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DARTing about on the trains
The train system here is great. It's reliable, inexpensive and comfortable. We went north to Howth, and south to Killiney. On the last day we went east to the airport.
To get to the airport by train you must change at Howth Junction and get the connecting bus. It only took about half an hour in traffic but we still arrived in plenty of time to check in prior to our departure.
A return to Killiney from Pearse Street Station cost just 3.85Euros return each.
Pearse to Howth return was 3.40Euros.
The AerDART bus is the connecting link from Howth Junction to Dublin airport. From Central Dublin ie: Grand Canal Dock, Pearse Street Station, or Tara Street or Connelly, it costs 7euro one way.
This photo shows the interior of the AerDART bus... there were only 3 of us traveling all the way to the airport. The driver flew along the motorway at a fair ol' speed, and woe betide any cars in the bus lane!!
Going to the coast
DART (Dublin Area Rapid Transport) is the train going through Dublin to the villages and towns (suburbs) north and south of Dublin. It is very convenient to use if you're doing a daytrip to visit the places along the coast.
Tickets can be bought from machines or the booking-office . At Connolly Station the line for buying the ticket was very long early in the morning, but it was also very quick.
I took the DART to Killiney and back from Dalkey. A return ticket to Killiney/Dalkey is 4.10 Euro (February 2007). The trains are quite frequent and run every 10 - 20 minutes and it takes about 25 minutes.
Another day I went to Malahide and Howth. I was told to get a day ticket for 7.20 Euro. I wanted to ask if it wasn’t cheaper to buy single tickets, but the clerk interrupted and said it was better for me to have a day ticket as I was going to hop on and off trains during the day. Well, looking at the website I can see it would have been cheaper to buy single tickets: Dublin - Malahide 2 Euro, Malahide - Howth 2 Euro and Howth - Dublin 2 Euro.
The trains to Malahide or Howth takes about 30 minutes and are running every 20 - 30 minutes.
Going from Malahide to Howth you take the DART back to Howth Junction and change there.
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Commuter Rail Network
The Dart (Dublin Area Rapid Transport) runs from the suburbs in the north like Malahide and Howth to the town of Greystones in the South. The DART runs along the coast so to get the best views sit on the left if your going south and the right if your going north. Timetables are posted in the stations and you must buy a ticket before you board.
The dart runs along the coast of Dublin stopping at Tara St and Connolly for the city centre. A really handy and inexpenive train system for getting into the city and out to beautisul north and south Co.Dublin beaches- Killiney, Howth and Malahide.
We just love the DART the city train which takes you north of Dublin to Howth or Malahide and south to Bray and sometimes Greystones.
It is so convenient and quick. There are a number of stations in the centre of Dublin. Pearse station which is close to Trinity college and O'Connel station very near to the bus depot and not too far from Croke Park.
Do check out where you are staying in relation to the DART. We were close to Pearse one time and never knew and walked all the way to O'Connel.
There are a number of 'special' tickets available to suit your needs.
Dart and Suburban Rail
Dublin has a commuter rail system
It rums along Dublin Bay. It is called Dart.
It is connected to a suburban rail system which goes west hrough the north city to County Kildare.
It is a very relable service but is extrtemely limited. Unless you are near to one of the stations it is of little value.
Have a look at the website to see where it goes.
DART is the way to go
Using the DART was the way to go. The bus system is OK, but sometimes the traffic was a pain in the butt. We were able to get to all the major points of interest plus. I would make sure my next B&B or hotel is a little closer. Even a five minute walk in a cold rain is not what I call enticing.
I used the DART trains to get to Howth, Malahide and Dun Laoghaire from Pearse Station in central Dublin. They are comfortable commuter trains and after the first ride, I found them quite easy to figure out as there are overhead boards on the track telling you the next destination.
Since I was doing a lot of traveling that day, I bought a day rambler pass for 8.30€ from the ticket desk, you can also buy from the machines. If you are just going to Howth and back from Dublin or even Dublin-Howth-Malahide-Dublin, it's cheaper to buy a return ticket or single tickets but as I took 6 separate journeys in one day, it was more cost effective to have the pass.
I also saw a family day rambler pass advertised, the DART website doesn't seem to have info on the day rambler passes but they do exist.
Plan your own daytrips!
There is no shortage of daytrip possibilities in the Dublin area. In the end, we decided to visit Malahide and Howth, but there are dozens of other locations we would have liked to see and they're all just a quick DART ride away! I found that the Dublin Area Rapid Transit system was a very efficient and inexpensive way to get around. From our hotel we walked over to Connolly Station (north of the Liffey), picked a destination and got information and tickets from the customer service booth. Trains run very regularly (every 15 min or so) so you don't have to plan anything ahead of time. It only cost 4.50 Euros for a roundtrip ticket to Howth and Malahide, and the trains are quite comfortable.
Dart out of town
For those coming to Dublin for a few days, the Dublin Area Rapid Transit (DART) line which runs along the coast from Malahide in the north to Greystones in the south can be handy. There are 3 stations in the city centre (Tara St, Pearse St and Connolly station) and in about half an hour you can go north to Howth or south to Dun Laoghaire. This is of course a commuter line so will be busy during rush hour in morning and evening.
To get a breath of fresh air
The DART is reasonably cheap. And by taking it to Howth in the north or to Bray in the south you can walk up onto the cliffs for a brief bracing walk.
Bray is also useful if you find the hotel situation a bit difficult in Dublin as it is a seaside resort - a bit downmarket - but possessing rows of B & B establishments.
If you're thinking about a daytrip from Dublin to one of the nearby towns, the DART train service will probably be your best option.
The trains are relatively clean and the ride is efficient and on time. I only took the DART twice. The first time, I headed from City Centre (Connolly Station, North of the Liffey) to Sutton Station (one stop before Howth) and the fare was 1.70 Euros. For the same price, I rode back from Malahide Station to City Centre.
For a complete list of fares and more information, check out the website.
As you can see from this DART map, the train services mostly the coastal coast that curves through Dublin. There are some great towns to visit along this route, many of which are basically outer suburbs where many rich Dubliners live (Bono from U2 lives in Killiney, south of Dublin).
The DART Dublin area rail transport is very efficient and modern. With signs showing how much longer till the next train and voice recordings clearly announcing stops, it is a great way to get around. Use it to go 20 minutes or so north to Howth and Malahide or south towards Bray. Great views at any of the destinations...going south will afford more views along the way. Also, a Rambler pass will cost you about 6euros and you'll be able to travel as much as you like.
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