I will go somewhere for a deal. I have a list of places I’d like to visit; these are places that require a varying amount of days/money. One city I have wanted to visit, for many years, is Edinburgh. Flights to Edinburgh are always expensive. Always. Flights to Dublin are not expensive. Further, flights on Norwegian Air, from New York Stewart (Newburgh, NY) are even cheaper.
Thus, for a Memorial Day Weekend trip, we drove to Newburgh, NY, flew to Dublin, spent two nights in Dublin, flew to Edinburgh via Ryan Air (cheap), spent two nights in Edinburgh, and flew back to Dublin for one night. My planning knows no bounds. I will research trips and airports and routes and options until I find the best deal. This was the cheapest way to visit Edinburgh, from Philadelphia, for Memorial Day Weekend.
Dublin, on the other hand, I had considered visiting a few times. I had thought about a solo trip in the past few years. My good friend had spent weeks there and visited many times. This seemed like a good, cheap trip. But, overall, I was never dying to go to Dublin.
After a two-and-a-half-hour drive to Newburgh, and an overnight flight to Dublin, we arrived early in the morning. The airport bus was easy transportation to downtown and we found a place to stow our luggage.
Dublin looked exactly as I imagined: grey, squat blocks of houses, and a smaller-touristy downtown. There was also a very drunk late-night scene. We took the tour at Guinness and Jameson. We had coffee at Coffee Angel. I ate fish and chips twice, at bars with various, similar names. We had excellent Asian food at Neon Asian Street Food; a highlight is the self-serve, soft-serve machine.
After two nights in Dublin and visiting with friends from England and the US, we took an early-morning bus to the airport and a rather easy Ryanair flight to Edinburgh. Sleep-deprived, we dragged ourselves around the center of Edinburgh. We drank coffee and had excellent bacon sandwiches at Cairngorn Coffee. We checked into our AirBnb as soon as we could and took a very long nap. After a few hours, we went out for more wanderings and Indian food for dinner.
The next day we took a tour of the underground, had coffee at Brew Lab, enjoyed a Sunday Roast at The OX, cocktails at The Devil’s Advocate, and went to a comedy show at The Stand. We left the next afternoon to return to Dublin.
Our return to Dublin yielded a rare sunny afternoon. We meandered to St. Stephen’s Green and I saw flashes of Washington Square Park. In the light, I could see why the city was quaint or likable. We were there for an historic vote: a referendum passed to repeal the country’s ban on abortion. The city was plastered with signs, both for and against the repeal. We were there as results came in, the following day: the repeal passed 66.4% to 33.6%.
Overall, I feel reluctant to compare the two cities. Edinburgh has old-town charm and foggy mystery: Dublin has grit and reality. In the future, I’d like to return to Scotland to see the rest of the country by car; last week, I was in Dublin for a day. I’ll save my thoughts on this return visit for a later date. In the end, the trip was worth all the plotting and planning.