Insider Tips

LGBTQ Guide to Dublin

By Visit Dublin

28th October 2019

Dublin is famous for its welcoming, inclusive vibe and its thriving LGBTQ scene is no exception; you'll find it full of colour, character and fun. More than ever before, since Ireland voted to become the first country to pass the same-sex marriage referendum in 2015, Dublin has come into its own as an emerging European gay capital. With the celebration of this monumental day still visible throughout the city, discover where to go and what not to miss with our guide to LGBTQ Dublin...

Map of Dublin with highlighted LGBT locations

What to see

Oscar Wilde is rightly regarded as one of Dublin’s most famous literary figures. A trip to the city wouldn’t be complete without visiting the writer’s memorial statue in Merrion Square Park, right across the street from Wilde’s childhood home on this beautiful Georgian square.

Nearby, if you’re interested in history The Irish Queer Archive at the National Library of Ireland holds the most comprehensive collection of material relating to LGBTQ history and literature in the country. A short stroll away, visit the stunning Dublin Castle buildings and courtyard, a beautiful and historic landmark where huge crowds gathered in May 2015 to witness the declaration of the Marriage Equality referendum result. Here you’ll find vast castle grounds and gardens; museums including the Chester Beatty (with its diverse collections from across Asia, the Middle East, North Africa and Europe); and even the odd Hollywood star – shows such as Penny Dreadful and The Tudors have been filmed here in recent years.

On the city’s north side, check out Outhouse on Capel Street, a not-for-profit LGBTQ community and resource centre which acts as a lively cultural hub with theatre space and events. The building also houses a newly refurbished library stocked with classic LGBTQ literature. Should you wish to explore the capital’s illustrious literary tradition a little more, the Dublin Writers Museum is the perfect place to spend an afternoon. Learn about writers such as Oscar Wilde, James Joyce and Brendan Behan and read about their impact on international literature, as well as finding out about their favourite haunts.

What’s on

Planning your trip to Dublin around some of the city’s numerous gay events is a great way to catch the city at its best. A 10-day festival culminating in the colourful Pride Parade, Dublin LGBTQ Pride is the city’s biggest street celebration next to the St. Patrick’s Festival, and takes place at the end of June each year. The 2019 festival will take place from June 20–30, with the Pride Parade on Saturday, June 29. Celebrations will be in full swing at the Pride Village in Merrion Square; just one of over 15 events that gave the festival its robust character.

Other events include the GAZE International LGBT Film Festival during the August Bank Holiday weekend, the International Dublin Gay Theatre Festival that takes place across the city in May and the Bear Féile weekend in March.

For those seeking outdoor adventure and activities, Out and About is Dublin’s lesbian and gay hillwalking group who take regular excursions to the Wicklow Mountains where you can enjoy unrivalled views of the city. Out2Tennis, meanwhile, is Ireland’s gay tennis network who organise social events and tournaments.

Going out

Dublin’s best gay bars and clubs are focused around the city centre and there’s somewhere great for every mood. Ireland’s oldest and most famous gay club is The George on South Great George’s Street. Open seven nights a week, this lively establishment boasts the best in DJs and drag artists, while Shirley Temple Bar’s bingo on Sunday nights has become a Dublin institution.

Elsewhere, the nearby MOTHER club attracts hipsters and club kids with its synth and disco soundtrack. Across the river, Panti Bar on Capel Street hosts comedy and drag. It's a prime location to spot unofficial ‘Queen of Ireland’ (and national treasure) Panti Bliss herself.

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