Revealed! Dublin's most enjoyable attraction (hic!)


There aren't many museums in the world where you're likely to find yourself doing an impromptu jig with a stranger while listening to live music, having just polished off a self-poured glass of the world's best acquired taste.

Actually there's only one – and that's the Guinness Storehouse in Dublin, comfortably the best booze-themed tourist attraction we've ever poured into.

Looking from the outside just like any other factory building, inside it's a Guinness lover's Chocolate Factory (you half expect Willy Wonka to pop out wearing one of the many novelty hats).

A series of escalators takes you on a plotted history of the Guinness brand, explaining how, for centuries, Arthur Guinness and his protégés ran their business in that most old fashioned of ways – by employing thousands of people from their own town.

It also explains how Guinness philanthropy has contributed many of the city's finest buildings over the years, leaving you with that warm feeling in your belly so rarely roused by the actions of big businesses today.

If that's something for the social history nuts, then the more scientifically curious will lap up the walk-through explaining just how the black stuff is made.

There's also an interesting insight into Guinness advertising which was as pioneering in the past as it was during the famous 'tick-follow-tock-follow-tick' surfing horses that became famous in the 90s.

But let's get onto the good stuff. For all the storehouse makes a valiant effort to keep the focus off the alcohol, what sets this place apart is the fact that it's also partly the best pub in the world.

Lessons in pouring the perfect pint are great fun even if you've worked in a bar before. Who knew, for example, that you can tell a well-poured Guinness by letting it settle and then slowly trying to pour it on the floor (the head should move as one and prevent any spillage)?

Above another two levels of live music is the museum's crowning glory, another bar encased by 360 degrees of glass, giving you an unparalleled view of the city. It's at this point that it is likely to first dawn on you that the whole bizarre building is shaped like a pint glass, and you're standing in the creamy head.

Slight overcrowding can be a problem - although maybe we shouldn't have gone on St. Patrick's Day – but that's no more true of the Storehouse than it is of any city's key tourist attractive.

The difference is that, if you're a fan of the black gold, this is a hell of a lot more fun.

The world's weirdest museums

The world's weirdest museums

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