Explore The Area Around Dublin Airport By Car
Most visitors to Dublin arrive in the city via Dublin Airport. It is an international travel hub, with flights arriving from all over the world. This means that there is a good network of public transport available to take you into Dublin city centre. However, many people choose to hire a car, particularly if their journey is taking them to locations outside of the city centre.
There are lots of tourist gems that can be explored in the area around the airport. It is a good place to start your visit to Ireland, or a good place to end it before getting your flight back home. Hiring a car is really the only option for many of the attractions, but they are all worth seeing and spending time in.
Must-See Places Close To Dublin Airport
Dublin Airport is located to the north of Dublin city centre. The areas around it are largely made up of Dublin suburbs, but there are many places to visit, including areas and locations that have considerable historical and cultural significance. Much of the public transport infrastructure is set up to transport people from the city centre out to these locations, so if you want to get around the area more freely, the best option is to hire a car.
Dublin City Centre
Dublin is a vibrant European city that is steeped in history and has a rich diversity of culture. Highlights of a visit to Dublin include the Guinness Brewery, Phoenix Park, and Kilmainham Gaol. There are museums, many of which focus on the great writers that Ireland has produced. There is also wonderful shopping and busy nightlife. Whether you want to visit an 800 year old cathedral, see a painting by Picasso, or down a pint a Guinness in a pub while listening to an Irish folk band, you can do it all in Dublin. Public transport links are available from the airport, but most people choose to drive.
National Transport Museum of Ireland
For anyone interested in public service or passenger vehicles, the National Transport Museum of Ireland is a place that must be visited. It features vehicles from as far back as 1883 and includes examples from manufacturers that are no longer in existence. The museum is in Howth, which is east of Dublin Airport, northeast of Dublin city. The easiest way to get there from the airport is by car.
If you leave Dublin Airport in your car and drive east, you will come to Portmarnock, a coastal town that is north of Dublin city centre. You should visit because of its award-winning beach, which stretches for about 10 kilometres.
Malahide Castle dates back to 1185 when a knight called Richard Talbot was given the lands and harbour of Malahide by the then king, Henry II. Generations of the Talbot family went on to live in the castle for 791 years until the last member of the family died in 1973. Today, visitors can go on guided tours of the castle and stroll through the beautiful walled gardens. It is not far from Dublin Airport, but you will need a car to get there.
Sometime around the year 1200 it was decided that the Archbishop of Dublin, John Comyn, needed a summer residence, so Swords Castle was built. It is a large castle and estate situated in Swords, a suburb north of Dublin city centre. It has been in ruin since 1324, and although work is underway to restore it, it is not open. It is possible to visit it though to see the ruin. Since it is not far from Dublin airport, it is well worth the trip, provided you have a car.
Portrane and Rush Beaches
Ireland is not a place that is often associated with beaches, primarily because of its climate, but it does have some stunning beaches. Two that are easily accessible by car from Dublin Airport are those at Portrane and Rush. They are both award winning beaches and are lined with beautiful sandy dunes. Befitting the climate, it is an area that is popular with kite surfers.
Newbridge House & Farm
Newbridge House & Farm is a unique place to visit. It is an estate that is steeped in history and that has been lived in by the same family since the 18th century. It includes a stunning Georgian mansion as well as 370 acres of land that features the ruins of a castle and a farm. The farm is a favourite with children, plus you can go on guided tours of the house. It is about a 20-minute drive north of the airport.
Skerries Mills features two working windmills and a watermill. They trace their history back to the 16th century and offer a unique insight into the Ireland of the 17th, 18th, and 19th centuries. As such, they are one of Ireland's most popular attractions. They are located in the coastal town of Skerries, which is about 25 to 30 minutes from Dublin Airport. You will need a car to get there.
Lusk Round Tower
Lusk Round Tower is a historical building located north of Dublin city centre, a short drive from the airport. It is an area that is steeped in history. The tower was built in the 9th century by Christians to help protect them from the invading Vikings. It has nine floors and stands 27 metres tall.
Ardgillan Castle has a history that dates back to 1738, but today it is owned by the state, so it is open to the public. It is a beautiful period residence with many interesting and attractive architectural features. It is situated on the 200-acre Ardgillan Demesne, which is about a 30-minute drive from Dublin Airport. The rooms in the house include the Morning Room and the Library, and they have all been restored and maintained.
Make Time For Dublin Airport
Most people travel past all the great locations on this list as well as many of the other attractions that are available around Dublin Airport. If you have time to explore, you should spend some time in this area. There are lots of things to see, and hiring a car makes it possible for you to get around many of the attractions in a relatively short amount of time.
You can then use this area as a springboard to visit other parts of the country, whether into Dublin city centre or north on the new highway network towards Belfast. Either way, your best option is to ensure you have a car, as it will make planning your itinerary much easier.