Insider Tips

16 Spots to Love Along the Dublin Discovery Trails

By Visit Dublin

23rd March 2018

These pics will make you want to explore Dublin instantly! One of the best things to do while in Dublin is explore the city on foot. Described by National Geographic Traveller Magazine as having a 'friendly village vibe', take in the city at your own pace with a self-guided app – Dublin Discovery Trails.

Choose from eight different trails based on your interests – and to help you along, we’ve compiled a list of 16 gorgeous locations you should not miss. Some might even surprise you!

Bench disappearing into 'The Hungry Tree'

1. The Hungry Tree

Approach at your peril! Discover Dublin's secret garden as you make your way along the Dublin Northside 1 Trail.

Red Brick Exterior of George's Arcade

2. George's Street Arcade

One of the most striking things you’ll notice while strolling through Dublin’s charming streets is the diverse range of design and architecture on show. George’s Street Arcade is on The Real Dublin Trail.

Graves in Glasnevin Cemetary

3. Glasnevin Cemetery

Embrace the tranquillity of Glasnevin Cemetery while paying your respects to some of Ireland’s most famous Irish revolutionaries and authors. Stop off on your Dublin Northside 2 Discovery Trail.

Neon blue fibre optic installation at EPIC Museum

4. EPIC  The Irish Emigration Museum

As you come near the end of Dublin Northside 1 Trail, you’ll make your way back towards the River Liffey. Learn about Dublin’s docklands and finish the trail with stories of Irish emigrants at the fascinating EPIC The Irish Emigration Museum.

GPO Ceiling details

5. General Post Office(GPO)

It's amazing what you can discover when you look up! The General Post Office (GPO) still bears bullet marks from the 1916 Easter Rising. Learn more about this on the Rebellion Tour.

View of trees in St Stephen's Green park

6. St Stephen's Green

The lush green oasis of St. Stephen’s Green is a hugely popular haunt located at the very top of the Grafton Street shopping district. The park is lined with nods to the past in the form of several statues of famous figures. Explore them on the Empire Walking Trail.

Powerscourt Town Centre exterior

7. Powerscourt

Showcasing the juxtaposition of tradition and modernity in our vibrant city, you’ll find the Powerscourt Townhouse on The Real Dublin Trail. A stunning Georgian building that dates back to 1774; this elegant space is home to boutique fashion houses, antique stores and Irish design shops, and is well worth a visit.

View of statues and buildings from the Garden of Remembrance

8. Garden of Remembrance

The Dubline Trail in our free Discovery Trails app runs through the heart of the city, connecting the people, places and stories of Dublin. In the tranquil Garden of Remembrance, there’s a commemorative sculpture dedicated to all those who gave their lives in the name of Irish freedom.

Kilmainham Gaol exterior

9. Kilmainham Gaol

To Kilmainham Gaol [Jail] next, one of the most compelling supporting characters in the Echoes of War Trail. Over a nine-day period in May of 1916, 14 revolutionaries were executed by firing squad at the jail, including Patrick Pearse, Seán Heuston, Eamonn Ceannt, Sean MacDiarmada and James Connolly.

Croke Park GAA emblem

10. Croke Park Gaa Stadium

Croke Park has been at the heart of Irish sporting and cultural life for over 100 years. The iconic stadium features stadium tours, a skyline tour, and a state-of-the-art interactive visitor experience – and not forgetting the roar of excitement on match days! All this can be found on the Dublin Northside 2 Trail.

Trinity College and Bank of Ireland

11. Bank of Ireland building

Did you know that the famous Bank of Ireland building actually began life in 1735 as Ireland’s parliament? At this stop on the Story of Dublin Trail you’ll discover some of the political designs that have gone on here in the past, and learn why College Green has long been one of Dublin’s great meeting points!

Exterior of National College of Art and Design

12. The National College of Art & Design

A stroll through the Liberties as part of The Dubline walking trail offers an authentic slice of ‘old Dublin’. Along the way you’ll encounter the National College of Art & Design.

St Audeon's Church

13. St Audeon's Church

Dublin’s oldest surviving medieval church, St Audeon's Church was built in the late 12th century. If you feel in need of some luck, give the ancient touching stone a rub while on the Story of Dublin Walking Trail.

Royal College of Surgeons exterior

14. Royal College of Surgeons

The Rebellion Trail offers you an insight into the Easter Rising. As you stroll through the leafy St Stephen's Green, you’ll learn how the rebels took cover from British soldiers in trenches they’d dug, before retreating to the nearby Royal College of Surgeons.

Iveagh Trust plaque

15. Iveagh Buildings

The Empire Trail takes you on a fascinating journey through Dublin during the 18th and 19th centuries. Along the way you’ll encounter some very striking five-storey red-brick buildings; The Iveagh Trust Buildings built by Sir Edward Guinness. Learn more about his story in our free Discovery Trails App.

Heuston Station exterior

16. Heuston Station

The ‘Echoes of War’ walking trail begins at Heuston Station. Striking in design, the entrance to the building boasts a series of Corinthian columns, an elegant nod to classic Greek art and architecture.

If you’ve been inspired by these gorgeous locations, then we suggest you download The Dublin Discovery Trails App! You can explore the city using a series of engaging audio guides and interpretive panels. Each trail shows a different side to historic Dublin, from its glorious Viking origins to the havoc caused by the 1916 Easter Rising.

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