€539 - €570
Those who only have 1 day in Dublin
Suggested start time:
- Your own personally guided tour of the National Museum (or the Old Library of Trinity College, which hosts the Book of Kells)
- Visit a Pub(s)
- Visit a studio of a local artist/craftsperson
- Visit National Gallery
- Oscar Wilde Statue
- Discover every important site in Dublin city centre
- Learn about over 2,000 years of Ireland’s history & culture
- Feel the character and spirit of the Irish people
- Spend the day with a charming Irish person
What to expect on this tour
- Customizable – the guide will change the itinerary to go where you want to go
- Pacing – we’ll take a break (coffee/beer/meal) every 80-90mins
- Exercise – Dublin is a very compact city so we will NOT be covering vast distances
- Communication forms – the guide will use a display folder full of photos, maps, etc. and might also sing or act
- Variety – the right mix of fun, culture and history to suit you!
- Private – no one else will be joining your group, ever.
- Professional, well-travelled, clear-spoken and personable Irish tour guide who is specialised in giving private tours and therefore is able to talk AND listen
- Lifetime memories – create wonderful and lasting memories
Do you enjoy Food, Pub, Museums, Culture tours and learning how the locals live?
This tour combines them all into your perfect day in Dublin.
Do you enjoy Food Tours, Beer/Pub Tours, Museums, Culture and learning how the locals live? This tour comprises elements from all those tours to give you the most varied, comprehensive and enjoyable tour of Dublin possible! After 10yrs tour guiding private tours, and over 500 5-star reviews, Garvan Rushe has designed a tour to deliver an outstanding full day in Dublin.
By the end of the tour, you’ll have visited all the essential attractions, experiencing only the best of the National Gallery and National Museum, eaten lunch where the locals go, shopped for Irish artisanal foods & cheeses, paired them with Irish beer/whiskey in a locals’ pub, visited a jeweller (or similar artist) and learned the methods & inspiration behind their art.
As if that wasn’t enough, you will have also gained not only an understanding but a powerful feeling for Irish history & culture. Most importantly of all, you’ll have connected with an authentic Irish guide who wants to share a fantastically memorable & personal day with you.
A salute to Oscar Wilde
We’ll start with a salute to our of Ireland’s most famous and, in his time, controversial sons – Oscar Wilde.
National Gallery of Ireland
Next, we’ll pop into the National Gallery to learn about Irish history through some fascinating works of art: the Marriage of Strongbow and Aoife which signalled the end of the old Gaelic order in Ireland; beautiful stained glass windows and a hugely symbolic painting about the Irish Civil War.
National Museum of History and Archaeology
Then we’ll go to arguably Dublin’s best museum – the National Museum of Archaeology & History. We’ll visit The Treasury which hosts the greatest treasures that Ireland has produced including the Tara Brooch and Ardagh Chalice.
A crucially important site for the history of Ireland, especially since 1204 when the castle was built. From 1204 until 1922, it was the centre of British rule in Ireland and had therefore a reputation of oppression and violence. Since the keys of the castle were metaphorically AND literally handed off to the Irish in 1922, it has experienced a complete change in the minds of the Irish people. The Irish President is inaugurated here, dignitaries are welcomed and referendum results are announced here, making it into a place where, although history is still being made, the changes are positive and are creating a better Ireland.
We will not be venturing inside, but thankfully we are free to explore the grounds – the lower and upper courtyards and the Dubh Linn gardens – which is fully satisfying.
Although a wooden church was built here in ca. 1030, and there was likely a pagan shrine before that, Christchurch as a stone structure began in the 1180s and has been restored and changed numerous times since. The neo-gothic architecture makes Christchurch, arguably, Dublin’s most beautiful complex. The vast crypt underneath the cathedral deserves particular attention for its size, interesting curious and the fact that it hosted a pub, distillery and… brothel (!) in the 18th century.
Started in 1592 as a university only for Protestants, Trinity remained an institution of resentment for Ireland’s Catholic majority up until at least 1970. Throughout the centuries, this fine university nurtured such aspiring students as Oscar Wilde, Jonathan Swift, Bram Stoker and Samuel Beckett, the greatest playwright of the 20th century.
A remarkable building that really gives you a sense of how wealthy Dublin was at the end of the 18th century. Often there are events taking place inside, which would preclude us from entering, but if there are not we can explore the fantastic frescoes and gold-leaf design on the rotunda.
The Ha’Penny Bridge
Built in 1816, the beautiful white cast iron bridge straddles the River Liffey. It serves as the gateway to the charming Temple Bar quarter with its narrow cobbled streets. We’ll cross over it to look up and down the river. On the north side, there’s a great opportunity for a photo.
General Post Office (G.P.O.) (O’Connell St)
It was outside this impressive building on Easter Monday when Padraig Pearse read the Declaration of Irish Independence and he, together with his 1600 comrades, led a rebellion that shook an empire. The most under-rated site in Dublin for tourists, the GPO retains all its historical potency for Dubliners and Irish people, but most tourists never learn why this should be on their top 5 list of sites to visit.
We’ll be able to stand at what was the front entrance where the proclamation was read and, possibly, venture inside to admire it’s reconstructed antique interior as well as soak up the significance of what happened on this spot and what it means to Irish people today.
Daniel O’Connell Statue (O’Connell St)
Daniel O’Connell was arguably the first man to prove to the masses that civil disobedience and peaceful resistance could be effective. A huge hero for Irish people, having secured Catholic Emancipation, he’s nick-named ‘The Liberator’ and the main street of our capital city is justifiably named after him.
We’ll explore the intricate notes of symbolism on this brilliant monument.
Old Parliament Building
Dublin was the 2nd city of the British Empire in the 18th century, and we have the subtle patriotism of the Irish-born politicians of the institution to thank. Today, Dublin’s architectural landscape is ornamented by an abundance of buildings from this period, making it look much older than Paris and London. What is now known as ‘The Bank of Ireland building’ was grand enough to serve as the architectural inspiration for the monumental British Museum in London.
This building is located in College Green, which could be regarded as the centre of the city. The entrance to Trinity College is adjacent as is famous Grafton Street.
Leinster House – Dáil Eireann – Irish Parliament
What was once the town house of the Fitzgerald family from the 1740s has, since 1922, hosted the Irish Parliament (Dáil Eireann). Much like the Old Parliament building, this parliament building also became an architectural inspiration. Its facade, as well as the floor plan for its 1st and 2nd floors, were used as blueprints for the design of the White House.
Naturally, we’ll only be able to view it from the gate, which, thankfully, gives us a more-or-less unobstructed view of the front facade.
Dublin’s heyday was from 1729 to 1800, which roughly coincides with the reign of Kings George I to III. In the subsequent 19th century, however, money and influence abandoned Dublin. As a result, instead of constructing new buildings, the cash-strapped populace resorted to maintaining many of the fine Georgian buildings. Thanks to these circumstances, Dublin today is architecturally older than London.
Georgian architecture is characterised by symmetry, elegance and restraint (in contrast to Baroque or Rococo). The state buildings normally have neoclassical elements such as columns whereas the residential buildings have red-brick facades with famously colourful doors to distinguish them from each other.
Don’t let the brands and blatant consumerism fool you, Grafton still has its charm. In fact, Grafton street is one of the last bastions of old Dublin left. Admire the flower ladies, enjoy the buskers (street musicians) as you head towards Bewleys Café, Ireland’s oldest and biggest café, built in 1927.
Saint Stephen’s Green
Gifted to the city in 1880 by a member of the Guinness family, Stephen’s Green remains much-appreciated by Dubliners today – it’s probably their favourite piece of the city. We’ll stroll through the lush verdure along the curved Victorian walkways and keep our eyes peeled for that most-rare of animals – an Irish person sunbathing!
Wolfe Tone Statue (St. Stephen’s Green)
Wolfe Tone led the rebel of 1798, which sought to free Ireland of its political, cultural and martial chains to Britain as well as introduce equal rights for Catholics, Protestants and Dissenters. Although the rebellion failed, it, and he, would become the inspiration for generations of Irish men and women to stand up against oppression, to this very day.
Find out how it came into existence and discuss the potential for it to dissolve and result in a united Ireland. We’ll be chatting about this when we’re inside siting down during one of our breaks.
The Irish Language
If the English language is a language of prose, then the Irish language is a language of poetry. An incredibly fascinating language – you’ll learn how to say ‘cheers’ in Irish. And hopefully get to properly practice it too, should we stop by a pub. Regardless, we’ll be chatting about this when we’re inside sitting down during one of our breaks.
A pint in conclusion of our day
To celebrate our successful exploration of Dublin, we’ll have a pint in a local pub. We’ll actually pair our cheese with some quality Irish beers.
- Tip or gratuity
- Entry or admission fee
- Food & drinks
- Site entry:
- The Book of Kells exhibition will be closed for 3 years for renovations. Please check their website for an update on the dates affected
- The National Museum of History and Archaeology is open from 1-5pm on Sundays and Mondays. Otherwise, 10am-5pm.
- COVID 19 – We abide by current governmental safety guidelines. We suggest you read about Ireland’s current COVID updates on the Citizens Information website.
- Accessible for those with limited mobility, limited eyesight, wheelchairs, stroller/pram
- Make sure to bring comfortable walking shoes
- Weather – Check the weather before the tour to determine if you’ll need a lightweight raincoat or not
- Further details available once you click into our booking engine linked by a button called ‘Check availability’ or ‘Book’
Complementary tour – If you book this tour, we recommend booking driving tours outside of the city
- Site entry:
- 15+ days before : Free postponement or 80% refund (we retain 20% to cover admin costs)
- 14-8 days before : 50% refund
- 7-0 days before : 0% refund
- All cancellations must be discussed via email or phone. Booking fees are non-refundable. For more info, see our T&Cs
“They may forget what you said…but they will never forget how you made them feel.”
Carl W. Buehner
Over 10,000 happy customers
Don’t just take our word for it. Read our reviews below.
“Two of us did a full day tour with Garvan and really had a great time. Very informative but not pedantic, adjusted to our pace, ideas and wishes. You really got a great sense of the more remote historical connections of what you are seeing as well as what is happening in Dublin more recently. He really explained why what you were seeing was important. He picked a great non-touristy spot for lunch and we later we stopped in a pub and learned the “right” way to drink a pint of Guinness! (I’d been doing it wrong all week – but practice makes perfect!) Couldn’t have a better guide!”
Frederick from Chicago – Jul ‘16
Ended up making a friend
“We met up with Garvan for a day tour and ended up making a friend. Garvan is great at not only imparting the information of the time and place but also the feelings. We came with many misconceptions and half formed ideas of Ireland as a result of Hollywood and Garvan helped us understand the people and times as they truly happened. We met at Trinity College and spent the day walking Dublin. We saw so many sites; the National Museum of History & Archaeology, Stephen’s Green, Dawson St, Grafton St., Trinity College, O’Connell St., Temple Bar, Dublin Castle, St. Patrick’s Cathedral! I learned how to drink a Guinness in a local pub!
Money well spent
Garvan gently dispelled the misconceptions we had about the politics in Dublin. He also told us about the modern Ireland and the evolution of the Celtic Tiger economy. We enjoyed just talking so much we spent the first hour sitting on the bench outside Trinity College without going anywhere. He has the ability to engage and enthrall with his telling of history; coloring of the events with the basis of the time they occurred and relating them to us in a way we could understand and empathize with. Coming from a banker let me just say that it was money well spent to have Garvan as our guide.”
Mike from Carrollton, Texas – Sep ‘15
Highlight of our stay
“Two days with Garvan was the highlight of our stops in Ireland. We had a two-day stop on our cruise and spent an amazing time with an articulate, charming, bright and enthusiastic guide who sang, recited poetry, told stories and filled us with love for Ireland. All that we had suggested, he delivered. Don’t miss an opportunity to share Ireland with Garvan”
Betty from Calgary, Canada – Sep ‘15
“Garvan spent a full day with my family of 5 including two teenage daughters. We emphasized that we only had a day to get a taste of Dublin and Garvan didn’t disappoint. He is passionate about Irish history; ancient and recent and will give you a great overview as you pass through all the important corresponding sites in Dublin. He is entertaining and eloquent and thoroughly enjoys sharing the city and culture. By the end of the day he even had me pronouncing Celtic correctly. I highly recommend him.”
Joe from Greenwich, Connecticut – Aug ‘18
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