What you should know before hiring a car in Dublin
Car hires in Dublin: practical information
Where to rent a car in Dublin
Dublin is a must-visit for city breaks. As one of the oldest cities in Europe, you can bet that this Irish town packs in a lot of punch. Many visitors opt for a car hire just because public transportation can be very time consuming and you'll definitely want to make the most out of your Dublin holiday. Dublin Airport is where most travellers arriving will pick up their cars. The options include: Hertz, Budget, Avis, Sixt, Europcar, Thrifty, Enterprise, Dan Dooley and County Car Rentals.
Within the city limits you'll find Budget and Enterprise near Clonliffe, Irish Car Rentals near Palatine Square, Car Rental Dublin on Chapel Street, Atlas Car Hire, Europcar and Dooley next to Trinity College. Whether you pick up your rental at the airport or in the city, always do a car hire comparison before you reserve anything. It may be worth the savings to take a taxi or bus into the city and pick up an affordable car hire there rather than from the airport.
Driving in Dublin: parking and other tips
Dublin is divided into 5 parking tariff zones, each with their own Pay & Display meters. Maximum parking is 3 hours in these spots from 7am to 7pm, Monday to Saturday as well as 2pm-6pm on Sundays but only in the city centre. Parking in the most central zone, with encompasses the entire city centre costs €2.90/hour. If you park illegally or for longer than you are allowed your car will be either ticketed, clamped or towed.
You will find 50+ car parks in Dublin, due to high demand. Most are open 7 days a week, charging anywhere from €1.50/hour to as much as €50/day (Trinity Street). The best would be to find a hotel that is centrally located and offers free parking to its guests. Then you have a safe spot during the night and have the freedom to make outings during the day. If not, there are plenty of €10/day car parks as well.
Road trips from Dublin: what to do, what to see
Irish National Stud
Irish National Stud in Tully is a good stop for horse-racing fans. It's not far from Dublin, just 40 minutes away in Kildare. Take a tour of the stud farm and then wander around the nearby Horse Museum which captures racing history perfectly. The grounds also have a beautiful Japanese Garden, designed and built in the early 1900s and are considered to be some of the finest in Europe.
Malahide Demesne Regional Park
Malahide Demesne Regional Park is another good stop, easily reached by car from Dublin. Malahide Castle is worth seeing, as is the Fry Model Railway, the biggest model train set in the world. There is also a botanical garden and a palace to explore. This is a particularly worthwhile stop with kids! The city of Malahide, right on the coast, has a very village-feel to it, with some great boutique shopping on the high street.
If you want to get a look at Ireland's rugged coast and visit a beach or two, head to Skerries. There are two beaches there, Skerries North Beach and Skerries South Beach. The Red Island Coastal Walkway is a nice place to walk along or jog or run, with views of the sea and the incredible Mourne Mountains. While definitely a nice spot to visit in summer, it can get a little wet and damp here in winter.