Top 20 Reasons to Celebrate New Year in Dublin
We could give you 2020 reasons to visit Dublin at any time of the year, but for those thinking of coming to celebrate New Year here is our top 20 reasons to get you started… Once you arrive you’ll discover the many other delights this great city has to offer.
1. Steeped in History – Dublin has been home to Celts, Vikings, High Kings, and Normans so Dublin offers something for every type of history buff. Relive the sights and smells of medieval Dublin at Dublina or stroll through the splendour of the many well preserved Georgian squares, parks and streets.
2. Food Flavours – In recent years Dublin has enjoyed an explosion of restaurants, cafés and bars offering food from around the globe including pizzerias, tapas bars, Mexican street food, Thai and many more! Sample some of Ireland’s famed produce such as grass fed beef, artisan farmhouse cheese and fresh seafood.
3. An Irish Welcome – Internationally famed for its warm welcome and the ‘craic’, Dublin is definitely not a city of strangers, as Dubliner W.B. Yeats once said, only friends you haven’t met.
4. EPIC The Irish Emigration Museum – Uncover the dramatic and inspiring stores of the Irish who travelled the world, from early times to modern day. The world’s only fully digital museum features 1500 years of Irish history and relives some of the greatest achievements in music, literature, sport, politics, fashion and science.
5. Wild Lights at Dublin Zoo – A trip to Dublin over New Year’s will allow you to take advantage of the wonderful Wild Lights at Dublin Zoo. Dive into an Ocean of Light, with a cast of illuminated giant silk lanterns celebrating the wonders of the life aquatic. From giant squid to emperor penguins, colossal blue whales and dainty seahorses, Dublin Zoo, once again, will be transformed into a world of illumination with lanterns tailor-made especially for this year’s event.
6. Into the Night – No visit to Dublin is complete without a trip to a local pub. Nestle into a traditional cosy snug in O’Donoghue’s or Doheny & Nesbitt on Baggot Street, or sit back with a cocktail and enjoy some people watching in one of the city’s vibrant chic bars along Dawson Street.
7. Guinness Storehouse – Located in the heart of the St. James’s Gate Brewery, the Guinness Storehouse is Ireland’s most popular tourist attraction. The Storehouse offers an interactive experience that demonstrates the long brewing tradition of Guinness and its place in Ireland’s history. Complete your visit with a pint in the famous rooftop Gravity Bar, which offers an unrivalled 360-degree view over the Dublin cityscape.
8. Magical Museums – There is a wide range of museums and galleries throughout the city, most of which are free admission. The National Gallery of Ireland, displays an impressive collection of Irish art alongside pieces from every major European school of painting. The National History Museum showcases many artefacts from Ireland’s rich archaeological heritage including gold work, bog bodies, Viking treasures and early Christian art.
9. Living Literature – A city of writers, Dublin has a rich past when it comes to storytelling. Visitors can bring this to life with the Talking Statues where 11 of Dublin’s most famous statues have been given the gift of the gab! Simply swipe your smartphone on a nearby plaque and presto, get a call back from James Joyce (written by Roddy Doyle and voiced by Gabriel Byrne), Oscar Wilde (written by John Banville and voiced by Andrew Scott), or Fidelity on the O’Connell Monument (written by Paula Meehan and voiced by Ruth Negga).
10. Scenic Views – Whilst Dublin is a bustling cosmopolitan city you are never too far from stunning countryside and breath-taking sea views. A short journey along the coast will lead you to some quaint seaside villages, where you can enjoy pier side fresh seafood with spectacular views of Dublin Bay. If you’re looking for an exciting recreational activity then venture to the Dublin Mountains – whether you’re interested in a walk, a cross county hike or a bike ride, the trails and forests of the Dublin Mountains has something for all ages!
11. Whiskey Tours – Dublin is home to a number of distilleries including the world-famous Jameson and Teeling whiskeys. Learn all about the ancient art of distilling whilst sampling some of the finest blends. Interactive tours include creating your own blend to take away or a masterclass in cocktail making, so you can wow your friends back home with some delicious serves.
12. Historic Castles – Journey back in time to an era of knights and soldiers, climb up the winding stairs of turrets and feel the history embedded in the cold stone walls of Dublin’s many beautiful castles. From historic Dublin Castle located right in the city centre to the beautiful parkland settings of Malahide Castle, Swords Castle, and Rathfarnham to name just a few.
13. Croke Park – Dublin’s Croke Park is the home of the Gaelic Athletic Association (GAA) and has been at the heart of Irish sporting life for over 100 years. Boasting a capacity for 82,300 people, the stadium hosts interactive tours and a thrilling rooftop walk offering breathtaking panoramic views of Ireland’s vibrant capital from the mountains to the sea.
14. City Streets – The city’s history comes alive through the rich diversity in the streetscapes and architecture of Dublin. From narrow winding cobbled streets through to gracious Georgian houses and old fisherman cottages on Sandymount Bay, visitors can walk their way through centuries of a rich tapestry of history.
15. Traditional Music – Music is embedded in Ireland’s culture and the capital city is no exception. Listening to Irish traditional music is a great way to spend an evening and Dublin is home to a vast selection of pubs that host traditional music sessions. Head to Temple Bar in the city centre or Johnny Foxes in the Dublin Mountains to experience some of Ireland’s finest musicians.
16. Kilmainham Gaol – The former prison, Kilmainham Gaol is now a museum and one of the largest unoccupied jails in Europe. Visitors can learn about the many tragic and historic stories of the Irish revolutionaries, including the leaders of the 1916 Easter Rising, who were imprisoned and executed in the prison.
17. Shopping Haven – Dublin offers a wonderful shopping experience where traditional craft sits alongside couture. With something for every budget and taste, a stroll along Grafton Street is a great way to soak up the city. Rest your legs with a sweet treat and refreshing cup of tea in the historic and beautiful surroundings of Bewley’s Café.
18. Gardens and Parks – Ireland is known for its 40 shades of green and even the capital is a verdant city. The Iveagh Gardens was gifted to the city by the Guinness family in 1939 and St Stephen’s Green boasts four centuries of rich history. The Phoenix Park, home to Dublin Zoo and Áras an Uachtaráin, the official residence and work place of the President of Ireland, is one of the largest enclosed recreational spaces within any European capital city.
19. Glasnevin Cemetery – Glasnevin Cemetery Museum, is both the guardian and storyteller for over 1.5 million people. From the ordinary to the truly extraordinary, these people helped shape the Ireland of today. Visitors can hear all their stories through highly informative and engaging tours of the cemetery. Many of Ireland’s most prominent national figures, including Daniel O’Connell, Michael Collins, Éamon de Valera, Maude Gonne, Constance Markievicz, Brendan Behan, Christy Brown and Luke Kelly of The Dubliners are buried on the grounds.
20. GPO Witness History – This highly immersive and engaging exhibition puts you right inside the GPO during Easter Week in 1916. History will come to life as you experience events from both sides of the conflict and through the eyes of bystanders caught in the crossfire through electronic touch screens, video, audio visual booths, sound and authentic artefacts – many previously unseen.