Planning your trip to Dublin? Use our guide for the best info on getting around the city, right from the airport to the best use of public transport.
Most people fly into Dublin International Airport (01 814 1111) which is Ireland’s busiest airport and also in the top ten busiest in Europe serving up to 80,000 passengers per day. There are two terminals and two runways. Aer Lingus is the national carrier, and Ryan Air is the local budget airline with links to most of Europe.
The airport lies approximately 10km north of the city center, and easily reached by public transport. There are more than 1,000 buses and coaches daily to and from Dublin and elsewhere in Ireland, including Belfast.
Aircoach (01 8447118) runs to and from city centre hotels 24 hours daily. It has free wifi on board. Tickets can be bought on board and cost €7 single or €12 return, journey time 35 mins. A pre-purchased Dublin Pass (a discounted sightseeing ticket) includes a free journey from the airport to the city centre.
Airlink (01 8734222), run by Dublin Bus, runs its 747 service connecting the airport to the O2 Dublin, Central Bus Station and Connolly Rail Station, among others. Tickets cost €6 or €10 return, and can be bought at bus and rail information desks, and from vending machines at the bus departure points. Although the journeys usually take around 35 minutes, bear in mind that during rush hour (3pm-7pm) journey times can be up to one hour.
Taxis are available in the forecourts outside Terminals 1 and 2. Every taxi is metred and will hand you a receipt on reaching your destination. A taxi between the airport and city centre costs approximately €25.
Even though there are so many flights into Dublin, both international carriers and budget airlines, the sea crossing from Ireland to the UK is still going strong. Dublin Port is at the mouth of the River Liffey. The shortest route is with Irish Ferries (01 818 300 400 from Ire; 08717 300 400 from Eng) between Dublin and Holyhead, in Wales. Journeys take 2 hours (fast ferry) or 3.5 hours (slow ferries). Stena Line (01 204 7777 from Ire, 08447 707070 from Eng) have services also between Dublin and Holyhead, taking 3.5 hours.
Bus number 53 has a regular service between the port and the city centre.
The centre of Dublin is easy enough to negotiate on foot but if you get tired, local buses run by Dublin Bus (01 873 4222) are frequent and cheap. Fares (exact change only to the driver) start at €1 for a short hop within the city.
Dublin now has a bus corridor with a city centre zone for public transport only that operates during rush hours.
An excellent bus map of the city is available free from Dublin Bus or the tourist office.
Dublin Bus Tours operate the hop-on, hop-off Dublin City Tour, which starts on O’Connell Bridge. The complete tour takes over an hour and visits 16 sights around the city. A ticket (adult €22) includes discounts at each of the sights and is valid for a day.
The electric tram system, the Luas (www.luas.ie) is designed for commuters, but the red line, from Connolly Street through the shopping streets north of the river and then along the quays to Phoenix Park and Heuston station, can be useful. Tickets are available at each stop; a single ticket is valid for only 90 mins, a return for the whole day. Single fares are between €1.80 and €3, depending on the zones.
The all-zone combi ticket (also known as Leap card) for bus, DART and Luas costs €10 for 1 day.
The sleek DART (Dublin Area Rapid Transit), (01 850 366222) is a suburban rail service that links the coastal suburbs with the city centre. It is useful for travel between the south and north of the city and for transport to some suburban areas, such as Howth, Dun Laoghaire and Bray. It’s a great way to get to the coastal regions on a day trip.