A beautiful, culture-rich city, the Irish capital is glowing with lively pubs, rich historic sites and breathtaking greenery. And if you keep your eyes peeled on your Dublin travels, you might just spot a cheeky leprechaun or that elusive pot of gold at the end of the rainbow!
Things to do in Dublin, Ireland
History aficionados and culture vultures will marvel at the abounding attractions in Dublin, from grand castles to interesting museums to beautiful cathedrals.
You are spoilt for choice for cathedrals in Dublin: unusual for a city, there are two - St. Patrick’s Cathedral and Christ Church Cathedral. St. Patrick’s Cathedral is the larger of the two and has greater national significance. Dedicated to the country’s patron saint, it is said that St Patrick himself used to baptise converts here. It also plays host to some of the Ireland’s most important public events such as Remembrance Day, important funerals and its much-beloved carol service, the Service of Nine Lessons and Carols. Whether you just want to sightsee or attend one of the services, it is a rewarding and rich experience.
As you explore the quaint streets on your Dublin visit, don’t miss Trinity College, the oldest university in Ireland. Located in Parliament Square, Queen Elizabeth I established the university in 1592. Even though it was in the heart of Catholic Ireland, it remained Protestant for centuries and Roman Catholics faced restrictions on membership to the college right up until 1873. Luckily, it is a lot more inclusive now and even the public can admire this sprawling and grand Dublin university.
The Library of Trinity College is a must-see in Dublin as it is home to the Medieval Book of Kells, a beautifully illustrated text of the four Latin gospels that was designed by Irish monks in 800 AD. When you’re done looking at the breathtaking Book of Kells, you can visit the Long Room, which contains 200,000 of the library’s ancient books. Like Oxford and Cambridge in England, Trinity College Dublin is entitled to every book published in Great Britain. As you would expect, the university has many famous alumni and you can walk in the footsteps of Samuel Beckett, Bram Stoker and Ireland’s most famous dandy, Oscar Wilde.
Put on your walking shoes for Dublin’s Phoenix Park, the largest urban park in Europe. Whether you like sport, wildlife, history or architecture, there will be something here to enchant you. The park is renowned for its famous buildings and monuments: it is home to the President of Ireland and American Ambassador’s residences, the Wellington monument, a 210-feet high column, and the Phoenix Monument, a Corinthian column that depicts a phoenix being reborn from the flames.
It’s great for wildlife too: wild fallow deer have lived in the park since the 17th Century – there are around 400-450 in the park – so you are bound to come across one of them! It is also the location of Dublin Zoo, one of the oldest zoos in the world, which is home to over 700 animals and birds. Certainly, Dublin’s Phoenix Park is not short of possibilities and it will keep you entertained for hours.
Finally, a trip to Dublin is not complete without a well-deserved stop-off at one of the city’s buzzing pubs, where locals and tourists congregate for thirst-quenching drinks and merrymaking. Sit back and indulge in a pint of Guinness and an Irish stew as you reflect on a magical Dublin vacation.