A Historical past Lover’s Information to Dublin, Eire

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You may know a factor or two about Dublin.

For instance, you may know that it is the capital of Eire and that it is the dwelling of Guinness.

However do you know that Dublin was initially based as a Viking settlement manner again within the 10th century, or that it was at one level the Fifth-largest metropolis in Europe?

Dublin’s historical past is lengthy and engaging, and any customer to the Irish capital can nonetheless expertise loads of it immediately.

Pub in Dublin, Ireland

You may discover loads of guides on the market for what to do in Dublin (with the Guinness Storehouse normally on the high of any record), however I wished to make this information slightly totally different. Listed here are all of the issues I feel it is advisable do and see in Dublin in the event you’re a historical past lover like me.

9 issues to do in Dublin for the historical past lover

1. Dublinia

Let’s begin at the start at Dublinia. This museum at Christ Church has 4 totally different displays, together with one on Viking Dublin and one other about Medieval Dublin. There’s additionally an exhibit on the “historical past hunters” (AKA the archaeologists) who have been accountable for uncovering Dublin’s previous. To get an understanding of Dublin’s early historical past, this is able to be an ideal place to begin.


The museum can be linked to Christ Church Cathedral, which can be price a go to with its 1000+ years of historical past.

2. The Ebook of Kells

Which of my fellow historical past lovers are additionally e-book nerds like me? In that case, then you definately aren’t going to wish to miss the Ebook of Kells exhibition at Trinity Faculty. Trinity Faculty itself is filled with historical past; it is the oldest college in Eire, having been based in 1592 by Queen Elizabeth I. The Ebook of Kells is even older – estimates are that it was created round 800 AD.

Old Library at Trinity College in Dublin

Outdated Library at Trinity Faculty

And simply what’s the Ebook of Kells? It is an an illuminated manuscript (basically an illustrated/embellished e-book) in Latin, containing the 4 Gospels of the New Testomony. It will get its title from the truth that it was give to Trinity Faculty from the Abbey of Kells, and it has been on show there for tons of of years.

Your ticket to see the Ebook of Kells and related exhibit additionally will get you into the Lengthy Room of the Outdated Library at Trinity, which is actually any book-lovers moist dream.

Old Library at Trinity College in Dublin

The Lengthy Room

three. Dublin Citadel

Do you know that Dublin has a fort? (Nicely, I imply, it IS in Eire, so I assume it should not be that shocking!) Dublin Citadel dates all the way in which again to 1204, when it was constructed as a fortress below the orders of King John of England. It is gone via some renovations since that point (after a fireplace within the late 1600s, it was rebuilt as a Georgian Palace, which is what you possibly can see immediately), however was used because the seat of British rule in Eire till 1922.

Dublin Castle

Immediately, the fort is usually a vacationer attraction. You possibly can go to the previous state residences and Gothic Chapel Royal, and in addition see the place they’ve excavated previous the historical past of the present fort into some Viking ruins.

Four. Kilmainham Gaol

Whereas now not used as a jail, Kilmainham Gaol nonetheless stays an essential web site in Dublin. It was in-built 1796 and served as a jail (gaol) for 128 years. Most notably, it is the place most of the leaders of the 1916 Easter Rising (a significant occasion within the marketing campaign for Irish independence) have been imprisoned and later executed by the British.

Kilmainham Gaol in Dublin

Inside Kilmainham

Kilmainham ceased being a jail in 1924, and immediately is a museum run by the Workplace of Public Works. You possibly can take excursions of the previous jail blocks, hear tales concerning the sort of situations the prisoners endured, and study a number of the extra well-known individuals who have been imprisoned there.

And if you wish to study extra concerning the Easter Rising itself, you may wish to go to the GPO Witness Historical past Customer Centre, situated on O’Connell Avenue. The GPO (Normal Publish Workplace) served because the headquarters for the leaders of the Easter Rising.

5. Merrion Sq.

Situated on the south facet of Dublin’s metropolis middle, Merrion Sq. is the place to go in the event you love structure and colourful doorways. The sq. was specified by the mid-1700s (so sure, it is undoubtedly historic!), and its Georgian townhouses at one time housed well-known Irish writers like Oscar Wilde and W. B. Yeats.

Colorful doors in Dublin

Immediately, most of the constructing on Merrion Sq. home workplaces, however you possibly can nonetheless go to benefit from the structure and the general public park in the course of the sq. (the park is the place you could find the statue of Oscar Wilde, too). Merrion Sq. can be near the Pure Historical past Museum and Nationwide Gallery.

Colorful door in Dublin

As a result of you possibly can by no means take too many photographs of colourful doorways.

6. Dublin Writers Museum

Talking of well-known Irish writers, Dublin can be dwelling to the Dublin Writers Museum. The museum itself solely opened in 1991, nevertheless it’s housed in an 18th-century home on Parnell Sq., and celebrates Irish writers and poets who’ve made an essential contribution to literature (and particularly Irish literature).

If this sounds up your alley, you may as well go to the close by James Joyce Middle (honoring one other well-known Irish author), or join a literary pub crawl round Dublin.

7. St. Patrick’s Cathedral or Christ Church Cathedral

In Europe typically, the oldest buildings apart from castles are normally church buildings. That is true in Dublin, too. St. Patrick’s Cathedral, the Nationwide Cathedral of the Church of Eire, was based in 1191 and is each the most important and tallest church within the nation.

Christ Church Cathedral in Dublin

Christ Church Cathedral

Christ Church Cathedral (which I discussed earlier on this put up) is even older.

eight. Jeanie Johnston Tall Ship and Famine Museum

Discovered on Customized Home Quay in Dublin, the Jeanie Johnston Tall Ship is a duplicate of the unique, which made 16 journeys from Eire to North America between 1847 and 1855. Throughout this time, individuals have been fleeing Eire because of famine – 2,500 individuals emigrated on the Jeanie Johnston alone.

Visiting the tall ship features a tour the place you will study concerning the ship, the famine, and the individuals who made the journey to North America. Cool truth: Though sea journey was lower than glamorous in these days, not one single particular person died on a journey with the Jeanie Johnston.

9. The Ha’penny Bridge

Ha'Penny Bridge in Dublin

Ha’Penny Bridge in Dublin

This iron footbridge in-built 1816 was the very first footbridge in Dublin to cross the River Liffey. The bridge was constructed as a substitute for a ferry that used to cross the river, and required the identical toll: a ha’penny (or half penny). Immediately, the bridge is without doubt one of the most photographed sights in Dublin.

BONUS: Historic locations to eat

Dublin has its fair proportion of nice pubs, however if you wish to check out one thing slightly totally different, take a look at one in all these spots:

The Financial institution on Faculty Inexperienced – This restaurant and pub is situated close to Trinity Faculty and is in a constructing that was the Belfast Financial institution (which dates again to 1892). They only gained an award for one of the best pub with meals in Dublin, that means it is each historic AND tasty.

The Church – This pub, restaurant, and music venue was (are you able to guess?) a church! St. Mary’s Church of Eire was constructed within the early 18th century, closing in 1964. Immediately, The Church, opened in 2005, is a premier place to go to in Dublin for meals, music, and enjoyable.

The Church in Dublin

Inside The Church

Historic Dublin excursions

Listed here are a choice of excursions that can assist you discover Dublin’s historical past:

It’s also possible to go to most of the locations listed above at no cost with the Dublin Go (which additionally comes with free airport transfers and a hop-on, hop-off bus tour).

Dublin, Ireland

Historic Inns in Dublin

A lot of Dublin’s resorts have historical past. However in the event you’re searching for a number of the most famously historic locations to remain, you will wish to take a look at:

The Clontarf Citadel Resort – Situated about 10 minutes outdoors of Dublin, it is a Four-star fort resort that is usually rated top-of-the-line in all of Eire. The unique fort right here dates again to 1172, and you will find previous and new blended each within the structure and decor. (Learn opinions on TripAdvisor | Ebook a room right here!)

Schoolhouse Resort – Sure, this boutique resort is in a former schoolhouse! Discovered within the Ballsbridge, the constructing initially housed a college from 1859 via 1969. It was restored in 1997, however retains all of its historic appeal. Inside, every room is called after a well-known Irish author. (Learn opinions on TripAdvisor | Ebook a room right here!)

The Shelbourne – In search of historic luxurious in Dublin? Then take a look at the Shelbourne on St. Stephen’s Inexperienced. The 5-star resort dates again to 1824 and has performed host to well-known company, from diplomats to actors. (Learn opinions on TripAdvisor | Ebook a room right here!)

READ NEXT: 7 Stops You Do not Need to Miss in Eire

The place are my fellow historical past nerds at? What are your different favourite sights in Dublin?


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A guide to Dublin for history lovers


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