Welcome to the bustling and vibrant city of Dublin, where a single day can be filled with an abundance of unforgettable experiences! And that’s exactly what we plan to help you do! In this itinerary, we will guide you through the best way to spend one day in Dublin, soaking in the rich culture, history, and, of course, the warm Irish hospitality. From starting the day with a hearty traditional Irish breakfast to exploring the city’s iconic landmarks like Trinity College (home to the Book of Kells and the Long Room Library), St. Stephen’s Green, the Guinness Storehouse, and Christ Church Cathedral to ending your day with a pint in the lively Temple Bar District, your time in Dublin will certainly be unforgettable. So, let's dive into this whirlwind day of Dublin exploration and discover the magic of the Emerald Isle's capital city. Sláinte!
Check out our “How to Spend One Day in Dublin” video for a closer look at our experience! 👇🏻
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Now let's get into how to spend a day in Dublin!
8:00am: Start your day with a traditional Irish Breakfast
Lemon Jelly Cafe (Millennium Walkway, North City)
Lemon Jelly is a fresh, young cafe located on the busy pedestrian Millenium Walkway in just minutes from Jervis Street shopping center, The Ha'Penny Bridge, Temple Bar, and more. They offer a diverse menu including Coffees & Teas, French Toast, Eggs & Toast, Croissant Sandwiches, sweet & savory Crepes, and of course, Traditional Irish Breakfast. We ordered crepes (one sweet and one savory), a Full Irish Breakfast, a Chai Latte, and a Gingerbread Latte, and really enjoyed everything.
Other Notable Options:
The Bakehouse Dublin (6 Bachelors Walk, North City)
The Stage Door Cafe (Apartment 3, 11 Essex St E, Temple Bar)
Wuff (23 Benburb St, Smithfield, Dublin)
Bittersweet Cafe (Castle Gate, Unit 3 Lord Edward St)
9:00am: Take a walk on the Ha’Penny Bridge (officially the Liffey Bridge)
Built in 1816 and opened to the public in 1817, the Ha'Penny Bridge (officially known as the Liffey Bridge), is one of the oldest cast iron bridges of its kind. Initially, it was a toll bridge, and pedestrians had to pay half a penny (hence the nickname "Ha'Penny") to cross it. The toll was collected until 1919 when it was abolished. In 2001, the bridge underwent significant restoration work to ensure its continued structural integrity. Today, the Ha'Penny Bridge remains a pedestrian-only bridge and is one of Dublin's most beloved landmarks.
Founded in 1592 by Queen Elizabeth I as part of her efforts to establish Protestant education in Ireland, Trinity College is the oldest and one of the most prestigious educational institutions in all of Ireland. The college initially had a strong Anglican and Protestant affiliation and served as a center for religious and intellectual development in Ireland. Over the centuries, Trinity College expanded its curriculum and reputation as it became renowned for its academic excellence, attracting students and faculty from across the world. Trinity College is home to the famous Trinity College Library, which houses the Book of Kells, a beautifully illuminated manuscript gospel book, and the Long Room, a stunning library chamber with a vast collection of rare books and manuscripts. Book your tickets HERE!
11:15am: Take a stroll through St. Stephen’s Green
The ±22-acre St. Stephen's Green is a historic public park located in the heart of Dublin, Ireland that is not only a tranquil oasis in the midst of the bustling city center but also a place steeped in history and culture, making it one of Dublin's most iconic and beloved green spaces. The park dates back to the 17th century when it was enclosed as a private park for the wealthy residents of the surrounding area. In 1880, the park was opened to the public, becoming one of Dublin's first public parks. During the Easter Rising of 1916, St. Stephen's Green was briefly occupied by rebel forces seeking to establish a stronghold in the city. The park and its surroundings witnessed significant historical events during this time. Today, the park hosts various events and activities throughout the year, including concerts, cultural festivals, and outdoor exhibitions making it a must-visit destination for tourists and a cherished space for locals.
12:15pm: Take in Dublin’s Architectural beauty
Christ Church Cathedral (Christchurch Pl, Wood Quay)
Christ Church Cathedral is one of Dublin’s most historic and significant landmarks. It was founded in the early 11th century (estimated 1028) by the Viking King Sitric Silkenbeard, making it one of the oldest buildings in the city. The cathedral has undergone numerous renovations and expansions over the centuries, reflecting various architectural styles including Norman, Gothic, and Romanesque. Christ Church Cathedral is not only a place of worship but also an important historical site having played a central role in Dublin's religious and cultural heritage for nearly a millennium. One of the highlights of the cathedral is its crypt, which is the largest medieval crypt in Ireland and Great Britain. It houses a treasure trove of historical artifacts, including the mummified remains of a cat and a rat, said to symbolize the ongoing conflict between good and evil. In the 19th century, extensive restorations were carried out to bring the cathedral back to its former glory. If you’re interested in history, architecture, and/or religious heritage, then we definitely recommend adding Christ Church Cathedral to your itinerary. Book you tickets HERE!
Other Notable Sights:
Darkey Kelly's (19 Fishamble St, Christchurch Pl, Temple Bar)
Located just across the street from Christ Church Cathedral in the historic Temple Bar district, Darkey Kelly's pub offers a lively and traditional Irish atmosphere. It's a popular spot for locals and tourists alike, known for its friendly ambiance, live music, traditional Irish dishes, and a wide selection of drinks, including traditional Irish whiskeys and beers. We particularly enjoyed the Fish & Chips and Guinness Stew.
Other Notable Options:
Bunsen Temple Bar (22 Essex St E, Temple Bar)
Fish Shop (76 Benburb St, Smithfield)
Mad Egg (Jervis House, 6 Millennium Walkway, North City)
Old Mill Restaurant (14, Temple Bar)
3:00pm: Experience Dublin's Beer and/or Whiskey Culture
Guinness Storehouse (St. James's Gate)
As one of Dublin’s most popular tourist attractions, The Guinness Storehouse offers a fascinating look into the history and brewing process of the world-famous Guinness beer. It is a seven-story interactive experience housed in a converted 19th-century fermentation plant that is shaped like a giant pint of Guinness. Visitors start their journey at the ground floor and work their way up through the seven levels ending at what is the highlight of the experience for many, and that is the Gravity Bar, where visitors can enjoy a complimentary pint of Guinness while taking in panoramic views of Dublin. The Guinness Storehouse is not just a museum; it's an immersive experience that celebrates the beer's rich history and cultural significance in Ireland and around the world. It's a must-visit for beer enthusiasts, history buffs, and anyone interested in learning about this iconic beverage. Book your tickets HERE!
Other Notable Options:
Irish Whiskey Museum (119 Grafton Street)
Old Jameson Distillery (Bow St, Smithfield)
Teeling Whiskey Distillery (13-17 Newmarket, The Liberties)
Pearse Lyons Whiskey Distillery (121-122, James St, The Liberties)
6:00pm: Ice Cream at Murphys Ice Cream (27 Wicklow St)
Murphy's Ice Cream is an Irish staple at this point. It was founded by two brothers, Kieran and Sean Murphy, in Dingle, County Kerry, on the west coast of Ireland, in 2000. The Murphy brothers had a vision to create ice cream using the best locally sourced ingredients and traditional Irish recipes, resulting in a unique and authentic flavor experience. The Dublin location carries forward the same commitment to quality and creativity that made the original Dingle shop a success, and customers visiting the beloved ice cream shop can expect to find a diverse range of flavors, including classics like vanilla and chocolate, alongside more unique options such as Dingle Sea Salt, Irish Coffee, and Irish Brown Bread (which was surprisingly delicious).
6:30pm: Photo op with Molly Malone (Suffolk St)
Molly Malone is a famous bronze statue that depicts a young woman pushing a cart with fish, and it has become an iconic symbol of the city. The history of Molly Malone is a mix of folklore and history. The character of Molly Malone is said to represent a fictional fishmonger who lived in Dublin in the 17th century. The popular song "Molly Malone" (also known as "Cockles and Mussels") tells the story of her tragic life and death. While there is no historical evidence of Molly's existence, her legend has become an integral part of Dublin's culture. When you visit Molly Malone, you may notice that a particular part of her is shinier than the rest. This is due to the fact that somewhere along the way it was said that touching this particular body part would bring good luck. Well… This tradition has stuck with tourists and people now line up to get their chance at good fortune.
6:45pm: Explore the famous Grafton Street
Grafton Street is one of the most famous and bustling streets in Dublin. It's known for its vibrant atmosphere, high-end shops, street performers, and a wide range of entertainment, and dining options making it a must-see for any visitor to Dublin.
O'Neills Pub & Kitchen (2 Suffolk St)
While this is where we went during our visit, I don’t know that we would totally recommend it. We waited for 30 minutes for one beer and over an hour for a single entree (Shepards Pie) that was mediocre. That was just our experience though, so maybe yours will be better if you give it a try. That said, this iconic pub has a rich history dating back to 1885 when it first opened its doors to patrons. Over the years, O'Neill's has become a cherished part of Dublin's cultural fabric, known for its warm hospitality, traditional Irish charm, and, of course, a vast selection of beverages. Its classic Victorian-era architecture, cozy interior, and maze-like layout make for a quintessential Irish pub experience. Visitors can expect to find an extensive menu of traditional Irish dishes, such as hearty stews, savory pies, and, of course, a healthy selection of beers and whiskeys.
Other Notable Options:
The Winding Stair (40 Ormond Quay Lower, North City)
Arthur's Jazz & Blues Pub (28 Thomas St, The Liberties)
J.R. Mahon’s (1-2, Burgh Quay)
The Vintage Kitchen (7 Poolbeg St)
10:00pm: Pub Crawl!
Dublin's nightlife and pub scene is legendary, offering a vibrant and unforgettable experience, and no visit to Dublin would be complete without experiencing it. Whether you're looking for a cozy corner to chat with friends or a lively dance floor to let loose, Dublin's nightlife has something for everyone, ensuring a night you won't soon forget. And if a self-guided pub crawl seems overwhelming, then we definitely recommend trying this guided pub crawl!
The Temple Bar Pub (47-48 Temple Bar)
The Brazen Head Pub (20 Lower Bridge St, Usher's Quay)
The Long Hall (51 South Great George's Street)
O’Donoghue’s Bar (15 Merrion Row)
Palace Bar (21 Fleet St, Temple Bar)
The Norseman (28E, Essex St E, Temple Bar)
McDaid’s (3 Harry St)
And THAT is how you spend one day in Dublin! We hope that this guide has helped you plan your visit to Dublin, and if it has, we hope that you’ll consider following us on Instagram and subscribing to our YouTube Channel for more travel tips!
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