A Stroll through Smithfield & Stoneybatter
by Laura Chabal
Dublin is a blossoming city that has so much more to offer than its very popular city centre & Temple Bar areas. I moved to Dublin over two years ago and walking around the city is what truly made me fall in love with it. In rain or shine, Dublin is always a treat and you are always able to find a cosy pub to shelter from the rain. Smithfield and Stoneybatter are two of my favorite destinations on the north side of the Liffey. Though they may be less travelled than the city center, these villages are filled with character and beautiful independent shops to discover. Creating lots of buzz amongst Dublin residents, you will feel like one of the locals popping into all these lovely places. The area, though it has had a make-over and a boom with trendy places opening, it hasn’t lost its heritage, wonderful atmosphere and beautiful diversity. To start your adventure I highly recommend a pit stop at Proper Order Coffee on Haymarket street. The adorable specialty coffee shop is perfect for coffee lovers. Take a seat, enjoy the best coffee in Dublin and treat yourself to a gorgeous Scéal pain au chocolat (best ones in the city and this is coming from a Frenchie).
Arran Street East
1 Little Green Street
Arran Street East is a stoneware studio hidden behind Dublin’s Victorian covered market. The Victorian Fruit & Vegetable market in Smithfield inspires the stoneware color palette, and walking into the studio you are surrounded by all their beautiful creations and fresh flowers straight from the market. If you’re lucky you can peek through the back to see their potter working on some of their pots, all of which are made, glazed and packaged in the studio. Neighboring Oxmantown, famous for their sandwiches, is Arran Street East’s creative director, Laura Magahy’s, favorite coffee shop. Read More
The Wool Felt Shop
74 Benburb Street
The Wool Felt Shop occupies an old butcher shop maintaining its original facade, but it’s the little felt mice and sheep that will catch your eye in the window. The Wool Felt Shop also shares the premises with Jennifer Slattery, a textile designer who creates napkins, table runners, place mats and cushions. The wool felt shop is open Friday & Saturday but if you see someone working on other days don’t be shy to give a good knock on the door!
76 Benburb Street
Fish Shop is by far the best fish and chips restaurant you will find in Dublin. This relaxed little wine bar/fish and chip shop has the freshest fish and will not disappoint. Beautifully decorated with a simple menu you can take a seat and rest assured that the wine suggestions will be perfect to compliment your mood and dish. If you would like to linger longer over dinner we definitely recommend making a reservation at their sister restaurant around the corner. Great review by food critic, Katy McGuinness, here.
The Lilliput Press
62 Sitric Road
The Lilliput Press is an independent Irish publisher founded in 1984. It is one of the most prestigious publishing houses in Ireland, specializing on Irish interest books with a focus on biographies, historical non fiction as well as memoirs. The charming shop front invites you into a room filled with beautiful books and a gorgeous greyhound named Phoebe will be there to welcome you. Across from The Lilliput Press you will also find the Lilliput Stores, a small independent food store which sells delicious sandwiches, coffee and a range of seasonal fruit and vegetables.
Lyón Loring is a charming vintage lifestyle store which carries handpicked vintage products including clothes, kitchenware and mirrors. They opened this store due to a love of history, specifically the way small pieces, such as jewelry have such a rich history. All their pieces are handpicked in New York, San Francisco, England and Ireland.
More Shops, Eats & Visit
As you continue up Manor Street, you should also pop into Bi Urban, an organisation working on a large scale project looking to transform the neighborhood into an ecology friendly environment. They stock a range of products made from honeybees, gifts and stationery. Bi Urban also hosts small exhibitions and anyone working there will be more than happy to talk you through their projects and what they’re currently working on. Further up Manor street you’ll come across Love Supreme who serve up some delicious coffee and baked goods for that afternoon “pick-me-up”. Their signature white facade is known for its rotating name change depending on the cause they are promoting. Close by, back on Benburb Street, is the National Museum of Decorative Arts & History housed in a 300-year-old converted army base, Collins Barracks. A short walk away is the Phoenix Park, one of the biggest urban parks in the world. Walking through the Phoenix Park will make you feel miles away from the city. If you’re lucky you might come across some of its famous deer and could have a wander through Dublin zoo.