Insider Tips

Things to Do in Dalkey

By Visit Dublin

27th July 2020

A seaside town south of the city, Dalkey’s rich history is front and centre, with a 10th century church and two Norman castles right on the main street, and there's lots of things to do! From the town, it’s a short walk to the harbour, where you can take a boat trip to Dalkey Island, or if you’re feeling adventurous, go abseiling at Killiney Hill. When you settle in for food and drinks, keep an eye out for famous locals. Bono, The Edge, Enya and Van Morrison all live nearby (and Matt Damon even temporarily took up residence here!).

Illustrated Map of Dalkey

Perfect for a day trip from nearby local areas, Dalkey is filled with culture, adventure and a wealth of places to eat and drink. Only 15km from Dublin, it's the perfect place to escape the city and indulge in a little of what the coast has to offer. Explore more and check out these suggestions for spending time in Dalkey where a warm welcome awaits. 

Places to visit

With rowing, kayaking, fishing and island ferries, picturesque Coliemore Harbour is a hub of activity year-round, and offers fantastic views across the bay. If you fancy an adventure, a five-minute boat ride will take you to Dalkey Island, home to a Martello Tower, atmospheric church ruins, plus roaming rabbits and goats.


History comes to life quite literally at Dalkey Castle & Heritage Centre, as costumed actors act out live theatre performances. If literature is your thing, check out the Writer’s Gallery for everything from Beckett to Binchy to Bono. For something a little different, step back in time and enjoy traditional Irish storytelling with tea and cakes in Biddy’s Cottage.

Food and drink

You won’t go hungry during your visit, as there are plenty of food and drink options available in this charming village. Follow the waft of hot scones and freshly-brewed coffee to the Tramyard Café, and take a seat in this outdoor, yet indoor café. Corner Note serves up delicious, locally-sourced produce. On cold days, warm up by the fire, while on summer evenings, we recommend you sit outside and soak up the sun.

Nearby Select Stores is an award-winning wholefood shop, juice bar and café. If you fancy something a bit heartier though, head along to Finnegan’s. A favourite spot of both Bono and the late, great Maeve Binchy (regulars still proudly point out her favourite table), it’s a tasty lunch spot with an extensive wine menu. You’ll find craft beers and a selection of uncomplicated food done well at The Magpie Inn.

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