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Upper Lake at Glendalough
cc-by-sa/2.0 – © Gareth James –

If you’re travelling to Dublin on business, then chances are that you only have a day or two at most in Dublin itself.

However, considering Ireland’s reputation for boasting beautiful countryside and magical landscapes, you are probably going to want to get out a bit and see what everyone has been harping on about.

Luckily, Dublin is located in Ireland’s eastern coast which is characterised by emerald green hills, charming villages, mountains, waterfalls and beaches. All of these things are easily accessible from Dublin itself and you are bound to be able to fit in a trip to one or more in a short stay.

So be sure and get your chauffeur driver to take you to see at least one of the following places near Dublin:

1. Howth

Just 16 km out of the city centre lays the suburb and peaceful fishing village of Howth. Formerly a Norse stronghold, this town is located at the northern tip of Dublin Bay and owes its economy to its fully-operational West Pier, which sees fishermen bringing in fresh catches at the end of every day.

Howth is worth a visit for some of the freshest and most delicious seafood in the country alone, but it’s also recommended to take the trail to the top of Howth Head for exquisite ocean views. Also visit the Baily lighthouse and the Howth Castle for an extra treat.

2. Malahide

Malahide is undoubtedly one of Ireland’s most exquisite small towns. Located on the Broadmeadow estuary, just 16 km outside of Dublin, there is lots to see and do in this picturesque seaside town.

Visit the 250 acres of parkland and beautiful gardens that are part of the Malahide Castle estate, and spend hours walking on the myriad of pathways. Pop over to Avoca for a delicious lunch, and make sure to have a pint at one of the many beachside restaurants and pubs before you head back.

3. Newgrange

Newgrange is certainly a sight to behold; it is one of Europe’s most impressive Neolithic sites and is conveniently located just an hour north of Dublin by car. The sites of Newgrange, Knowth and Dowth are Unesco World Heritage-listed and the huge burial mounds date back to 3200 BC.

It’s a wonderful place to visit that encapsulates the feeling of an ancient Irish spirit and folklore that the country is known for. The Hill of Tara is also found close by and makes for a wonderful side tour too. It is an ancient ceremonial site – thought to be associated with ancient kingship rituals.

4. Glendalough

Just over an hour’s drive from Dublin lies the “Glen of Two Lakes”. It has a number of monastic historic sites that are situated along stunning lakeside scenes.

Founded by St Kevin in the 6th Century and the church, a graveyard and a beautifully-preserved circular stone tower still remain. This makes for an incredibly scenic trip out of Dublin, perfect for the short-term travellers.

These are just some of the many wonderful day trips that you can take if you are only stopping over in Dublin for a day or two. However, there are tons more incredible activities to get up while you’re there.