I had a really nice host family and I really enjoyed my stay in their house. It’s where you learn things about the real Irish life
Dublin 2016 - a year of entertainment!
November 16, 2015
Dublin city is awash with museums, galleries and cultural institutes and what’s more, most of them are free. It’s no wonder that we are aiming for the European capital of culture in 2020 http://dublin2020.ie/. It’s genuinely a great time to come to Dublin at anytime of the year, but to make the most of your time here, knowing what festivals are on will only make your trip even more enjoyable. There is no better place to enjoy a festival atmosphere than Ireland. We’re renowned for our hospitality, great sense of humour and ability to talk the hind legs off a donkey. Below are just the highlights.
Dublin 2016 – Will it be the best one yet?
If you arrive in Dublin in January, you’ll be here when every Irish person is on their journey of self-embetterment to roll in the new year. The most exciting festival in January is the Temple Bar Trad Festival, a festival that has grown dramatically since it started ten years ago and features the cream of the crop of folk artists and traditional Irish musicians.
The highlight of February is undoubtedly the Jameson International Film Festival that has welcomed the likes of Julie Andrews, Colin Firth and many more famous and talented individuals. If you are a film fanatic, February is the time to land in Dublin.
You won’t have to look too far for fun and festivities in March. St. Patrick’s day was gifted to us by our patron saint, St. Patrick himself, and on March the 17th we celebrate all things Irish in typical Irish fashion. Expect parades, patriotism and parties.
Bray Jazz Festival takes place in an idyllic seaside town 40 minutes outside Dublin, best arrived at by DART, the scenic train that trundles to the South. The Bray Jazz Festival is the longest established jazz festival weekend taking place in the greater Dublin area and welcomes visitors on an international level from; Brazil, Italy, Peru, Venezuela, Cuba, Hungary, Czech Republic, Japan and Ukraine.
Sponsored by Bord Bia (the irish food board), Bloom is Ireland’s leading horticultural and food festival which is celebrating its 10th anniversary in 2016. The aim of the festival is to highlight the high standard of farming and food production in Ireland with a range of activities, stalls, lectures, and an entertaining and diverse music tent.
On June 16th, Joycean fans everywhere congregate to celebrate one of the greatest writers of the 20th century. James Joyce set the story for his book Ulysses on the 16th of June, the day he had his first date with his wife Nora. Plagued by health and financial issues for most of his life, Joyce could only be proud of the masses that congregate in his memory, all over Dublin city. Street picnics, cycling tours, lectures, music, readings and much more! Undoubtedly, Bloomsday is one of Dublin’s livelier festivals.
In the height of summer, Dublin city comes alive with a plethora of outdoor events that will suit every possible taste. The RDS Horse Show has been running for decades and has a huge following of regulars that line up to see horse jumping, the puissance, ladies day and live music. In early July the street perfomance festival rolls into town with a variety of acts. Last year festival-goers were entertained by a strong woman, a fire breather, a unicyclist and more!
Dublin Heritage Week is a celebration of all things historical in the country of Ireland. Every museum and gallery or nook and cranny on the island of Ireland will have something to offer the budding historian. Last year’s highlights were tours of the Freemason’s Lodge and nature walks in the Irish countryside.
The standout night of the year for many a culture vulture is Culture Night. This entirely free event takes hold of irish cities once a year and every cultural institute welcomes citizens and visitors through their doors for free events, workshops, lectures, filmings, galleries and more. Make sure you plan your night, as the endless list of possibilities can often lead to aimless walking.
Bram Stoker is one of Ireland’s most esteemed English language writers, famous for his novel Dracula, a character that has undergone more adaptations than potential stakings. Expect wacky vampire costumes, blood curdling exhibitions and dastardly performances. Fangtastic time to fly into Dublin!
The Dublin Book Festival was started to encourage Irish writers and emerging talent. The beautiful Smock Alley Theatre acts as the festival’s hub and plays host to about 100 authors. Time to get that novel written.
Starting in November and carrying into December, Dublin is sparkling with Christmas light ceremonies, sumptious food fairs and curious markets. Henry, O’Connell and Grafton Street all have their own lighting ceremonies and the Docklands welcomes a German style Christmas Market with gluhwein, bratwurst and spiced gingerbreads.
Spot the Idiom
Cream of the crop: The best of all.
Talk the hind legs off a donkey: The ability to talk easily with anyone.