Insider Tips

Things to Do in Howth

By Visit Dublin

24th April 2021

Below the hilly headland at the northern boundary of Dublin Bay lies the small fishing village of Howth. There are so many things to do hereabouts – an angler’s dream, cod and ray are commonly caught here as fishing trawlers weave in and out of the harbour. All the while, restaurants along the seafront serve up the catch of the day to hungry hikers fresh off the Howth Head walk...


Great walks

From the harbour to Howth Head, there’s something for every level of walker in this fishing village. Try the Bog of Frogs Loop for scenic views of the cliffs, Lambay Island and the Baily Lighthouse — there are four route options, so look out for signs displaying directions. If you'd like to make the most of a local guide, Shane's Howth Adventures offer a variety of touring options through this beautiful landscape.

For something a bit gentler, take a stroll down the pier. From here you can take in the views of Ireland’s Eye, a beautiful island that’s just a 15-minute boat ride away. Explore its long sandy beach, take in breath-taking views of Dublin Bay, go bird-watching, see a Martello Tower up close or even try your hand at fishing.

Things to do

Open on weekends and Bank Holidays, Howth Market is home to an array of Irish crafts, delicate handmade jewellery, and vintage antiques; perfect for gift shopping. While you’re there, be sure to sample the wide selection of organic foods on offer, like olives, cheeses, nuts and of course, delicious chocolate and cupcakes. Or if you’re feeling peckish grab a burger, stir-fry or gooey pastrami melt sandwich for a picnic.

Less than a ten-minute walk from the market, you’ll find Howth Castle and Grounds. Immerse yourself in history and take in the beautiful surrounding gardens, which are home to a ten-metre high hedge and the ruins of St Mary’s Abbey. Also in the castle, you’ll find restored Georgian kitchens, where cookery school The Kitchen in the Castle host half-day and evening classes.

In the evenings, pubs like The Abbey Tavern and The Bloody Stream host live music, dancing and comedy events.

Take in the picturesque scenery and various landmarks along the way with a relaxing 75 minute Dublin Bay Cruise or take a boat trip with Ireland's Eye Ferries and either see how many seals and native sea birds you can spot or stop off on the island to explore further.

Places to eat

Seafood, of course, takes centre stage in the many pubs and restaurants of Howth. Try The Brass Monkey for seafood tapas and wine, or head to the nearby Oar House Fish Restaurant, where food is so fresh, it’s still swimming in a glass tank when you arrive! At the very end of the pier you'll find Aqua, another seafood specialist offering stunning views of Ireland's Eye while you dine in style. 

But before you commit to a location, why not take a walk along the pier and down the town centre and check out the many menus on offer? If seafood isn’t your thing, the aforementioned Abbey Tavern, where many music and comedy legends started their careers performing, has plenty of hearty beef and lamb dishes. Or head to the quirky Dog House & Blue's Tea Rooms for pizza fresh from the wood-fire stove. They’ve a delicious selection of teas on offer too and with their cosy couch set-up, you won’t want to leave.

For tasty take-out fish and chips, stop by Beshoffs, a much-loved Dublin institution, or stop by the van at the West Pier harbour (we recommend the calamari). Afterwards, stroll along the seafront for an ice-cream and take it down the pier. The perfect combo!

Of course, great food doesn’t begin and end here. There’s lots more to be explored in Howth — one visit, and you'll be hooked...

Visit Dublin

Visit Dublin | Dublin's Official Tourism Site

Tweet us @visitdublin