For a small city, Dublin city centre is packed with history and art found within its museums and galleries and many offer free entry (special exhibitions may incur a fee) so there is no excuse not to take a trip to one of them at some stage. For a hit of culture there are plenty of ideas below, ranked in no particular order.
National Museum of Ireland – Archaeology
Kildare Street. Free admission.
Step as far back in time as 7,000 BC in Ireland’s largest museum and explore some of Ireland’s most famous artefacts including the Ardagh Chalice and the Tara Brooch. As well as stunning ancient gold jewellery and mummies you will enjoy exploring Christian, Viking, Medieval and Ancient Egypt artefacts to name but a few..
National Museum of Ireland – Natural History
Merrion Street. Free admission.
With a goal to educate and inspire minds, this ‘Dead Zoo’ is home to two million species (insects are very compact to display!) all living peacefully under in this building. It’s like the zoo except that all the animals are deceased! There is a fantastic collection of stuffed beasts that you can get up close to.
The Jeanie Johnson
Custom House Quay. Adult €11. Child €6.
Modelled on a 19th century emigrant ship, The Jeanie Johnston invites passengers on board to experience the Irish Famine first hand. A must for those looking to explore a museum with a difference! Added bonus; Epic Museum is across the road – two birds with one stone spring to mind!!
Epic: The Irish Immigration Museum
Dublin Docklands. Adult €16.50. Child €8. Family tickets available.
Voted as Europe’s Leading Tourist Attraction in 2019 beating the Eiffel Tower, Buckingham Palace and the Roman Colosseum, this state-of-the-art interactive experience brings to life the history of the Irish diaspora and emigration to other countries.
Dublin Writers Museum
Situated across two floors in a magnificent 18th century mansion this museum showcases the great literary heroes of Ireland, Yeats, Wilde, Beckett, Joyce to name but a few. Audio guides and tours are available.
Irish Whiskey Museum
Grafton Street (across from Trinity Gates). Adult tickets from €16.
Be guided through four unique rooms representing a different era of Irish whiskey in Ireland and learn about the history of whiskey in Ireland. The tour ends in the tasting room where you will become a whiskey connoisseur sampling different blends. Being independent of all whiskey distilleries ensures a vast array of whiskies are available to taste.
National Gallery of Ireland
Merrion Square West. Free admission
It’s easy to understand how this gallery was nominated for European Museum of the Year 2018 with its busy exhibition programme with many talks, tours and events for the public to enjoy. The Gallery Café near the entrance and definitely worth a stop to recharge the batteries before leaving.
Chester Beatty Library
Dublin Castle. Free admission with donations welcome.
Once the private library of Sir Alfred Chester Beatty (1875 – 1968), today this engaging and welcoming space is home to manuscripts, rare books, and other treasures from Europe, the Middle East, North Africa and Asia. It is described as ‘not just the best museum in Ireland but one of the best in Europe’ by the Lonely Planet travel guide.
Science Gallery Dublin
Pearse Street. Free.
With a mission to “to ignite creativity and discover where science and art collide and to catalyse the development of the world's leading network for involving, inspiring, and transforming curious minds through science” you can guarantee this gallery will be anything but boring! Perfect for creative minds of all ages.