9 of the Most Instagrammable Places in Dublin
Are you headed to Dublin on your next adventure? Easily navigated by scanning the cathedral skyline and winding River Liffey, the Irish capital is a booming hub for nightlife and day tours alike. Stop for a roadside chicken burger and a pint on Grafton Street on your way to the National Museum or Dublin Castle, or simply enjoy any decent weather that comes your way. However you like to explore new cities, Dublin is sure to accommodate any taste during your trip to the Emerald Isle.
1. Guinness Storehouse
Beer enthusiasts shouldn’t miss a stop to the Guinness Storehouse, located in the storied St. James Gate Brewery. For something that is so quintessentially Irish, it may come as a surprise that the storehouse was built in the style of the Chicago School of Architecture. Today, its seven stories serve as a full-tilt visitor immersion, delving into the 250 years of history behind this favorite Irish brew. Upgrade your package to include pint-pouring lessons at Guinness Academy and end your trip at Gravity Bar, which boasts endless panoramic views and a well-deserved complimentary pint. Perfection.
2. Temple Bar
While The Temple Bar is a stand-alone bar within the Temple Bar area, Temple Bar actually refers to an entire bustling region on the south bank of the Liffey. Only a few blocks strong, Temple Bar packs in an impressive amount galleries, pubs, events, and boutiques and is celebrated as Dublin’s cultural center. For travelers who are excited about Dublin’s nightlife, Temple Bar is the perfect district to explore. Don’t forget to check out traditional Irish fare and deep Trinity College roots at the area’s namesake, The Temple Bar brewpub. Do yourself (and your followers) a favor by strolling the streets of Temple Bar.
3. The Bank at College Green
If you and your travel buddies are looking for something with an upscale menu but a relaxing atmosphere that is typical of Irish pubs, definitely check out The Bank. With a delicately arched ceiling held up by columns and adorned by indoor palms and statues, it’s difficult to take a bad photo at this restaurant. In 2017, The Bank was voted the Best Pub for Food in Dublin and it’s no question why; its extensive farm-to-table menu and weekend brunch specials attract the refined tastes of travelers and locals alike. With a wide variety of flavors as well as prices, your Instagram-worthy dish can easily cater to any travel budget.
4. Trinity College Library
Visitors often remark that this library looks like it came straight from a J.K. Rowling novel, but Trinity College Library was founded several centuries before any of us knew about Hogwarts. Visit the library and the Book of Kells, the library’s oldest manuscript, then head into one of the most photographed places in the library: The Long Room. Consistent with its name, The Long Room is a lengthy corridor characterized by sweeping arches, protecting 200,000 of the oldest books in the oaken bookshelves. The library is open for visitors seven days a week and is certainly worth a snap.
5. St. Stephen's Green
If you need a picnic spot or a break from Dublin’s gridlocked traffic during rush hour, head to St. Stephen’s Green. This Victorian-style park boasts 22 acres of shrubbery, walking paths, waterways, a playground, and a bandstand. All city-centre bus routes can get you to St. Stephen’s Green, and you can request a month in advance a guided tour of the green if you wish. While the foliage itself is worth several snaps, the adjacent St. Stephen’s Green Shopping Center is incredibly photogenic with its natural light and gigantic clock inside. Whether the weather is better suited for an outdoor afternoon in the park or a shopping day inside, the St. Stephen’s Green area is sure to impress you and your followers.
6. St. Patrick's Cathedral
A true Dublin icon, St. Patrick’s Cathedral stoically stands above the Dublin skyline. Whether you admire the cathedral from the outside or the inside, the 900-year history of St. Patrick’s is evident in each brick and decoration. Note that the cathedral’s opening hours vary over the summer and winter seasons, so make sure you check before you go. While admission to the cathedral consists of a small fee, St. Patrick’s hosts several free events and concerts including performances from the Cathedral Choristers — just make sure you register for any concerts that you would like to see. As the largest and tallest church in Ireland, this archetypical structure is a necessary stop for stunning photos and a true Dublin experience.
7. Ha'penny Bridge
Ha’penny Bridge, referring to the original crossing toll, was the only pedestrian bridge over the Liffey for 183 years. Today, of course, the bridge is toll-free and one of a network of bridges across the Liffey, but it continues to carry over 30,000 pedestrians each day. Although the bridge is over 200 years old and has been recently renovated, about 85% of the structure is still the original metal… not including the 300 kilograms of padlocks that were necessarily removed in 2013. See for yourself why the locals used to call it the “Triangle Bridge,” and catch a stunning view of the Liffey and the Dublin skyline — especially at night.
8. Georgian Quarter
Nobody in Dublin loves vibrant color more than Dubliners in the Georgian Quarter. Named for the 20th century writer George Moore, the Georgian quarter is characterized by brightly painted doorways that, some say, continue in homage to Moore’s original green door. Because of a wave of architectural regulation in the 18th and 19th centuries that required all homes to look identical, the 20th century door-painting boom allowed residents to characterize their own home, both for themselves and for their neighbors. The doors became an attraction nearly 50 years ago, and the craze continues today. Pop over to St. Stephen’s Green or Fitzwilliam Square to begin your hunt for Dublin’s most famous doorways.
9. Ballymaloe House
When you’ve had your fill of Dublin sights, head down to East Cork and check out the Ballymaloe House. This historic country home was opened to the public in 1964 as a restaurant and is available today as a cozy guest house. Take advantage of locally sourced ingredients and crafts from local artisans, then enjoy a view of the ivy-covered walls as you take a stroll around the gardens. As one of Condè Nast Traveler’s 2015 Gold List, Ballymaloe House is an ideal place to stay, dine, or simply enjoy the Irish countryside.
Feature photo of the Long Room in the Trinity College Library, the largest library in Ireland in Dublin, Ireland. (Photo by Vincent Isore/IP3/Getty Image)