Dublin's festivals are many and varied, spanning every season and a broad range of interests. Some of the biggest are ones you might guess; but there's a whole host of more unusual – and no less enjoyable! – festivals on offer, just waiting to be joined.
As anyone who has ever been to Dublin will tell you, we’ve got a vibrant nightlife. As the sun sets on the Liffey and darkness sets in, pubs, late bars and nightclubs fill with people looking for a great night out.
Bars and pubs
There are around 772 pubs in Dublin, so you won’t have a hard time finding somewhere to have a jar. (That’s Dublin slang for a pint!)
The city is divided into north and south by the River Liffey. Temple Bar, which is famously associated with Dublin’s nightlife, is located right by the river on the south side.
Here, you’ll find lots of pubs and restaurants lining the cobbled streets. This area is particularly popular with tourists, so many of them serve the likes of Irish coffee and Guinness stew.
To the north, you’ll find Dublin’s O’Connell Street. Off this main thoroughfare, there’s a number of smaller streets that thrive at night. Parnell Street, Abbey Street and Capel Street are all reliable routes for finding a choice of pubs and bars.
If you’re looking for traditional music, there are a wealth of older pubs where you’ll find groups playing a session. There’s Oliver St. John Gogarty’s, The Ha’penny Bridge Inn, The Brazen Head, The Celt, The Cobblestone and Brannigan’s – to name just a few.
On the other hand, if you prefer more modern decor and a choice of cocktails, areas like South William Street, George’s Street, Camden Street and Harcourt Street will suit you better. If you’re looking for a dry night out, the city also has some alcohol-free experiences on offer.
Opening hours and dress codes
Normal trading hours for bars in Dublin will vary depending on what day of the week it is. Monday-Thursday, they open at 10:30 with last orders at 23:30. Friday and Saturday last orders are at 00:30. Then, on Sunday, pubs open at 12:00 and last orders are called at the earlier time of 23:00. You’ll get about 30 minutes to finish up your drink after last orders.
The dress code for Dublin’s pubs and clubs is quite laid back. Jeans and a top are usually just fine. However, in some Dublin clubs, trainers aren’t allowed so be sure to wear shoes just in case you want to stay out late.
It’s also worth noting that the drinking age in Ireland is 18. However, some clubs only let in people over 21 or 25.
If you’re looking for a late night dance, some bars and nightclubs serve drinks up until 02:30 certain nights of the week. For example, there’s The Grand Social, The Living Room and Sin É on the north side, as well as Club M, The Globe, Pygmalion and Lost Lane on the south side.
There are also quite a few late night clubs on Harcourt Street, including Copper Face Jacks, Dicey’s and The Black Door. So this is a good direction to head in if you’re not ready to go home.
Dublin-born icon, Oscar Wilde wrote, "It is absurd to divide people into good and bad. People are either charming or tedious!" If there's one thing that's central to Dubliners, it's the dry wit you'll find here; the tongue-in-cheek, good-hearted humour that makes teasing just as much a sign of the welcome as it is part of the vernacular. The biggest draw to Dublin has to be its people. They’re the reason the city was recently voted in the top 10 friendliest cities in the world; why it has the greatest nightlife; why its art and culture is some of the most influential and vibrant to be found anywhere.
There are plenty of options for getting from A to B in Dublin. It is a fairly compact city, which means walking and cycling are viable options. You can walk from many of the city’s outlying districts to its centre in around 30 or 40 minutes. But the public transport in Dublin is pretty good too. It’s one of the benefits that comes with living in the city. Public transport Getting around Dublin by bus Dublin Bus connects most parts of the city through a network of over 100 routes.