Meet Barnacles Staff – Olivia

Name: Olivia Hanson
Age: 22
Where are you from? Saskatchewan, Canada
Hobbies: Going to live gigs with friends, hula hooping, painting, and checking off as many destinations from my European bucket list as possible!

Favourite country you have visited: Scotland or Germany

Why is it your favourite? Scotland has such a good vibe, we spent time on the Isle of Islay which is overflowing with Scotch distilleries and warm-hearted people! For Germany, I’ve been twice and had completely different amazing experiences both times. Plus I just have the fondest memories with some of my favourite people there. 

If someone else is travelling there, what should they see? Edinburgh in Scotland is in my fave top five cities; beautiful medieval vibes with a ton of fun city things to do. Scotland is lush with amazing green landscapes, so I would recommend getting out of the city and touring around the countryside. Hopefully you will stumble upon some highland cows for a photo op!
In Germany check out some Bavarian villages, the culture and food is great. Berlin was the highlight for me though, it stole my artsy heart. Filled with diversity; art galleries and museums galore. Shout out to Chaos Theory vegan café for the best cocktails and fab bartenders.

Dream destination you would like to visit next? Why?
I already have Amsterdam booked as my next adventure! Hopefully next after that will either be Iceland or Greece.


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Your favourite bar /pub in Dublin? Why? Cassidy’s. Craft beer, board games, and always great tunes.

Your favourite restaurant in Dublin? Why? Umi, a falafel joint that never disappoints. You can sit in or have it on the go, for so cheap you wouldn’t expect it to be so satisfying. I eat there like four times a week…


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 How would your perfect day in Dublin look like?
I would start it off with a coffee and some breakfast at KC peaches, a two second walk from the hostel. Take a walk around Wicklow Street and Grafton for some street performers, and up towards St. Stephen’s Green for a stroll through the park. Then head over to National Gallery of Ireland or the Science Gallery for the latest exhibitions. Then hop on a one of the many bikes available in the city centre to take a tour through the docklands! Catch an afternoon movie at The Lighthouse Cinema in Smithfield, another cool area to take a walk in. Then walk over to Capel Street for some Korean food, afterwards take a bus either to Whelan’s or The Bowery for a live gig and a couple pints!

What should people not miss when visiting Dublin?
There is always so much going on in Dublin it’s hard to choose! Getting a pint of Guinness from a traditional pub is always a must. I would try to soak up as much live music as possible, traditional as well as up and coming! The Irish are full of talent. Trying something out of the ordinary like kayaking the liffey, or segways in Phoenix Park will always make for a good story.

What are your favourite spots in Ireland? Where should travellers go after Dublin & why? For a quick trip out of the city you can always take the DART to Bray or Howth; both beautiful coastal villages that have so much to offer! Wicklow Mountains National Park is another favourite of mine for a hike and picnic with friends. And you can never go wrong with heading to Galway!

Irish expression everyone should know before coming to Ireland?
‘Your one’ ‘Your man’ to describe any random woman or man. Things can tend to get confusing if you think an Irish person is calling a stranger YOUR man…