Temple Bar is the one spot in Dublin that seems to always get a lot of mixed reviews.
While many argue about the steep prices of pints and how overcrowded it is with tourists, I don't think it should be so underestimated by us locals.
Temple Bar is an iconic part of Dublin's history and although it has been growing commercially with new additions and changes over the years, it still remains and captures the true essence of Irishness.
The hustle and bustle that you'll find around Temple Bar, you really cannot get anywhere else. It's always lively and you are bound to come across all walks of people on your path through the cobbled streets.
I was sent on a quest to find some decent spots around the renowned area for the day and had a pretty amazing day out - all on a bargain budget of €35.
After a full day out in the cobbled streets, I'm ready to go into a very happy food coma, and I have a new-found appreciation for the so-called tourist trap.
Here are some of the highlights of my day out to that I think everyone should consider checking out. There's a different side to Temple Bar that is well worth discovering...
Brick Alley Café, Essex Street
I'm a massive coffee lover and cannot start my day without a good brew, so Brick Alley Café was first on my list.
This cute little spot is definitely a hidden gem with many cafés around the area.
The independent coffee shop was buzzing when I walked in, and it's no wonder it was packed with people, because the cappuccino I had was delicious. And it cost just €2.90.
I just had to take a picture of it before drinking it.
The staff were very friendly and helpful and I'll defo have to try out their breakfast menu sometime, because my mouth was watering just looking at it.
Luigi Malones, Cecilia Street
If you're looking for a tasty good quality lunch at a fantastic price, Luigi Malones is the place to go.
Why? Because where else can you get a knock-up two-course meal and a soft drink for €10. Yes, just a tenner.
After having dinner in Luigi Malones a few weeks ago, I went back today for lunch and the food was just as good as I remembered.
I opted for the Nachos Grande for starters which came topped with beans, cheese, jalapenos and salsa, sour cream and guacamole.
For my main course, I went for Chicken and Mushroom Carbonara which was really rich and creamy. Just the way you want it.
The service was speedy, which is exactly what you need for a quick lunch break and I left content and ready for a good sit down to digest.
Queen of Tarts, Cows Lane
If you have a sweet tooth, this is the ultimate place to check out in the city centre.
Queen of Tarts is a cute little pastry and dessert shop on Cows Lane in Temple Bar, and they do mouth watering treats.
Being a chocolate lover, I couldn't resist the Queen of Chocolate Fudge Cake for €5.50 and it was even chocolatier than I imagined.
The very generous slice came with a side of cream and was described as "a chocolate sponge cake layered with chocolate icing and topped with a chocolate ganache."
The quirky tiny dessert shop also does great coffee and cheesecake.
You will want to try everything on the menu. Seriously.
Cloud Nine, Temple Bar
Although the cold weather is setting in, it's always time for ice-cream.
And this fairly new gelato parlour in Temple Bar should be your next place to check out when you want a few scoops.
They even do boozy ice-cream and gelato, and although they were out of their famous gin and tonic sorbet, I went for their Irish Coffee alcoholic ice cream.
And it was divine.
The scoop cost €4.50 and there was quite a lot of it, it definitely washed down all the food I ate today very nicely.
The staff were (thankfully) patient while I scrambled to pick what I wanted (there was so much to choose from). Everything just looked too good.
Quays Bar, Temple Bar
While a lot of bars in Temple Bar are infamous for their hiked up prices of pints, I decided to pop into Quays bar because as a Dub, I've never actually been in it.
The bar is located right in the centre square and was busy for 2pm on a Thursday afternoon.
Quays bar was cosy and full of life and there was even live music and a lot of merry tourists and people singing along.
A pint of Heineken only set me back €6.60, which wasn't the worst for Temple Bar, let's be honest.
The Gutter Bookshop
Book lovers need to check out this cute bookshop just on the outskirts of Temple Bar.
The Gutter Bookshop is an independent book store that has a great selection for any bookworms out there, and they host the odd book club evening.
I managed to nab myself a book that I haven't been able to get my hands on anywhere else, so this was a seriously successful trip.
The quiet bookshop was perfect to browse around for the afternoon...
I had a fun filled day and it didn't cost an arm and a leg - goes to show there's more to Temple Bar that first meets the eye.
What do you think of it?