After spending a month in Dublin, I put together a comprehensive guide of things to see, restaurants, pubs, shopping, day trips, and more. Most things we saw, some were recommended by people we trust but didn’t have a chance to visit.
Regardless of preferences, budget, or time of year, there is something for everyone in this guide!
TOURIST SPOTS (in order how much I liked them)
- Trinity College, the Long Hall, Book of Kells-Book a tour of the campus and entry to the library and Book of Kells
- Kilmainham Gaol-Historic jail, important part of Irish history
- Temple Bar-The area south of the River Liffey, where the Temple Bar Pub is located
- Irish Rock ‘n’ Roll Museum Experience-Awesome guided tour all about creating music
- St Patrick’s Cathedral-Interesting history, skip the tour (it’s way too long)
- Museum of Literature Ireland-Holds the first copy of Ulysses
- Marsh’s Library-Preserved library where James Joyce and Bram Stoker read
- Dublin Castle-Tour the Stateroom Apartments
- Christ Church-Don’t miss the crypts
- National Gallery-Free art museum
- Ha’Penny Bridge-Pedestrian bridge over the River Liffey
- James Joyce Center-Dedicated to James Joyce (but the Museum of Literature has the first copy of Ulysses, recommend that first, we skipped the cultural center)
- Guinness Storehouse-Book a reservation at 1837 Brasserie and tour the brewery
- Jameson Bow St-Dublin is the original site of Jameson whiskey, now distilled in Midleton
- Teeling Whiskey-Small batch local whiskey, the blood orange cocktail is delicious
- 5 Lamps Brewery-Local Dublin brewery on Camden St (also has the largest 4k TV in Europe, if you’re looking for a place to watch a game)
- Smithwicks– Day Trip to the original Smithwicks Brewery
- Midleton Distillery Day Trip-Current Jameson distillery, also Spot whiskey and other locals whiskeys
- Toners Pub– Best Snug
- The Long Hall-Best for a quiet pint
- Auld Dubliner-Lively and fun
- O’Donoghue’s-Huge, lots of places to sit
- The Brazen Head-Dublin’s oldest pub
- Darkey Kelly’s-Best known for live traditional Irish music
- Cobblestone Pub-By the Jameson Bow St distillery, live music, very locals feel
- Mulligan’s-By the Tara St train station, very locals feel
- Temple Bar Pub– Most touristy (walk through, no need to have an overpriced pint)
- The Bank On College Green-Gorgeous interior
- Vintage Cocktail Club
- The Blind Pig Speakeasy-Need to call for reservations and directions (may send you to their sister speakeasy, Little Pig)
- Hugo’s-Great for nice glass of wine
- Bretzel Bakery– Great pastries and bread
- Queen of Tarts-Great desserts, tea, and coffee
- Little Pyg-Best Neapolitan style pizza, Michelin guide
- Pink-Great for an Instagrammable girly meal, fried lobster roll is delicious
- Chimac-Korean fried chicken, endless Frosé with Sunday brunch
- Boxty House (in Temple Bar)-Traditional and modern Irish boxty
- Bambino Pizza– NY style pizza
- The Cheeky Piglet-Great for a quiet breakfast daily or dinner Wednesday through Friday. Call for dinner reservations a week in advance.
- Doolally (Indian, better than Konkan)- Great sit down Indian Restaurant, better than the one named best in Dublin by Step Out
- Boojum (Fast Mexican)-Perfect for a quick and delicious burrito, taco, or bowl
- Vice-Best wings and fingers, owner is from Buffalo
- The Landmark– Fresh fish and chips (my favorite in Dublin), live music
- The Lucky Duck– Indian tapas
- Sophie’s– Covered rooftop restaurant and bar
- Camden Exchange-Best place to try the Spice Bag when available, great wings
- Bunsen-Delicious burgers and shoestring fries
- FX Buckley-Recently named 6th best steakhouse in the world (I didn’t go because we don’t eat steak). Multiple locations, including the more casual Bull and Castle by Christ Church
- St Stephen’s Green-Central park, pond with lots of birds and sculptures, free audio guide available
- Iveagh Gardens-(Pronounced ivy) Has a beautiful waterfall
- Phoenix Park-Huge, has the zoo, a castle, a cafe
- Merrion Square Park-Oscar Wilde statue
- St Patrick’s Park-Café, Sunday market, great view of St Patrick’s Cathedral
- Hodges Figgis-Ireland’s oldest bookshop
- Grafton Street-main shopping area
- Parks-check for markets with local vendors depending on time of year
- Aran-Sweaters made from Aran wool are a great souvenir
- We stayed for a month at this Airbnb
- Trinity City Hotel-Recommended by a trusted traveler
- The Merrion Hotel-Beautiful spa
- The Grafton Hotel-Perfect location
DAY TRIPS (or separate trips)
- Cliffs of Moher (3:15 away)
- Galway (2:15 away)
- Newgrange (1 hour away)
- Rock of Cashel (1:50 away)
- Kilkenny (1:30 away)-Castle, Smithwick’s original brewery
- Dingle Peninsula (4:20 away, full day tour or separate visit recommended)
- Ring of Kerry (5 hours way, full day tour or separate visit recommended)
- Howth cliff walk (45 minutes way)-Recommend additional boat tour to Ireland’s Eye if you are a birder, best place for fresh fish and chips
- Wicklow Mountains/Glendalough (1:15 away)-hiking, Braveheart
- Waterford (2 hours way)-Waterford Crystal Tour
- Cork (3 hours away)
- Belfast, Northern Ireland (2 hours away, we are doing a separate trip)
- Giant’s Causeway (3 hours away, we are doing a separate trip)
TIPS FOR VISITING
- The beef here is much better than other places. There’s something special about the cows but if I Google it, I won’t eat it. Try the burger or Sunday roast. This is from a girl who doesn’t really like meat.
- The butter is so creamy and delicious. Save the healthy options for somewhere else and use the butter.
- Spice bags aren’t drugs, they are delicious paper bags full of fried chicken, peppers, onions, chips, and spices. Highly recommend trying.
- Try boxty, even if you don’t like pancakes, at least once.
- Chips are fries when they are larger, like with fish and chips, but fries when they are smaller, like typical French fries. Crisps are what we think of as potato chips.
- Speaking of crisps, try the Tayto brand crisps. They are delightful.
- Half pints are available at pubs and a great way to try a bunch of beers without getting too full (or drunk). Beer is also significantly cheaper than wine or liquor.
- It rains often, bring boots, a rain coat, and an umbrella (or buy them as souvenirs).
- Tipping isn’t required, but if you like the service, 10% is a good tip. Leaving the change at a pub will also make them happy.
- Gaelic football and hurling are major sports here and so much fun to watch.
- Within the city, there are trams and plenty of Ubers/taxis, but the majority of the city is very walkable.
- Watch where you walk! There is a problem in Dublin with people not cleaning up after their dogs and there is poop on the sidewalk basically everywhere you go.
For my four day western Ireland itinerary, click here! Northern Ireland will be a separate post, coming soon!
Love this guide? None of these posts are sponsored, so say thanks with a pint!
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