Donnerstag, 15. Dezember 2016

Dublin at Christmas - where even Santa Claus gets a perfect pint of Guinness

Only nine more sleeps until Christmas. Are you ready? I spend the run-up to Christmas in Dublin and therefore you get my advice on where you find the best Christmas gifts and you also learn something about Christmas in Ireland. The pre-Christmas period starts in Dublin after Halloween. The monsters and ghosts are stored at the attic for the next year and then they dig out all the Christmas decorations.





Where can you get the most lovely Christmas gifts?


Well, I am not a Shopping-Queen, but I like small local shops, where you can buy some traditional presents. Ireland is known for woollens. In Ireland there are more sheep than people. But it's very unfortunate that the wool is quite expensive. I'm focus on affordable gifts for Christmas. My favourite place to go shopping is the Georges Street Arcade (George Street, Dublin 2). You find a lot of vintage stuff and handcrafts there. I bought there a vintage pocket watch with Irish pattern for my dad, because he collects them. My second favourite store is called UNIQUE Crafts & Design. It's a good place to find extraordinary jewellery and handcrafted pottery.





By the way: South City Market/ Georges Street Arcade was Dublin's first purpose built Victorian Shopping Centre. The original timber structure was completed by English contractors  in 1881 and declared open by the then Lord Mayor, Sir George Moyers. However, having fallen victim to the massive inner city fire of August 22nd 1892, it was rebuilt by local designers and contractors with metal replacing timber on this occasion.

In the heart of Temple Bar you find the Jam Art Factory. They sell Irish designed prints and gifts. (14 Crown Alley, Temple Bar) My favourite are the prints on a vintage book. It's also a good shop for special souvenirs.


I also like the Jervis Shopping Centre, because it's not so big and there is a big TESCO Supermarket. They have great offers. I suggest checking, if Tesco has a cheaper alternative before you buy expensive stuff . 

My favourite Shopping Centre is the Stephen's Green Shopping Centre. They don't have the best deals, but the architecture is awesome and there are a huge number of good Cafés and Restaurants. Facing the shopping center is the park of the same name. It's a lovely place, but I hate the bold pigeons that try to pick your Lunch.

Arnotts is a proper department store, where you can buy everything. It's not the cheapest store, but they sell a huge variety of clothes and shoes. I bought letter papers there for my mother as a Christmas present, because they have a lovely stationery selection.

O'Connell Street, Henry Street and Grafton Street are the most common Shopping Streets in Dublin, but I prefer Nassau Street, because there I bought filigree necklaces for my sisters. There are some shops, that sell necklaces with the typical Irish pattern, like the Celtic Cross, the Irish Shamrock or the Celtic Knot. If you want to buy some useful gifts stop by the Kilkenny Shop (Nassau Street).

Be careful about buying some gifts in the Carroll Souvenir Shops. Sometimes they can be really bad quality. In my opinion you find better gifts in the museum shops. I really like the shop inside the Chester Beatty Library. I bought a "Gift in a tin" for a secret Santa gift there.

Don't forget to check Aldi's Specialbuys. Sometimes they sell nice stuff.


Last but not least: If you are looking for nice, cheap gift boxes or wrapping paper pop in to one of the TIGER Shops. It's a Danish  retail firm.

Bear in mind, that some shops starts their Christmas sales the last week before Christmas - and that means now!


Lighting Ceremony

 

Each Shopping Street has their own Lighting Ceremony, that means that they turn on the Christmas lights in the pre-Christmas period. But it isn't something special it is just crowded and you can see the lights every evening.

Christmas Lights in Grafton Street


My insider tip: Decobake

To get into the Christmas mood join a baking demonstration at the Decobake Shop (Bachelors Walk, Dublin 1). There is a free baking demonstration every Thursday at 6.30pm and every Saturday at 2 pm. All you need to do is to walk in and enjoy. Sometimes you can taste the cakes or biscuits.







Traditions and Food

 

To write about traditions and food could be a never ending story and therefore I'll make it short. The biggest difference to German-speaking Christmas is that they unwrap their gifts on the 25th December. We always unwrap our presents on the evening of 24th December. Therefore we arrange nothing for Santa Claus. Poor Santa! While British children prepare Milk and biscuits for Santa, Irish Children put a Mince Pie, a perfect pint of Guinness and a carrot for Rudolph on the chimney. Who wants to help Santa? :D

On Christmas Day, the dinner starts quite early - maybe 2 or 4 pm and then they eat a lot of food. Especially Turkey and for desert Christmas Pudding, Christmas Cake and/or Mince Pies.

The 26th December is a bank holiday as well. They call it St. Stephens Day. Some people go swimming for charity on the25th or 26th December. It must be really cold. Brrrr.

Don't forget there is no public transport on the 25th December, but after the huge Christmas Dinner it's probably time for a walk.


Christmas Jumper 


A Christmas Jumper is a pullover that is themed with a Christmas or winter-style design. These clothing items are often knitted. Everybody who knows the Brigdet Jones movies should be familiar with Christmas Jumper.  I bought my Christmas Jumper for our Christmas Jumper Day at school in H&M. But you can buy cheap sweaters in Tesco or Penny's as well.

In Ireland the Late Late Show's host wears an extravagant Christmas Jumper for the Christmas Late Late Toy Show and he made it famous. During the 1990s and 2000s they were seen as gag gifts. Nevertheless I love my funny Christmas jumper.

Christmas Jumper




Merry Christmas!



Kommentare:

  1. Weihnachten in Dublin muss wunderschön sein. Der Geschenkeladen und all die Lichter sehen sehr festlich aus. Die Kuchen des Dekobake Shops sind ja auch der Hammer!
    Liebe Grüße, Alex

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    1. Ich muss gestehen, dass ich voll oft in den Decobake Laden reingehe, einfach nur um zu schauen was sie für neue Kuchen gemacht haben. Da bekomme selbst ich Lust aufs Backen.

      LG Myriam

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  2. Dublin steht schon seit Jahren auf meiner Reisewunschliste - gerade in der Vorweihnachtszeit stelle ich mir das toll vor. Mit kleinen Shops kann man mich auch absolut begeistern und der Kuchen sieht sehr verführerisch aus! Vielleicht eine Option für nächstes Jahr. Im Christmas Sale lässt sich dann sicher auch das eine oder andere Schnäppchen machen... ;-)
    Viele Grüße
    Katharina

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    1. Zum Shoppen ist Dublin perfekt, hier ist aber alles, wirklich alles teuer. Angefangen vom Hotel, über Restaurants bis hin zu den Sehenswürdigkeiten. Nur die staatlichen Museen sind kostenfrei. Die Iren haben übrigens auch den Black Friday. Aber im dekorieren, sind die Iren richtig gut. Jeder Pub ist hier festlich geschmückt, in den Museen steht in jedem Raum ein Weihnachtsbaum. Es ist unglaublich, wer braucht da noch Schnee. :)

      LG Myriam

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  3. Hi Myriam,

    danke für diesen gelungenen virtuellen Stadtspaziergang durch Dublin. Meine Schwester hat da studiert, vor einigen Jahren schon, und Dein schöner Beitrag lässt Erinnerungen aufleben.

    Mein Lieblingsplatz war das Trinity-College. Ich mochte die Mischung aus Altehrwürdigkeit und Studentenquirligkeit.

    Die Message auf dem Pullover ist top! Langsam machen ist die wahre Kunst des Lebens!

    Fussige Grüsse von LangsamMacher Jana

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    1. Liebe Jana,

      dieser Christmas Jumper hat mir auch am besten gefallen. Den kann ich noch den ganzen Winter über anziehen. In Dublin zu studieren, besonders im Trinity College stelle ich mir toll vor. Ich werde meine Zeit hier, vorallem in der Sprachschule sehr vermissen.

      LG Myriam

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  4. Hm vor Weihnachten werde ich es wohl nicht mehr nach Dublin schaffen, schade, bei deinen Bildern bekommt man richtig Lust drauf. Aber Dublin bzw. Irland steht eh noch auf meiner Reiseliste #Fernweh :)

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    1. Liebe Babsi,

      Dublin, eigentlich ganz Irland sind unbedingt eine Reise wert. Ich würde gern noch einmal im Frühjahr/Sommer wiederkommen, wenn alles blüht. Da muss die Landschaft dann noch toller sein. Im März ist St. Patricks Day. Da ist ganz Irland einfach mal grün. Vielleicht auch eine Gelegenheit für einen Kurztrip. Ryanair bietet oft günstige Flüge nach Dublin an. Meine Freunde sind manchmal für 6 EUR durch Europa geflogen. [Und kamen dann nicht zur Schule ;)]

      LG Myriam

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  5. Kalter Hund in Kugelform - eine tolle Idee! Und nichts geht über beleuchtete STraßenzüge! #BloKoSo

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  6. Liebe Myriam, ich wünsche dir ein frohes Weihnachtsfest! Die Bilder von Dublin sind wie immer wundervoll, aber bei dir zu Hause in Deutschland ist es sicherlich genauso schön :-). Liebe Grüße

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    1. Ich habe noch genug Themen und Fotos für 5-10 weitere Blogbeiträge über Irland. Also freue dich bis Februar auf weitere Irland Beiträge. Im Dezember habe ich mir die Küste um Dublin herum angeschaut, die ist sooo schön. :)

      LG Myriam

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