Insider Tips

Dublin Date Ideas

By Visit Dublin

14th February 2021

​Let's face it, anyone can buy a bunch of flowers, suck up to their sweetie with a box of chocolates or send a cute message. But why not level up your relationship by going that extra mile with some of our best Dublin date ideas and the most romantic things to do in the city? Make every day Valentine's Day (all year round)...

Hop on a bicycle built for two!

Could there be anything more romantic than cycling on a bicycle made for two? Put an original spin on dating with Phoenix Park Bikes and rent out a tandem to explore the magnificent park. The Phoenix Park is five times the size of London’s Hyde Park, double the size of New York’s Central Park and offers endless locations for a private picnic in perfect peace, while wild fallow deer graze close by. Or you could lock up the bike and stroll the ornamental gardens, meander across broad expanses of grassland or walk through woods of oak, beech, pine, chestnut and lime.

The exterior of St Patrick's Cathedral with pink flowers to the foreground

Delight in Dublin's most romantic historic spots

If you like to mix history and romantic tales, Dublin has all sorts of weird and wonderful treasures to visit.
 
Where better to start a pilgrimage to love than with a visit to St Valentine, the patron saint of lovers? Not many people know it but the saint’s remains are found at the Carmelite Church on Whitefriar Street, thanks to a gift by Pope Gregory XVI in 1836. If you pay a visit, you’ll find that the Whitefriar Street shrine to St Valentine has been, and continues to be, a place for those celebrating love, and special ‘blessing of the rings’ ceremonies for couples intending to marry are held here on St Valentine’s Day.
 
Another spot you should visit is stunning St Patrick’s Cathedral, where Dean Jonathan Swift is buried. More well-known for works like Gulliver’s Travels, Swift is also famous for his love poems composed for his beloved Stella. Stella was the name Swift gave to Esther Johnson whom he tutored, and his relationship with her continues to be one of controversy — some say the pair were secretly married. Long dead now, they rest side-by-side in St Patrick’s.

Stone angel fountain at the Iveagh Gardens

Take a sentimental journey

Love Lane in Temple Bar (beside the Olympia Theatre) is a narrow alleyway dedicated to devotion! Made up of a combination of handmade decorated tiles and stenciled spray-painted sections, the various tiles contain quotes about love inspired by musical and poetic verse, and feature original romantic thoughts from the people of Dublin. The perfect place to accidentally stumble upon on any date!
 
Another alternative is the beautiful Iveagh Gardens, among the finest and least known of Dublin's green spaces, this gem is often referred to as the ‘hidden garden’. Located south of St Stephen's Green between Harcourt Street and Earlsfort Terrace, the Iveagh Gardens feel far removed from the city's noise and bustle. They were designed by Ninian Niven in 1863 and include a rustic grotto, cascade, fountains, maze, rosarium, archery grounds, wilderness and woodlands. Perfect for that secluded stroll!

Couple walking on Howth Head with view of Dublin Bay behind them

Plan a getaway on Dublin Bay

If your perfect date is one that embraces life’s simple pleasures, Howth is the ideal spot. The minute you reach this charming seaside town with its stunning harbour, hilly streets and colourful fleet of sailing and fishing boats, that cosy loving feeling will abound! You’ll love a sea kayaking trip with Shearwater Kayaking; or take a Dublin Bay Cruise and uncover the hidden treasures of the North Dublin coast – the bird life, seals, hidden coves and inlets, rocky outcrops and secluded beaches.
 
As you’re by the seaside, for a treat, why not indulge yourself at one of Howth’s famous seafood restaurants like The Oar HouseAqua or King Sitric. If your budget doesn’t stretch that far, not to worry. You can still dine in style on excellent fish and chips on the harbour wall opposite Beshoff’s. It’s true you know that food always tastes better in the fresh air!

Close-up of plate of mussels at the Winding Stair

Snuggle up in a Dublin pub

With hundreds of pubs in the capital, you’ll have no problem finding a cosy table to snuggle up at. Check out the lavish Café en Seine – and enjoy the Art Nouveau surroundings while you sip on an elegant cocktail from their wide selection.

Or step back in time to the vintage chic, speakeasy style atmosphere of the Vintage Cocktail Club and spend the evening savouring some of Dublin’s finest mixed drinks and feel as great as Gatsby himself. 

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