Need help with Dublin neighborhoods

Old Jul 4th, 2011, 12:19 PM
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Need help with Dublin neighborhoods

My husband and I have some airline vouchers we need to use, so we want to make a short trip to Dublin in September. Dublin will be the first city I have been to in a number of years that is totally unknown to me. The book I ordered is not here yet, and I have read and read on the internet, but I just cannot figure out where in Dublin we should look for a hotel.

I was considerning a three night deat at the Belvedere on Great Denmark Street, but the Tripadvisor statements are so strange--many, many love it, but then a few throw in horror stories! I also read somewhere that it may be located in a "seedy" area. There is my problem: I don't know what is considered a "good" and centrally located area in Dublin. I will make the plans for my husband and another couple and me, so I want to feel good about what I am choosing, and I want a hotel that will not make our short, cheap trip more expensive than I planned on.

We are all seasoned travelers, and I go to Europe at least 2 times every year. I know Paris, London, Rome, Florence, and Venice neighborhoods inside out and always know where I want to stay. I just cannot figure Dublin out. I don't understand City Center North and South. We prefer walking to buses and certainly to taxis. We like to be out at night and not worried about walking "home". The reference to "seedy" areas really put me off. I live in a town here that has enough bad areas to deal with daily. When I travel I want to be charmed! Can someone give me some advice?
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Old Jul 4th, 2011, 01:37 PM
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Find a map of Dublin. Locate the Liffey. Stay south of it.

[Some parts of the northside are okay, but it's something of a patchwork quilt, and it's not worth the trouble of figuring it out.]
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Old Jul 4th, 2011, 02:44 PM
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That gives me some idea.
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Old Jul 5th, 2011, 02:03 AM
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Try the Maldron still North of the River(???)but fairly central for getting around and walking distance of the Brazen Head pub.
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Old Jul 5th, 2011, 03:07 AM
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Which on in Dublin?
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Old Jul 5th, 2011, 03:07 AM
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Which one in Dublin; sorry.
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Old Jul 5th, 2011, 03:26 AM
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My personal preference would be to stay south of the river, in an area between St Patrick's Cathedral and Merrion Square, and the river and St Stephen's Green.
If you don't like to take public transport and want easy access on foot to the majority of sights and places, the ideal location should be any hotel with a Dublin 2 postcode.
Any other South of the river location should be as safe, but will lack the immediate neighborhood of museums, shops, sights, etc.
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Old Jul 5th, 2011, 03:31 AM
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There are four Maldron Hotels in Dublin!
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Old Jul 5th, 2011, 02:17 PM
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We have used the one at Smithfield before an early sailing, didn't know there were 4 options.
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Old Jul 5th, 2011, 02:39 PM
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I've stayed a couple of blocks from there at the Best Western Academy Plaza and never had a problem with the area. I never got the impression that it got dicey a couple blocks north from where I was.
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Old Jul 5th, 2011, 04:49 PM
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I could guide you a short distance from any one of the Belvedere Hotel, the Best Western Academy Plaza, or the Smithfield Maldron, and land you in places where you might not be wise walking at night. Equally, I could show you safe places, and good routes to or from those hotels.

But you won't have me there with you, and life on the south side is generally less complicated.
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Old Jul 5th, 2011, 11:53 PM
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Padraig no offence but as the local on the ground how about your recommendation for somewhere for marty to stay on the South side of the great Liffey divide?

Is this just a Dublin thing or have I never been safe staying north of the river and avoiding the Temple bar side on a Friday and Saturday night?
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Old Jul 6th, 2011, 12:23 AM
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One reason why I don't recommend hotels in Dublin is that I don't use them! If I needed to, I would not rule out the north side for myself, but I have the advantage of knowing my way around.

Traditionally, the area between the canals (the Grand Canal on the south side and the Royal Canal on the north side) is regarded as the central area of Dublin. Of course you can be safe in the north city centre, and I don't think that I have suggested otherwise. It's just that the north city centre has more dodgy pockets than the south city centre, so if somebody wants a rule of thumb, the easy advice is to say south of the Liffey.

I note your mention of Temple Bar, and think it a fair point: people normally rent hotel rooms as places to sleep, and that's not always easy to achieve in Temple Bar, particularly at weekends.

I haven't studied things closely (because I don't use hotels in Dublin) but I think people will find that for hotels of similar quality, the rates north of the Liffey are a bit cheaper. There must be a reason for this.
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Old Jul 6th, 2011, 01:17 AM
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There is relevant gangland crime in No. Dublin.
It's about trading drugs and guns, and people get shot there. It does not happen as a daily or weekly routine and tourists are not the prime target, but I think that most tourists underestimate the potential danger. Google news for Dublin's Summerhill area, for example.
Those areas do not necessarily look "seedy" like a dark alley with thugs lurking in the shadows, but more like very ordinary, modest residential areas.

Obviously, there is nothing wrong with shopping on Jervis St, visiting the GPO, or taking the bus from the central bus station, all north of the river.
But, as Padraig said, the "borders" between okay and not okay neighborhoods are not very visible otherwise.

Temple Bar will be loud and maybe a bit roudy esp. on weekends when too many people are drunk, but it's not a safety issue. The biggest danger there is probably other tourists throwing up on your shoes after their 10th pint.
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Old Jul 6th, 2011, 05:03 AM
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Marty now we have painted the whole of Dublin black, come over here to Galway instead.
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Old Jul 6th, 2011, 05:53 AM
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And I can guide people to areas in Galway where it might not be a good idea to walk at night!

You get that in all cities.
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Old Jul 6th, 2011, 01:01 PM
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Thank you all. It is south for me. I just don't want any complications. Galway is on my list; just not this time!
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Old Jul 14th, 2011, 08:38 AM
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We live in Florida where people get murdered daily and some of the most horrible crimes happen but we know where to go and not go. Street smart you have to be and I just stay off those forums because no one would visit my state... I am using public transportation and have no problem walking to the train station or bus station during the day in Dublin but would not at night. I am taking two girlfriends this trip and we booked Buswells on Molesworth st, close to Grafton and Trinity. I felt like it was a safer neighborhood. I would go north of the Liffey during the day but tend to stay in areas where I know better at night.
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