Top 30 best things to do and see in Dublin

As the Irish capital, you are sure to visit Dublin soon. To help, we’ve compiled a list of our 30 best things to do and see in Dublin today.

Note: this travel article should be used only to plan future trips. Please stay at home until the government has advised otherwise.

Dublin, the capital of Ireland, is often the first stop for visitors to the Emerald Isle. Although its size is small in comparison with other European capitals, there are many things to see and do. With over 10 million visitors per year, there is no doubt that Dublin makes a great place to explore.

Whether you’re in search of some immersive historic experiences, a chill and laid-back day, or simply a day full of adventure, there is something for you in Dublin.

Here are our top 30 best things to do and see in Dublin today!

30. Visit The National Leprechaun Museum – for Irish myths and folklore

Visit The National Leprechaun Museum – for Irish myths and folklore
Credit: geograph.ie

Uncover the world of mythical creatures as they come to life through the medium of art and storytelling. With enthusiastic and informative guides, learn about some of the magical beings as you wander through the themed rooms.

If you have ever wondered what it is like to feel like a fairy or leprechaun, this is the place. Release your inner child as you climb on top of the giant-sized furniture and become immersed in the mythical world.

Address: Twilfit House, Jervis St, Dublin

Price: from €14 per person

29. Be entertained on Grafton Street – bask with the buskers

As one of the busiest pedestrianised streets in Europe, Grafton Street is always buzzing with people. One can’t walk down Grafton Street without meeting an entertainer or five.

From buskers to fire breathers, sand sculptors and dance acts, and everything in between, no two trips down Grafton Street are the same. You never know who will be busking, as famous acts such as Passenger have had an impromptu gig here.

Address: Grafton Street, Dublin, Ireland

28. Experience the GAA – Ireland’s national games

Gaelic football and hurling are the most popular sports in Ireland. They are traditional Irish sports played by men and women of all ages in every town and village in Ireland.

So, why not join in the madness of trying your hand at carrying a ball (sliotar) on a stick (hurley) or soloing the football down the pitch as you embark on some of the world’s fastest field sports?

AddressC/o Na Fianna CLG, Mobhi Road, Glasnevin,, Dublin 9

Price: from €28 per person

27. Visit the Guinness Storehouse – pour your own pint

No trip to the capital would be complete without a visit to the home of Guinness, and it comes with a tour for all budgets and desires.

Discover the process of brewing and learn about the history as you wander around at your own pace. Then try your hand at pouring the perfect pint and enjoy it while soaking in the views of Dublin from the Gravity Bar, its seventh story bar.

AddressUshers, Dublin 8

Price: from €18.50 per person

26. Go for a hike – get away from the city

Dublin is so much more than just a hustling and bustling city; for those searching for a bit of nature and adventure, there is a hike for you.

Spoilt for choice, you can do some coastal walks; taking in views of the Irish Sea and coastline or venture up some mountain trails for breath-taking views of the surrounding area.

25. See St. Patrick’s Cathedral – in honour of Ireland’s patron saint

St. Patrick’s Cathedral – in honour of Ireland’s patron saint

Built-in honour of Ireland’s patron saint, St. Patrick’s Cathedral is one of the few buildings left from medieval Dublin. It is built on the site of a well which is thought to have been used by Saint Patrick to baptise Christians.

Take in the beauty of the stained-glass windows and marvel at the 200 monuments and statues in Ireland’s largest cathedral.

AddressSt Patrick’s Close, Wood Quay, Dublin 8, A96 P599

Price: from €6.50 per person

24. Visit the National Botanic Gardens – wander amongst the plants

Situated on 40 acres of land, these gardens are the perfect place to relax and unwind in this beautiful oasis. With over 20,000 species of plants from a variety of habitats from all over the world, there are hours’ worth of exploring to be done.

Situated just three kilometres from Dublin City Centre, you will feel like you are in a whole other world as you wander through rose gardens, arboretums and pond areas.

AddressGlasnevin, Dublin 9, D09 VY63

Price: Free entry

23. Discover interesting finds in Temple Bar’s vintage stores – Dublin’s treasure troves

Known for its cobblestone streets and pub scene, Temple Bar is also home to quirky vintage stores. With eclectic shop fronts and multicoloured stock you are sure to find everything from boutique brands to one-off pieces in these stores.

Much loved by celebrities such as Ariana Grande, the vintage stores in Temple Bar are some of the biggest treasure troves in Dublin for all vintage lovers. 

Address: Temple Bar, Dublin, Ireland

22. Get aboard the Jeanie Johnston – retrace the story of the Famine

Jeanie Johnston – retrace the story of the Famine
Credit: William Murphy / Flickr

This replica “coffin ship” allows you to experience what life was like onboard, as you see the cramped conditions many travelled in across the Atlantic Ocean, to find a new life in America.

The passionate and knowledgeable tour guides will bring the history of the Famine to life as you hear about the traumatic voyage. These incredible tour guides ensure that the Jeanie Johnston one of the best things to do in Dublin.

AddressCustom House Quay, North Dock, Dublin 1, D01 V9X5

Price: from €10 per person

21. Visit the Gallery of Photography Ireland – leading Irish art

Located in the heart of Temple Bar, the gallery showcases the work of leading names in Irish and international contemporary photography.

With exhibitions changing every two or three months, the space is constantly evolving creating a beautiful environment for supporting and promoting artists, making this one of the best things to do and see in Dublin.

AddressMeeting House Square, Temple Bar, Dublin

Price: Free entry

20. The Original Dublin Alternative Tour – visit Dublin’s underground

Think you know all the sights and scenes in Dublin? Well, think again! You will be introduced to the underground and alternative cultures of Dublin, taking note of the graffiti and street art scene.

Learn about some of Dublin’s best-kept secrets while being introduced to some of the best coffee spots, cheap but good eats, and the best places for a pint or two!

Address: Windmill Lane, Dublin Docklands, Dublin, Ireland

Time: The tour leaves at 11am every day.

Price: Free

19. Read a book in the Iveagh Gardens – Dublin’s secret garden

Read a book in the Iveagh Gardens – Dublin’s secret garden
Credit: commons.wikimedia.org

Situated in the city centre, the Iveagh Gardens is known popularly as Dublin’s “Secret Garden”. Surrounded by stone walls, this park truly is a hidden gem.

With rustic grottos, fountains, a small maze, and a waterfall this hidden sanctuary is the perfect place to watch the world go by or unwind with a book on the lawns on a sunny day.

AddressSt Stephen’s Green, Park, Dublin 2, D02 HX65

18. Grab some fish n’ chips at Leo Burdocks – Dublin’s oldest chipper

Opened in 1913, the oldest chipper in Dublin now has seven locations across the county. Their ever-famous crispy, golden chips that manage to remain soft in the middle and the freshly battered fish is what gives this place its reputation.

The chipper is renowned for pulling in big names which are listed proudly on their hall of fame, such as Liam Neeson, Bruce Springsteen and Russel Crowe.

Address2 Werburgh St, Christchurch Pl, Wood Quay, Dublin, D08 HC82

17. Learn to Irish dance at O’Shea’s Merchant – dance the night away

If you are keen to put your glad rags on and dance the night away, then head to O’Shea’s where there is live music seven nights a week.

On Monday nights they have Irish dancing lessons where you can join in with locals for the weekly jigs and reels.

Address12a Lower Bridge St, The Liberties, Dublin, D08 Y271

16. Ask for help finding love at White Friar Church – the remains of St. Valentine

The remains of the patron saint of love, St. Valentine, are actually in Dublin. Many people visit the shrine of St. Valentine to ask for help finding love or to ask that he watches over them in their lives together.

Some people believe that it was their visit to St. Valentine’s shrine that helped them find the love of their life. So, who knows, maybe St. Valentine can help you find love!

Address56 Aungier St, Dublin 2, D02 R598

Price: Free Entry

15. Cycle through Phoenix Park – roam with the deer

Cycle through Phoenix Park – roam with the deer

Measuring a massive 1,752 acres, this beautiful park is the largest walled city park in Europe. With a herd of wild fallow deer that roam freely and endless trails that stretch across this stunning green park, there is so much to see and do in Phoenix Park.

Keep an eye out for Áras an Uactharáin (the President’s residence), and the Wellington Monument as you cycle through this impressive park. 

AddressPhoenix Park, Dublin 8

14. Visit the Long Room – unleash your inner bookworm

Admire the distinctive and beautiful barrel ceiling along with marble busts of famous philosophers and writers that line the walkway of Trinity College’s collection of its 200,000 oldest books.

With floor to ceiling bookcases filled with old books and manuscripts, this is what library dreams are made of. Among its collection is a rare copy of the 1916 Proclamation of the Irish Republic and the beautifully illuminated manuscript of the Book of Kells.

AddressCollege Green, Dublin 2

Price: From €11 per person

13. View the city from the water with City Kayaking – exploring Dublin from the Liffey

What better way to explore Dublin than from the Liffey, which has been used for centuries for the transportation of goods.

With experienced local guides to lead you on this tour, you will be in safe and capable hands as you discover Dublin from a new vantage point.

AddressCustom House Quay, North Dock, Dublin

Price: From €25 per person

12. Visit the Irish Whiskey Museum – one of the best things to see and do in Dublin

Embark on a voyage of 2000 years of Irish whiskey history before getting the chance to taste a variety of Irish whiskeys.

If you are a whiskey lover, this is the place for you, as their experts will always be on hand to help you find the perfect whiskey to suit your palate.

Address119 Grafton Street, Dublin, D02 E620

Price: From €20 per person

11. GPO Witness History – immerse yourself in the 1916 Easter Week

GPO Witness History – immerse yourself in the 1916 Easter Week

Located within the historic General Post Office, explore the history of the 1916 Easter Rising right where it happened. With authentic artefacts and state-of-the-art digital displays, the history of Ireland is brought to life.

Learn about those who played crucial roles in the Easter Rising, as the stories of those affected are brought to the forefront. This is truly one of the best things to see and do in Dublin.

AddressO’Connell Street Lower, North City, Dublin 1, D01 F5P2

Price: From €8.50 per person

10. Visit the Hungry Tree – satisfy your city appetite

As the name suggests, this tree has had an appetite, and one for a cast iron bench. This 80-year-old tree has grown in such a way that it appears as though it is eating the bench.

This urban curiosity leaves imaginations running wild and it is a quirky attraction not to be missed if in the area!

AddressKing’s Inn Park, Co. Dublin

9. Grab a book and a bite to eat at The Winding Stair – overlook the Liffey

This independent bookshop and restaurant overlooks the River Liffey, with an iconic view of the Ha’penny Bridge. This ground floor bookstore leads via an atmospheric, creaking and winding staircase to a beautiful restaurant.

Situated over three floors you can find books to suit all tastes along with high-quality Irish cooking. Be sure to grab a window seat if you can as the views are just spectacular!

Address40 Ormond Quay Lower, North City, Dublin 1, D01 R9Y5

8. Take a tour of Kilmainham Gaol – for the history buffs

You will learn about the history of the gaol through the art of storytelling. Gain a dramatic insight into what it was like to be confined to the gaol and learn about some of its notorious political prisoners.

The Gaol played a crucial role in Ireland’s turbulent political history, so if you are a history buff or want to learn more about Ireland’s dark past then this a tour for you!

AddressInchicore Rd, Kilmainham, Dublin 8, D08 RK28

Price: From €8 per person

7.  Grab some treats at the local markets – ­authentic Dublin goods

Grab some treats at the local markets – ­authentic Dublin goods
Temple Bar food market. Credit: William Murphy / Flickr

With markets happening every day throughout the city and county you will find baked goods galore, fresh fruit and vegetables, and local crafts to suit all tastes and budgets.

Some of our favourite markets are the People’s Park Market (every Sunday), the Temple Bar Food Market (every Saturday), the Balbriggan Fish and Farmer Market (every Friday) and the Moore Street Market (Mondays-Saturdays).

Peoples Park Market – AddressPark Rd, Glasthule, Dublin

The Temple Bar Food Market – AddressMeeting House Square, Temple Bar, Dublin

The Balbriggan Fish and Farmer Market – Address: Georges Square, Balbriggan, Dublin

Moore Street Market – Address: Moore Street, Dublin

6. Discover Dublin’s statues – Irish citizens immortalised

Dublin city is famous for the many statues that are dotted across it. Whether its revolutionary leaders, literary figures or musicians, Dublin has immortalised many Irish citizens into life-sized statues.

We suggest wandering through Merrion Square and up O’Connell Street to see a few within a short distance of each other!

Address: Merrion Square, Saint Peter’s, Dublin, Ireland

5. See a show at one of Dublin’s many venues – the best of the city’s art and culture

See a show at one of Dublin’s many venues – the best of the city’s art and culture
The Olympia Theatre. Credit: William Murphy / Flickr

Dublin is undoubtedly full of art and culture and with many theatres dotted throughout the city, there is always a show or two on!

Whether it is a comedy, a ballet or a musical you’re after, you will find something on to suit you. We suggest checking out the Project Arts Centre, the Gaiety Theatre, Smock Alley, and the Olympia.

AddressThe Olympia Theatre, 72 Dame St, Temple Bar, Dublin 2, D02 K135, Ireland

4. Become inspired at the Museum of Literature – home of Ireland’s literary giants

As Ireland is the land of saints and scholars, a trip to Dublin would not be complete without a trip inside the place where many famous writers studied – UCD Newman House.

Encounter rare gems from the National Library of Ireland, such as the first copy of Ulysses by James Joyce. With immersive exhibitions, artefacts and a beautiful and quiet garden out back this museum is not to be missed.

AddressUCD Newman House, 86 St Stephen’s Green, Saint Kevin’s, Dublin, 2

Price: From €6 per person

 3. The Cobblestone – catch some traditional Irish music

Whether you are on the hunt for somewhere to enjoy a pint with some live music in the background or want to embrace Ireland’s music culture, then this is the best option for you!

It is described fondly as a “drinking pub with a music problem” and it is no wonder it is one of the most famous venues in Dublin for a trad sesh.

Address77 King St N, Smithfield, Dublin, D07 TP22

2. Visit the Chester Beatty Library – the rest of the world brought to Dublin

Situated in the clock tower building in the gardens of Dublin Castle, this library is home to the finest collection of manuscripts and books made by a private collector in the 20th century.

Discover treasures from Europe, the Middle East, North Africa and Asia such as works from the leading calligraphers of the Islamic world and scrolls from China.

AddressDublin Castle, Dublin 2, D02 AD92

Price: Free entry

1. Enjoy a beverage along the banks of the canal – cans by the canal

Enjoy a beverage along the banks of the canal – cans by the canal
Grand Canal Square at night. Credit: William Murphy / Flickr

It is easy to believe that one of the best things to see and do in Dublin each day is to sit out on the banks of the Grand Canal. Soak in the atmosphere along the canal on a lovely sunny day and nothing will beat it.

Whether you would like to people watch, dog spot, read a book, or simply just enjoy a coffee, this is the experience for you. With ample spots and benches dotted about the canal, there will be a perfect spot for you to enjoy the views.

Address: Grand Canal, Dublin

So, whether it’s raining or shining there is absolutely heaps of things to see and do in Dublin today, no matter the budget! Get out there and explore the magnificent capital; what are you waiting for?