This past week has been such a whirlwind of emotions as I’m getting over jet lag and becoming more comfortable with the fact that I’m really in Ireland for the next two months. I’m meeting so many new people through orientation and within our accommodations at the UCD residence areas.
As a way to get to know our roommates better and to dive into exploring the Dublin area, a group of IES interns decided to spend a day in Dún Laoghaire. This small suburb is located southeast of Dublin city center and is alongside the sea.
Strolling down the pier
The trip to Dún Laoghaire was about a 40 minute bus ride on the Dublin bus from our accommodations. We started out our mini adventure by walking down the pier. We got so lucky with the weather—no rain in sight! It was perfect weather for me to snatch some great photos. Checking off a bucket list item and cooling down from a brisk walk down to the pier, we grabbed a sweet treat at a Teddy’s Ice Cream truck alongside the docks.
The pier was full of people soaking up the sunshine. A group of boys and their families cheered as they made multiple trips jumping off the docks into the water, artists sold their latest pieces alongside the pier walls, and couples strolled down the pier walking their dogs. We even caught some of the furry ones making new friends!
After passing several anchored sailboats along the pier, we reached the end of the pier and came upon a man playing his banjo. The banjo player set the romantic tone with music giving Latin vibes as we overlooked the Irish Sea. It was one of those moments you don’t want to leave. Everyone around you is in such a great mood and the views are extraordinary. But, we decided to head back into town so that we could catch yet another destination in Dún Laoghaire.
Grabbing lunch at the market
After building up an appetite, we walked over to The People’s Park Market, which occurs every Sunday from 11:00am to 4:00pm. The park was buzzing with excitement, as children played and groups of people sat in the shade enjoying a local treat. A fiery pink-haired woman played the flute and mastered a box of dancing puppets while several young girls danced around here. The market had a very young vibe to it, and the food definitely did not disappoint.
Craving some Thai food? How about freshly fried doughnuts? Can’t go wrong with fresh fruit and a hot-off-the-grill peppered sausage. You could find a bit of everything at the market, and it was very vegetarian and vegan friendly. I ended up grabbing a plate of Yakisoba (Japanese fried noodles) from Sasuke Japanese Restaurant’s stand and also purchased two packages of locally-made Early Grey and chamomile tea from the Kingfisher Tea stand. Talk about a filling and affordable meal that satisfied this vegetarian!
After lunch we walked around the town and acted like typical tourists trying to find the nearest bus stop that would take us home. Overall, I couldn’t have found a better way to spend my first weekend in Ireland. The town was full of things to see and do, and it was a really easy way to take a very short trip and feel like you are in a completely different side of the country. I got to learn a bit more about my peers and the Irish culture in general. I definitely recommend taking some time to explore the different suburbs of Dublin, especially if you’re on a tight budget!
Next week I begin my summer internship and I cannot wait to meet my new colleagues.
Tá mé ag súil go mór é!
(I look forward to it!)
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<p>A non-traditional marketing and psychology student who has a passion for exploring different cultures around the world. I work in marketing and consumer behavior by day, and am a foodie and music lover by night. I hope to someday say that I have written blogs about my experiences from every continent!</p>