Known for its walkability, European charm, and surplus of watering holes, the capital of Ireland is on most people’s travel bucket lists. While it’s tough to limit the list to just 10 spots to hit, if you’re lucky enough to go to Dublin, you won’t go wrong by hitting any of these destinations, whether it’s a famous landmark, beer factory, historic prison, or shopping mecca. (Hey, the dollar’s strong right now, so why not splurge a little?) Just be sure to layer up and bring an umbrella when you head out—while temperatures in Ireland are pretty moderate year-round, the weather’s known to be unpredictable.
Shop Grafton Street.
Considered Ireland’s most famous shopping street, Grafton Street is located in Dublin’s center, running from Saint Stephen’s Green to College Green. Wander along it and pop into its many boutiques, cafés, and flower stalls.
Head to the pub.
Start your visit off right by swinging by Mulligan’s, which deems itself “more than a Dublin pub; it is an Irish cultural phenomenon.” Located on Poolbeg street since 1782, this is the place to come to get a sense of what an Irish pub looked like hundreds of years ago, and it’s second only to the Guinness factory itself (more on that below) for an excellent pour of the locally brewed beer.
See and be seen at Sophie’s.
Sophie’s is an Italian restaurant, bar, and nightclub with stunning panoramic city views (which you can take in indoors or out on the terrace). Head here for a glamorous boozy brunch or happy hour on a beautiful day.
Do Dublin Castle.
Until 1922, Dublin Castle was the home of the UK’s Irish administration—now it’s a major Irish government complex, featuring a chapel, police museum, library, and state apartments (where the former royals lived). Definitely worth a visit and a ‘gram or two.
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Have a proper Irish breakfast.
The Queen of Tarts café and patisserie is the ideal place to experience a classic Irish breakfast, which includes bacon, sausage, eggs, baked tomato, and toasted brown bread. The scones, tarts, meringues, and cakes won’t disappoint either.
Visit Ha’penny Bridge.
Officially titled the Liffey Bridge but known colloquially as the Ha’penny Bridge, this pedestrian bridge was built over the River Liffey in 1816. Having recently celebrated its 200th birthday, Ha’penny is crossed by thousands of walkers daily and is a quick, easy, and worthwhile stop during any Dublin visit.
Go to the Guinness Store House.
The Guinness Store House is one of Dublin’s biggest attractions because, of course, it’s where Ireland’s famous beer originated. Head here for a brewery tour and a tasting of the dark, frothy brew at the rooftop bar.
Dig into some fish and chips.
After getting day-drunk, you’ll be craving something cheap, fried, and delicious. Make your way to Leo Burdock Fish & Chips, which has been doling out some of Dublin’s best fish and chips since 1913. The line out front might look formidable, but the food is worth it.
Explore Kilmainham Gaol.
Kilmainham Gaol Museum is a former prison-turned-museum that’s now run by Ireland’s Office of Public Works. From 1796 to 1924, the prison served as a place to detain and execute rebel leaders and members of the Irish Republican movement during the Anglo-Irish war. It might look a little creepy, but it’s full of fascinating history.
Hit up an old-fashioned pub.
The Palace Bar is beloved by locals, so you’ll get an authentic Irish pub experience here. Also, if you’ve had enough beer, the upstairs is devoted to Irish whiskey.