What are the best places to eat in Dublin?

 

Dublin is fortunate enough to be a city blessed by the influence of a variety of different cultures. You won’t be short of options for food or drink. Dublin is home to an eclectic mix of bars, cafes, restaurants and eateries that will satisfy your hunger. If you’re looking for a nice cafe to catch up with a friend, do some work, or just get that coffee fix, either Clement & Pekoe or Kaph are regarded as two of Dublin’s finest. Fancy a pub? Check out Grogan’s Pub or JP Mooneys for an authentic Irish pub experience. You may also want to make a trip to the Irish Whiskey Museum.

 

When it comes to restaurants, Dublin has enough great spots to suit any price range. If you’re looking to spend a little bit extra, maybe to impress, then check out Chapter One, or the more-affordable Brother Hubbard, both boasting quality food that celebrate Irish ingredients. A meal at The Fumbally will provide you with a nice time surrounded by some vintage, industrial decor. However, we know that whether you’re a student, or not, the cheap eats are where it’s at. Bunsen will satisfy that burger craving that so many often get, whereas 147 Deli will give you a healthier alternative of freshly-made sandwiches and salads. Don’t forget the pizza. Take a look at the Dublin Pizza Company for a slice of Naples in the heart of Ireland.

 

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What is there to see in Dublin?

When you’re looking for a break from all that university work, Dublin offers plenty to check out when it comes to the outdoors. Dublin lies in a country so well known for its hills, valleys, and coastlines, simply hoping on a DART train will take you out to see the landscape in no time. If views of the ocean are what you’re after, visiting the Howth Summit, or doing the famous Howth Cliff Walk, are a must. If you fancy getting out of Dublin for the day, escape on the train to Cork or Galway, to explore more of Ireland’s beauty away from the big city. Being a resident of Dublin means you have the luxury of great green spaces, the backdrop of interesting and historic architecture and the views of a coastal city.

 

What's the accomodation in Dublin like?

Like many cities across the globe, you’re going to get quite a range of different prices for accommodation on offer in Dublin. As is typically the case, the more central you are, the more expensive your cost of living will be. In your first year or two as a student, living in student accommodation is the best way to meet new people, live somewhere close to your university, and also feel a sense of community. If you’re looking for a room, or a shared flat, areas one and two of Dublin’s 24 postal districts are a good place to start, with Dublin One typically being slightly cheaper but Dublin Two being more modern. Dublin three and six are both suitable, cheaper options if you don’t want to be too central, with both having the convenience of the LUAS train network to take you to and from the city whenever you need. Dublin seven has also recently seen new developments with affordable accommodation available, such as in Smithfield. If you need help with finding a place, or room, to rent, check out Numbeo, Daft.ie, Uninest or College Cribs.

 

What's the transport in Dublin like?

You won’t have too much trouble navigating your way around Dublin. With it not being the most ‘spread out’ of cities, getting to most places on foot isn’t too much trouble. If walking isn't your thing, or you want to head a bit further around the city, you’re fortunate to have access to Dublin’s bus and train networks. The LUAS train network will get you anywhere from the city to the suburbs, whereas the DART line will connect you to the city, the suburbs and further out towards the coast.

 

 

Other than on foot, the most convenient means of travelling through the city would have to be via bus. Make sure that you invest in a LeapCard in order to get on any bus service, otherwise it’s cash-only if you want to purchase a ticket when you get on. Dublin’s also a popular city for those who wish to ride a bike, especially on nicer days. It plays home to 120km of cycle lanes, making it one of Europe’s most bike-friendly cities. If you're in a hurry catching a taxi is a good option too, where you’ll no doubt find an Irish local keen to chat, joke, and fill you with stories about the city.

If you’re keen to hear first-hand what it’s like to be a student in Dublin, why not take a look at international student Yash’s account of his experience. Or you could kickstart your Ireland study abroad adventure by searching institutions and courses

 

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