Dublin Weekend Activities on a Student Budget

Hey Guys!

Firstly, my sincerest apologies about the lack of posting. Unfortunately I had bronchitis and my laptop decided it didn’t want to work with me anymore. I’ve been getting lots of lovely messages from you, so it’s good to know I’ve been missed! This week is a busy one, so keep an eye on my Instagram stories for launch parties and takeovers, etc.

In the meantime though, let’s take a look at weekend activities to do in Dublin on a student budget. All of these activities are as cheap or expensive as you’d like them to be. I’ve tried them all both ways and to be honest, with the right group, it doesn’t really make a difference how much you spend to have fun.

1) A day out in Dún Laoghaire
Dún Laoghaire is pretty handy because getting there is easy. There’s lots of Dublin bus routes heading out that direction including the 46a which you can grab in town. There’s plenty to do depending on what kind of day you’re feeling. You could go for a free dip in the sea at the 40ft or incredibly cheap drinks at the weatherspoons 40ft. I maintain their cocktails are both delicious and dangerous. A walk along the pier at your own pace is great for those chillier days.

Casual AF

In terms of places to snack, Dún Laoghaire has a lot to offer. It’s home to one of my favourite pubs The Purty Kitchen and one of my favourite restaurants Bits and Pizzas. If you’re grabbing a quick lunch or breakfast though, I can’t recommend Quigleys café highly enough. Finally a day here would not be complete without ice cream: Teddys are a 99 classic, must do. Scrumdiddlys will give you the ice cream experience of your life. Do both!

Quigleys Café with an absolute legend

2. Sandyford
Sandyford is a quick green line luas ride away from the city with plenty to do. My top recommendation being Jumpzone. It is an entire building of trampolines! What more could you possibly want?! Prices start at €11. I’ve had lots of great times here, so it is a must do.

3. City Centre
Days in the city can start to get pricey very quickly. Luckily, there’s more to do than shop! For arty folk Dublin is full of great free museums; my favourite being the RHA. Or better yet; bring yourself on a graffiti tour of Dublin- take a walk down the alley behind the Bernard Shaw to see some incredible pieces. For theatre heads Smock Alley do lots of eclectic plays from as little as €5 for a student ticket. Comedy gets me out on Sundays and where better to discover new comedians and get a free show than the Comedy Crunch at the Stags Head?

City Slicker

Foodwise the city is full of great spots with a student discount. I’m anticipating a blog post about that soon. Truly though, grab yourself a few snacks from lidl or tesco on your way into the city and have a picnic in Stephen’s green.

4. Dundrum
Dundrum can be another fun day out, again only a bus or a luas ride away. Dundrum is home to Rainforest mini golf where you can compete with your pals and prices for a game start at less than a tenner.

Alternatively if you fancy watching a movie with friends or bae, there is a cinema in the shopping centre with student tickets costing €7. Bonus:Tesco is located in the shopping centre too, so you can bring your own snacks!

Airfield Estate is a working farm in Dundrum less than a five minute walk from the luas. There’s lots to explore around the farm and student tickets are €8.

5. Phoenix Park
Last on my list is the Dublin Classic; the Phoenix Park. Hop on the 46a in town and head out to Dublin’s garden. I’d highly recommend bringing a picnic along and just sitting enjoying the view. You might get lucky and see some deer! If you fancy spending to see animals though, the Zoo is conveniently located in the park. Student tickets here cost €13.50 which isn’t bad for a day-long activity.

So, there we go for this week! I hope they’ve been in some way helpful. I’d love to hear your suggestions for weekend activities too so shoot me a message anytime.

I’ll catch you again soon!

Kat’s Guide to Tipsy Town

Ah the college years; nights out culminating in a bit of a dance, a bit of a cry and mighty craic. I’ve been a student for almost four years in Dublin now and much to my parents dismay (Sorry mammy!), I’ve compiled quite the list of favourite spots to go out in Dublin. I like to think I’m neither a pub nor a club girl. I believe I dabble in both. That means that this list will be a mix of both! Also I’m always open to suggestions so, absolutely feel free to send me on any you have!

Let’s begin!

  1. Twenty Two, South Anne Street -I feel like the most stylish version of myself here. I think it’s one of Dublin’s most glamorous spots. Between the decor and the service, this spot is second to none. Also the saxophone player really adds to the tunes!
  2. The Hairy Lemon, Stephens Green-This spot is super cosy and yet manages to feel hip and trendy at the same time. The music here is pretty indie. It’s a busy place, so get here early if you’d like to sit. Oh! And whilst your here, check out the wee beer garden -it’s pretty cool.
  3. Mima’s Café, Beechwood- This place is fantastic for two reasons: Great location, even better wine! Mima’s café turns into a fabulous wine bar in the evening. The best place to sit is out on the chairs outside. Grab a glass of Rosé and watch the world go by!

    Drinks at Mima’s
  4. The Mezz, Temple Bar -Into gigs and channeling your scene phase? Me too! The Mezz is where I relive those days of when I thought I was the coolest rocker in town. I definitely wasn’t, but this location manages to make you feel like it. If you’re into finding new bands and sounds, give this place a visit.
  5. Diceys, Harcourt Street -Thursdays at Diceys are the holy grail of my summer internships! This is the place that memories that you don’t really want remembered are made! That being said it’s a great place to have a bop and get those €2 pints in on a weekday

    Pints with the bro at Diceys
  6. O’Donoghues, Baggot Street- This spot is all about atmosphere! If you want somewhere to have a drink and chat, it is ideal. The smoking area has a roof covering and so many heaters, it actually feels like you’re inside. That’s my favourite part of the bar.
  7. The Purty Kitchen, Monkstown- This place is for a relaxed drink. Just minutes from Dun Laoghaire pier, it is my ideal spot for an after walk drink. It is beautifully decorated and has a really chill atmosphere.

    Dun Loaghaire Pier
  8. Coppers, Harcourt Street- If ever you have the intention of catching my awful dance moves and doing just about anything embarrassing you can think of this is the place to go. I think Coppers speaks for itself. Funky Saturday night? You bet!

Catch you at one of these spots soon!

Hair-Raising Adventures

I’ve been getting this question and never answering it properly for the last two years. I’ve spent lots of time cracking jokes about frying it. Truth is, I don’t think I’ve ever put too much thought into how I do my hair!

I’ve had a love/hate relationship with it for sure. My hair has had quite a history, but I guess most of the questions are about how it looks now so, I’ll include a horrific timeline at the end. Protect your eyes!

Fulfilling my inner Hipster checking out records at The Rage Dublin

If you are to take one lesson from this blog post, it is to go sign yourself up for a styling lesson at your local salon. Or, ask questions as you’re getting your next haircut. Being in your early twenties is all about budgeting! I love all things beauty related, but at the end of the day I use mostly guesswork. My main tools are a hairdryer (with nothing fancy attached to it), a straightener, bobbins, a detangler brush from Lidl and some bobby pins. Nothing extravagant. That being said, I used to dry my hair out completely until my fabulous hairdresser recommended that I get my sh*t together and invest in some heat protectant. He was right too. It has sorted my drying problem right out.


An attempt at snow fashion…

So, what do I do? I wash my hair! I sway between using Herbal Essences and L’Oréal, honestly because they have nice bottles and smell nice. The buzzwords I look for are drying or repairing. I kill it with heat so anything restorative sounds great to me! Every now and then I use one of those Aussie 3 minute conditioners which makes me feel really posh and my hair feels amazing. Or if I’m feeling particularly adventurous and know I don’t need to see anyone for 3 days I bang some coconut oil into it. It feels great after that, but I still haven’t worked out the knack for washing it out completely the first day.

After a shower I spritz heat protectant through my hair. The golden L’Oréal bottle or the pink V05 ones are great. After that, I break out the hairdryer. I don’t attach any fancy heads to it or aim it in any particular direction other than whatever one looks like it’s taming my curls that particular day.

This is going to sounds insane, but then I straighten my naturally curly hair and then curl it again using the same straightener. My natural hair is those sort of wild unruly curls which sounds great in a book, but I can promise you neither looks great nor feels good to brush. I aim to create soft curls.


If my hair isn’t playing ball, I generally stick to three other styles; A sort of half up bun – half down curls. A very high ponytail with any bumps squashed down with a bobby pin. Or finally scraped into a messy bun. I don’t think there’s a such thing as a neat bun with curly hair

Capture 5
Holidaying in Sligo

So there you have it. Nothing fancy, cheap AF and purely aimed at having to brush out as few knots as physically possible.

And now the horrible hair history as promised! :

1 The time my mother convinced me a bob was a great idea –it wasn’t.

World’s Most Fabulous Child?

2 The time I thought ringlets were cool.

Capture 1
A rare picture of Teenage Katherine smiling. -I was a grumpy teenager.

3 Or how about the time I let the girls in school dye it a weird purple red colour in the bathroom of a hotel on a school trip without my mother’s permission.

Check out those roots (and lack of brows)!

4 I got into wearing rollers at night for a while. This wasn’t the worst, but was definitely a lot of hassle.

Badly focused, but you get the idea!

5 The time I dyed my hair burgundy, to orange, to blonde. I guarantee it sounds cooler than it looked!

Some intense shoulder action!

The chop-I cut all the blonde bits off because my hair was fried.

Having a few cheeky ones at the Hairy Lemon pub. Also what was I thinking with my eyebrows?!

Extensions. I couldn’t stand short hair.

Attempting to be ‘hip’ in Lover’s Lane, Temple Bar

8 Growing it out and trying to find a shape.

Capture 4
Pretending my eyeball wasn’t itching because of the hair in my eye!

It isn’t a blog without brunch!

Brunches  are the saviour of my Saturday/Sunday morning hangovers! Perfectly timed, perfectly tasty and perfectly quenching that weird I got up late but its not properly lunch, but too late for cereal hunger.

When looking for a good spot to brunch I factor in a couple of things: Cost, quantity, quality and variety. As a student budget to me is everything. Dropping €20 on a meal for one is the height of fine dining. So, whatever it is, it better be worth it.

One of my top spots will always and forever be Lemon Crepe, Dawson Street. The holy grail of sweet and savoury pancakes in Dublin. My usual order is the Mexican salad beef buff crepe with a big cup of coffee. The total usually comes to around €15 and is beyond worth it. The portions are huge and haven’t failed me yet taste wise.

Pancakes at Lemon

If I’m feeling a bit posh I’ll go to Cinnamon in Ranelagh. I was drawn in initially with its unashamed bright pink exterior. Luckily it would appear they have something to shout about. Great coffee, even better wraps. Usually a busy spot. I’d make a reservation beforehand.

Anyone who knows me knows well that the one way to get to my heart is through baked goods. What can I say? I love carbs. Ann’s Bakery is spread throughout a couple of spots in Dublin, though my regular haunt is Henry Street. Cheap, cheerful and yummy. The staff are always insanely friendly and there are no words to describe their blueberry muffins. They do some savoury stuff too. Cost is pretty low on this one. So, you can treat yourself on a small eating nothing but dry pasta for a week budget.

Ann’s bakery took care of my last internship day!

The next place on my list is Café105 in Clonskeagh. Less than a 10 minute walk from UCD. You better prepare to roll home you’ll be so full. The food is great quality and the portions are massive. On top of that you can feed your inner hipster with their locally sourced juices from Ranelagh. Give the Beetroot one a go. Cost is pretty in line with a student budget as the college is so near and the décor is stunning.

Brunching at Cafe 105

Finally, I’m tipping a hat in the direction of The Hopsack in Rathmines. Not vegan myself (and this is a vegan spot) but the food is absolutely amazing. If you’re looking for variety and thought put into flavours don’t look anywhere else. You can get a decent brunch for about a tenner and the place stands out because of the friendliness of the staff. Their joyous attitude is kind of infectious. Exactly what the doctor asked for to cure your hangover.

So, there you have your spots! Perhaps I’ll see you at some soon..