Insider Tips

Things to Do in Dún Laoghaire

By Visit Dublin

27th July 2020

Brightly painted villas, palm trees and townland parks greet visitors to Dún Laoghaire, an elegant port town just 13km from Dublin’s city centre. Popular with holiday makers since Victorian times, its appeal is timeless. Try your hand at sailing, take a dip in the sea, visit a museum, and top it all off with a 99 ice-cream cone on the pier.

Get started with our illustrated map and find the best things to do in Dún Laoghaire...

The People’s ParkCartoon map of Dun Laoghaire

Great walks

Breathe in the sea air and watch the world go by as you stroll along Dún Laoghaire’s mile-long East Pier Walk. You’ll pass the beautiful Victorian bandstand as fishing boats and yachts sail quietly in and out of the harbour. Another recommended spot is The People’s Park. Created as a formal Victorian garden, this scenic space is enclosed by wrought iron railings, inside of which you’ll find beautifully landscaped lawns and bright flowers. Visit on a Sunday to sample the delights of Dún Laoghaire’s food and craft market.

Things to do

You’ll be spoiled for choice when it comes to planning your Dún Laoghaire day trips. Anyone with even a passing interest in seafaring history should head along to the National Maritime Museum of Ireland. A delightful space in a beautiful building, learn about the trials and tribulations of sailors and explorers who navigated the Irish Sea and the Atlantic Ocean.

Dún Laoghaire is home to the famous Forty Foot swimming spot tucked in behind the James Joyce Tower and Museum – immortalised by its appearance in the opening scenes of the novel Ulysses. Dún Laoghaire is also known for its host of quirky shops and boutiques. While away an hour or two in Naughton’s Booksellers, a veritable literary treasure trove that’s home to over 20,000 second-hand, antiquarian and rare books.

Places to eat

Originally a fish shop in the 1940s, the folks at family-run Caviston’s Food Emporium know a thing or two about good seafood. If you fancy washing down your fresher-than-fresh seafood with a few local craft brews, the Purty Kitchen is the place to go.

Given Dún Laoghaire’s stunning surroundings, it can be just as fun to get your food to go. Order a classic fresh fish and chip combo at Fish Shack by Ouzos, or take their lobster shrimp roll to the pier wall and enjoy. Just don’t forget dessert! Often cited as Dublin’s best ice-cream, Teddy’s Ice Cream has been delighting taste buds at the Dún Laoghaire East Pier for over 50 years.

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