Ireland’s capital, Dublin, is a city busting with culture and things to experience. If you are lucky enough to live there or visit for a short period, you need to make the most of your time and to see all the major attractions. Here is our Bucket List for the city, the things you must do in Dublin before you die!
1. Visit Ireland’s most famous University and its magical library – Trinity College Dublin
Trinity College is one of the seven ancient universities of Britain and Ireland, as well as Ireland’s oldest university. It is a prestigious University and has beautiful characteristics such as the old library which is open to visitors.
2. Visit Ireland’s most famous Prison – Kilmainham Gaol
Kilmainham Gaol is a former prison located in Kilmainham in Dublin, which is now a museum. It has been run since the mid-1980s by the Office of Public Works, an Irish government agency.
Kilmainham Gaol played an important part in Irish history, as many leaders of Irish rebellions were imprisoned and some executed in the prison by the British and in 1923 by the Irish Free State. It is a fantastic tourist attraction now and provides daily tours.
3. Visit the home of Ireland’s most famous drink – The Guinness Storehouse
Guinness Storehouse is a tourist attraction dedicated to Ireland’s most famous drink at St. James’s Gate Brewery in Dublin. Since opening in 2000, it has received over four million visitors, making it Ireland’s most visited attraction. The Storehouse covers seven floors surrounding a glass atrium shaped in the form of a pint of Guinness. It is an excellent tourist attraction and has to be on any Irish Bucket List!
4. Party at Ireland’s best-known Nightclub – Copper Face Jacks
Love it or loathe it, this is currently Ireland’s most famous nightclub. The Harcourt Street nightclub, which stretches over three floors, can expect a crowd of up to 1,000 on any of the seven nights a week on which it opens, with numbers doubling on Saturdays.
5. Visit the Historic Collins Barracks
Collins Barracks is a former military barracks in the Arbour Hill area of Dublin, Ireland. The buildings are now the National Museum of Ireland, Decorative Arts and History. Housing both British armed forces, and Irish army garrisons through three centuries, the barracks were the oldest continuously occupied example in the world. It is a very interesting historical site and is a must for anyone who visits Dublin!
6. Visit National Gallery of Ireland
The National Gallery of Ireland houses the Irish national collection of Irish and European art. It is located in the centre of Dublin with one entrance on Merrion Square, beside Leinster House, and another on Clare Street. Due to ongoing renovations, the Clare Street entrance is the only one currently open.
It was founded in 1854 and opened its doors ten years later. The Gallery has an extensive, representative collection of Irish painting and is also notable for its Italian Baroque and Dutch masters painting. The current director of the gallery is Sean Rainbird. Entry to the gallery is free.
7. Do the 12 Pubs of Christmas
12 Pubs of Christmas has been a phenomenon in recent years in Dublin. “Christmas jumpers” or sweaters and Santa hats are the uniform of choice for the soldiers of the 12 Pubs and every weekend in December you will see drunk Santa Clauses and Mrs. Clauses in every town in Ireland. It is always a fun and memorable occasion!
8. Visit the centre of power in Ireland – Leinster House
Leinster House is the seat of the Oireachtas, the national parliament of Ireland. Leinster House was originally the ducal palace of the Dukes of Leinster. Since 1922, it is a complex of buildings, of which the former ducal palace is the core, which houses Oireachtas Éireann, its members and staff.
The most recognisable part of the complex and the ‘public face’ of Leinster House continues to be the former ducal palace at the core of the complex.
9. Visit Ireland’s biggest stadium for an All-Ireland Final – Croke Park
Croke Park is home of the GAA in Ireland. Named in honour of Archbishop Thomas Croke it is often called Croker by some GAA followers in Dublin, it serves both as the principal stadium and headquarters of the Gaelic Athletic Association (GAA). The greatest occasion anyone can go to here is a football or hurling All-Ireland Final. Tickets are like Gold Dust but if you get the chance you must grab it!
10. Eat at a Michelin starred restaurant without breaking the bank – The Chapter One
This Michelin starred restaurant is endlessly popular, and definitely a bucket list kind of place for a special occasion.
However it doesn’t have to break the bank – the three-course pre-theatre menu is €37.50, while the 8-course tasting menu is €85pp.
11. Visit the symbol of revolution in Ireland – The General Post Office (GPO)
The General Post Office in Dublin is the headquarters of the Irish Post Office, An Post, and Dublin’s principal post office. Dublin’s GPO is indelibly associated with the 1916 Rising and the events that led to the creation of an independent Irish state.
The stern grandeur of its façade, Irish flag flying proudly aloft, is an image that evokes a justifiable sense of heroism and nationhood. In the course of its long history, the GPO has witnessed much more than the events of Easter Week.
12. Visit Dublin Castle
Dublin Castle off Dame Street, Dublin, Ireland, was until 1922 the seat of British rule in Ireland, and is now a major Irish government complex. Most of it dates from the 18th century, though a castle has stood on the site since the days of King John, the first Lord of Ireland.
The Castle served as the seat of English, then later British government of Ireland under the Lordship of Ireland (1171–1541), the Kingdom of Ireland (1541–1800), and the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland (1800–1922). After the signing of the Anglo-Irish Treaty in December 1921, the complex was ceremonially handed over to the newly formed Provisional Government led by Michael Collins.
13. Visit Ireland’s most famous cemetery – Glasnevin Cemetery
Glasnevin Cemetery, officially known as Prospect Cemetery, is the largest non-denominational cemetery in Ireland with an estimated 1.5 million burials. It first opened in 1832, and is located in Glasnevin, Dublin. Some of Ireland’s most famous people are buried here including Michael Collins, Eamon de Valera, Luke Kelly, Daniel O’Connell and many more.
14. Attend a gig at Whelans
This Dublin venue has seen many of the greats tread its boards. It’s been around for 25 years and is a hotspot for up and coming future superstars – plus it’s also a great late pub. it also featured in the Hollywood movie PS I Love You.
15. Have the best value pint in Dublin – Dicey’s Garden
This place is a dream, especially in the summer months. It has a massive beer garden, is busy most nights during the week and pints are 3 Euros (depending on what night you visit), which is simply unbeatable.
16. Eat Dublin’s Best Burrito – Boojum
Boojum is now famous around Ireland and only available on this island. The Boojum chain started in Belfast before expanding to Dublin and Galway after massive success in the north. If you haven’t tasted this heaven-like burrito, go and get one as fast as you can!
17. Experience one of the Biggest parks in Europe – Phoenix Park
Phoenix Park is a beautiful urban park in Dublin, lying 2–4 km west of the city centre, north of the River Liffey. Its 11 km perimeter wall encloses 707 hectares (1,750 acres), which makes it one of the largest walled city parks in Europe.
It includes large areas of grassland and tree-lined avenues, and since the seventeenth century has been home to a herd of wild Fallow deer. The Irish Government is lobbying UNESCO to have the park designated as a world heritage site.
18. Eat one of Dublin’s most expensive steaks – Shanahans
Follow in the footsteps of Bill Clinton and chow down in Stephen’s Green’s swanky American steakhouse. It’s elegant, it’s classy and it’s renowned for having the best steak in Dublin. If you didn’t manage to blag a trip to Shanahans on a boomtime expense account then brace yourself for the extravagant price tags. You’re looking at about €100 a head to tick this one off the bucket list.
19. Experience a massive game at the Aviva
Aviva Stadium is the home of Soccer and Rugby in Ireland and has a capacity of 51,700. It is built on the site of the former Lansdowne Road stadium, which was demolished in 2007. A big game for Ireland, either in Rugby or Soccer, is an amazing experience and one not to be missed.
20. Take a stroll through the beautiful St. Stephen’s Green
St Stephen’s Green is a beautiful city centre public park in Dublin. The current landscape of the park was designed by William Sheppard, which officially opened to the public on Tuesday, 27 July 1880.
The park is adjacent to one of Dublin’s main shopping streets, Grafton Street, and to a shopping centre named for it, while on its surrounding streets are the offices of a number of public bodies and the city terminus of one of Dublin’s Luas tram lines. It is often informally called Stephen’s Green. At 22 acres, it is the largest of the parks in Dublin’s main Georgian garden squares.
21. Experience a massive gig at the 3Arena
The 3Arena is a 14,500-capacity amphitheatre located at North Wall Quay in the Dublin Docklands in Dublin, which opened on 16 December 2008. It was built on the site of the former Point Theatre.
From 2008 to 2014, the 3Arena was known as The O2. Its 14,500 capacity makes it the largest indoor arena in Ireland. The venue was rebranded on 4 September 2014 as the 3Arena due to the takeover of O2 Ireland by Three Ireland. When the biggest bands in the world come to Ireland, they usually come here!
22. Raise money for charity by running the Dublin Marathon
Taking part in the Dublin Marathon has to be on anyone’s Bucket List. This annual marathon is normally held on the last Monday in October, which is a public holiday in Ireland. Held each year since 1980, in 2007 there were about 11,000 race participants, half of whom were from overseas. The Dublin marathon is known as the friendly marathon and locals will line the roads to cheer you on an emotional and unforgettable journey.
23. Do a Traditional Irish Pub Crawl
It wouldn’t be right to do a Dublin Bucket List without the inclusion of a traditional Irish Pub Crawl. The city centre is full of traditional pubs everywhere you look, so you could easily get your friends and family together and start a bar crawl through some of Dublin’s classic pubs!