Updated: Mar 8
Dublin has the youngest population in all of Europe
Table of Contents
Top 10 Things To Do in and Around Dublin
We had a great experience on our first Sandeman's tour! Our tour guide's name was Lisa, a native to Ireland who was great at incorporating a lot of Irish jokes. We learned a lot about the history of Ireland, about their 1916 independence from Britain, and saw the Dublin Castle. She took us to Trinity College, the Molly Malone Statue, and even taught us the song about Molly Malone (which we heard live many more times throughout our trip in Dublin).
Tickets: Free! (with optional gratuity)
2. Cliffs of Moher Day Trip
Tickets: €50 with Irish Day Tours
A day trip to Cliffs of Moher is an incredible experience! Our tour guide was wonderful and there were plenty of stops to break up the trip. All in all, it was a day well spent! First destination was the Cliffs of Moher in County Clare, where we had the most time to walk around and explore the cliffs. The tour then led us to Doolin, a small town to walk around and enjoy a Dooliner beer. Lastly, the tour ended with a visit to the "small cliffs" and Galway City on the way back to Dublin. Plan your full day trip to Cliffs of Moher here!
Also Read: Cliffs of Moher Day Trip
3. Temple Bar District
This district is named due to its proximity to the "bar", or River Liffey. It is a notable street for people watching, live acts, performances, shops, and restaurants. Do not fall into the tourist trap of visiting "The Temple Bar" restaurant, when the popularity behind Temple Bar is the district itself.
Fact: Temple Bar is the name of a district on the south side of the River Liffey, not named after a bar itself.
4. Spire of Dublin (Stiffey by the Liffey)
There is a large pole that towers in the air on the north side of Dublin, along the river Liffey. Locals have nicknamed it the "Stiffey by the Liffey" as a way to add humor to what they call their "money mistake".
Fact: Dublin paid $4.5M euro to display this pole proudly
Hours: Daily 9:30 - 6:00pm
An old prison that held Irish revolutionaries by the UK government in the early 1900's. Today it is a museum, however, it was built in 1796 and was used as a prison until 1924.
Tickets: €8 for guided tours (available to book 28 days in advance)
Hours: Daily 9:30 - 5:00pm
This is a university in the middle of Dublin, with a beautiful campus and an incredibly massive library. The library is beautiful and worth a visit, with many believing it to resemble Hogwarts from Harry Potter. Many famous Irish men & women have attended this university including Oscar Wilde and Jack Gleeson (Joffrey from Game of Thrones).
Tickets for Trinity College Library: €11-€14 (free to explore the campus)
This church was founded in 1191 and is the National Cathedral of the Church of Ireland. It is the largest church with the tallest steeple in all of Ireland. Admission will allow you to learn about the history and traditions of this beautiful Cathedral.
Tickets to Enter: €7.50
St. Stephen's Green is a public park in the center of Dublin designed by William Sheppard. It holds true to its name by being a tremendous green-space for picnics, walks, and relaxing.
Also Read: Top 10 Things To Do in Dublin Ireland
Hours: Tue - Sat from 10am - 5pm & Sun - Mon from 1pm - 5pm
The National Museum of Ireland is a large museum right across from St. Stephen's Green. This is a great place to check out if you are interested in the history of Ireland, or enjoy learning about art & culture. We would also like to point out, it has free admission!
10. Dublin Castle
Hours: Daily 9:45am - 5:15pm
Dublin Castle is located in the center of Dublin, and the starting point of many walking tours (including Sandeman's tour). Tours generally consist of walking the grounds and viewing the outside-architecture of this Gothic Revival building. You can also purchase tickets to get a tour of the inside if you are interested in learning more about the history. Currently, this is a government building was formerly the seat of the British government's Irish administration up until 1922.
Ticket Admission: €8 (free to explore the grounds)
You may consider one of the below tours from Dublin:
The Best Foods of Dublin
The oldest pub in Ireland. If you only have time to eat one place in Dublin, it should be here! Make sure to get the Brazen Bangers & Mash as they are absolutely delicious and a local favorite.
J&L Favorite: Try the traditional Irish favorite, Bangers & Mash
2. Leo Burdocks
Dating back to 1913, Leo Burdocks has the best fish & chips in town! Enjoy some fresh-battered cod served with warm French fries. Leo Burdock's has had quite the list of famous customers, including Tom Cruise, U2, and Bruce Springsteen.
Must Try: the fish and chips
John Kavanagh's is a great hole-in-the-wall, historic pub with amazing Guinness pints. This is a true Irish Pub that we would consider to be a hidden gem of Dublin. When looking for authenticity and cultural immersion, be sure to add The Gravediggers to your list.
Hidden Gem: Authentic Irish pub
4. Moore Street
Moore street is home to Dublin's famous open-air fruit and vegetable market. Walk down this street in the morning for an opportunity to sample some fresh grown produce throughout your time in Ireland
J&L Recommended: fresh produce and morning flowers.
The Top 5 Craft Brews of Dublin
Hours: Daily from 10am - 5pm
There are 10 million pints of Guinness produced daily in Dublin. The Guinness Storehouse is home to five floors of history and the beer making process. You will receive a small glass, learn the proper way to taste beer, and discover the smell of hops and barley (smells like chocolate!). Once you reach the top floor of the museum, you can visit the Zero Gravity Bar, where you can enjoy your complimentary pint of Guinness while taking in an incredible view.
Tickets: starting from €22 (self-guided tour and 1 pint of Guinness)
Recommended Brew: Elevation Pale Ale
Wicklow Brewing is new on the Irish craft brew scene and opened its doors in 2014. Located just south of Dublin, this fledgling brewery is already turning heads. This flavorful and aromatic Pale Ale is bursting with fruity flavors typical of the Mosaic hop. Its light and hoppy flavor characteristics are very satisfying to the senses.
Also Read: Best Craft Brews of Europe
Recommended Brew: Red Ale
Smithwick’s brand (founded by John Smithwick) originated in Kilkenny, Ireland in 1710 and ran until 1965 when it was bought by Guinness. This delicious red can be found on tap in most bars around Dublin. Its smooth, malty, and light flavor is quite refreshing.
Also Read: Edinburgh Scotland Complete Guide
Recommended Brew: McGargles Francis’ Big Bangin’ IPA
Brewed in a small town just west of Dublin, Big Bangin' IPA is a modern take on the US West Coast IPA style. In 2017, Rye River Brewing opened its doors to the public and hasn't looked back. If you visit in Kildare, they offer brewery tours to demonstrate how this tropical and hoppy drink is made.
Also Read: Best Craft Breweries of Michigan
Everyone knows of the classic Guinness Draught, but what if you are looking for something a little different? Murphy's Irish Stout has slightly less ABV at 4.0% which is easy to drink with very little after taste. Murphy's has a long history of success dating back to 1856 in Cork, Ireland. You cannot go wrong with this creamy, smooth, and coffee flavored stout.
Planning Your Trip
Where is the best place to stay in Dublin?
Temple Bar/Trinity College Area. For our top-pick hostels based on location and value see Best Hostels of Europe.
J&L Recommended: Jacob's Hostel
If hotels are more your style, search for a great deal on Dublin hotels during your travel dates below!
How do I get around Dublin?
We would recommend only using public transportation to/from the airport and for any day-excursions outside the city. The city is very walk-able and you will likely get places faster by foot due to traffic. Here is a map of the Dublin rail and airport bus system to plan your route. Information regarding public transportation tickets can be found here.
Tip: here is a wonderful interactive site to assist in planning your transportation to/from the airport or within Dublin.
When is the best time to visit Dublin?
June through August are the most popular months to visit Dublin due to the pleasant temperatures and festivals that fill the streets. However, to avoid the crowds while still experience moderate weather, we recommend May or September.
J&L Recommended: May or September
How long should I spend in Dublin?
We recommend 2-3 days in order to see the top sights of Dublin. Have less time? Check out our 24 hour guide to Dublin here.
J&L Recommended: 2-3 days
Affordable International Data
Want to avoid roaming charges and $10/day international data fees? Airalo allows you to download an e-SIM to your phone and activate while in Europe for a very affordable price. We bought 3 GB of data valid for 30 days from activation for only $7. It worked great throughout our entire Europe trip and was very easy to install. Airalo offers e-SIMs all around the world and we can validate that it works with ease in multiple European countries.