Winter in Dublin is not as harsh as it may seem and in those months there are certain particularities that make it an interesting time to visit the city. In this post I will give you 10 arguments, with 10 things to see and do in Dublin that will make you realize that it is worth visiting Dublin in winter.
Irish pubs become the perfect refuge from the cold and there are a variety of festivals and activities that only take place in the winter months. All this with the added bonus that it is low tourist season, prices are lower and the city is much quieter. Below I show you the best plans to travel to Dublin in winter.
1. The Irish breakfast is the best way to warm up.
Irish gastronomy focuses a lot on hearty and hot dishes to fight the cold and booking a gastronomic tour is always a good plan. In addition, the best thing to do on a winter day in Dublin is to start the day with the typical Irish breakfast.
The ingredients of this complete breakfast are bacon, fried eggs, tomatoes, fried mushrooms, beans with tomato sauce, toast, and sausages. A unique and obligatory gastronomic experience in the Irish winter.
It is usually accompanied by an Irish coffee. It is not an ordinary coffee, since it is a mixture of Irish whiskey, sugar and coffee covered with cream especially designed to combat the cold. In most cafes and restaurants in the city serve this perfect dish to start a day in Dublin in winter.
2. Visit the distilleries and Guinness Storehouse in Dublin
Visiting Dublin's distilleries and the Guinness Storehouse is recommended all year round but especially in winter. First because it is a good way to protect yourself from the cold and secondly because Irish whiskey and beer, in its right measure, are ideal to warm up.
Booking a visit to the Jameson distillery is an excellent option to warm up because not only will you have a tour of its facilities, but you will also be able to taste its products.
For its part, the Guinness Storehouse offers a very interesting experience, with a visit to its facilities where you will learn the history of the brand and the brewing process of its beer, to crown the tour with a Guinness beer tasting in the Gravity bar with panoramic views of the city.
3. The best winter retreat: Temple Bar Pubs
After a winter day in Dublin, the best thing you can do to get rid of the cold is to visit the legendary Irish pubs of the city. Their atmosphere, music and drinks will surely captivate you and make you forget about the cold and damp. The pubs are also good places to taste the local gastronomy.
If you want to know which are the best pubs in Dublin just click on this link where you will discover the 10 best pubs in the city of Dublin. Most of them in the Temple Bar area.
4. Enjoy the Irish music at Tradfest
Tradfest is the traditional Irish music festival par excellence. It takes place every year at the end of January and turns the streets of Dublin into a gigantic concert hall.
On the days that the festival takes place, the pubs are filled with concerts of folk and traditional music of Ireland, the streets are filled with buskers and even places like St. Patrick's Cathedral and Trinity College host performances.
The history of Ireland and Dublin are closely linked to music, so the Tradfest festival or attend a show of traditional music and dance is a unique opportunity to know the city through one of the hallmarks of the country's culture.
5. Christmas and Boxing Day in Dublin
Christmas is Dublin's main winter holiday. In the Irish capital is lived with special joy and there are a variety of activities unique to these dates. Beyond the typical Christmas markets or lighting, which attract thousands of visitors and you can enjoy taking a guided tour of Dublin, there are other special attractions and activities.
One of the greatest traditions linked to Christmas in Dublin is to celebrate the arrival of Santa Claus with a swim in the cold waters of Forty Foot, Guillamene Cove or the saltwater pool of Portnahapple in Portstewart.
But if cold water dips aren't your thing, Boxing Day is also celebrated on December 26. On this special date, charity events and markets are held to help the underprivileged. It's quite an experience to experience Christmas as they do in Dublin.
6. Torches to welcome in the new year
The New Year in Dublin deserves a separate mention, as the capital of Ireland celebrates the entry of a new year with a three-day festival.
During these days there is the New Year's Eve Procession of Light, a torchlight procession that ends at Dublin Castle, the Liffey Lights Midnight Moment, a light show over the sky and several other festivities unique to these days.
Culture and art are also protagonists in the last days of the year and through the Love Dublin program there are special tours and exhibitions. There is also the Discovery Trail that offers tourists the opportunity to know the 20 main tourist attractions through a special tour. As you can see in Dublin they like to say goodbye to the year in style.
7. Winter Sale in Grafton Street
Winter is the time of the biggest sales of the year. Black Friday at the end of November or the Christmas and post-Christmas sales encourage locals and tourists to take a stroll through the stores. In Dublin, Grafton Street becomes the hub of commerce in winter.
This pedestrian street, located in the center, is the main artery of Dublin and it concentrates the best stores with the best brands and all kinds of stores. Shopping in Grafton Street is one of the favorite activities of Dubliners and also a very attractive option for those who travel to the city in winter.
8. Nature and winter are not incompatible
One of the most characteristic things about Ireland is its green and beautiful landscapes. In the surroundings of Dublin you can also enjoy them and not because it is winter it is a bad thing.
In fact, since winter is a less rainy season than others and the green is more present it is a good time to enjoy nature. You just need a good coat.
Near Dublin there are many hiking trails through the nearby mountains and parks like the Phoenix where deer live and is the largest urban park in Europe. From Dublin it is also feasible to book day trips to visit spectacular scenery such as the Cliffs of Moher, near Galway.
9. Museums and places to take shelter from the cold
There are days when fighting the cold and wet weather becomes harder and more difficult. On those days it is best to take shelter in the sights under cover.
Apart from the distilleries and the Guinness Storehouse, some of the best sights in Dublin are:
- The historic Kilmainham Gaol, Europe's largest disused prison.
- Trinity College, one of the most prestigious universities in Europe and whose library is one of the most beautiful you can see.
Also the museums of the city are highly recommended for this mission. The National Museum of Archaeology, the Museum of Decorative Arts and History or Modern Art are some examples of what we can find in Dublin. Many of them also have free admission or are included in the always recommended Dublin All-Inclusive Pass, book it in advance and don't worry!
10. Winter is Coming: Game of Thrones Tour from Dublin
Ireland's landscapes were the backdrop for much of the famous Game of Thrones series. Although Dublin is not where the series was filmed, the city is the starting point for several tours of the landscapes and scenery featured in the Game of Thrones series.
Landscapes such as Tollymore Forest Park, where the soldiers of the Night's Watch rest, Inch Abbey where several episodes of the first season were filmed or Ward's Castle, which serves as a wintering ground.
These and other scenarios can be visited on a round trip the same day departing from Dublin. What better way to experience winter as they did in the great saga of Game of Thrones?
Temperatures in Dublin in winter
Winter in Dublin is milder than its geographical location might suggest. From December to February the average temperatures range between 2º and 8º and frost and heavy snowfalls are not common. The main drawback is the humidity, which makes the wind chill much colder than what the thermometers show.
In favor, the winter months are much less rainy than during the summer and the rest of the seasons. As you can see, Dublin's winter is much milder than you might think.
Tourist affluence and prices in Dublin in winter
The cold is always a barrier to travel for many people. In Dublin this is noticed and the winter months are those of less tourist affluence. With the exception of the Christmas season, which is a particularly exciting time in the capital of Ireland.
The low number of tourists means that there are no long queues at tourist sites and the demand for hotels is lower and so are their prices.
Within the winter, Christmas is when the situation is reversed and prices and hotel occupancy rise somewhat, although it does not reach the figures that are achieved in summer.
What to bring in your suitcase to visit Dublin in winter
The cold will be the main conditioning factor when packing our luggage to travel to Dublin. The essentials that can not miss in your suitcase are:
- A good coat is the best ally in the Irish winter. With good forage and above all of a waterproof material.
- In addition to winter clothing, accessories such as hat, scarf or gloves can not miss as they are good tools against moisture.
- Even if the winter months are not the rainiest, an umbrella or a raincoat should not be missing in your suitcase.
- A good pair of waterproof and comfortable shoes is also highly recommended since most of the city you will visit on foot.