10 Best Dublin Pubs

In this post you will know the best pubs in Dublin, a must on your visit to the city.

Ana Caballero

Ana Caballero

8 min read

10 Best Dublin Pubs

Dublin | @ Steven Hylands

Many say that Dublin is the city with the most pubs. And it seems quite true. Just take a short walk through the streets and you will find all kinds of bars where you can enjoy the typical Irish beer and also enjoy the local cuisine.

If you are looking for options on what to see and do in Dublin, don't miss the opportunity to experience the Irish life and enjoy some of the 10 best pubs in the city. Will you join me?

1. The Brazen Head

Entrance to The Brazen Head| ©Harold Strong
Entrance to The Brazen Head| ©Harold Strong

The Brazen Head is considered to be the oldest pub in the entire city of Dublin...and in all of Ireland! In fact, in the world, it is the fifth oldest.

Its location is a little further away from the central area of bars and pubs, but I still recommend you to visit this place that opened its doors in 1198.

The bar has a particular charm since the building was renovated thousands of times; it is like a combination of all those styles from different years, but maintaining a traditional Irish design. It has nothing more and nothing less than 3 full floors of tables.

For those who wish to enjoy the outdoors, it has a garden in the entrance area where there is as much music as inside. Not only will you be able to taste a good beer, but they also offer a wide variety of dishes.

  • Where: 20 Lower Bridge St. Usher's Quay, Dublin, DO8 WC64
  • Opening hours: Monday to Saturday from 12hs to midnight. Please note that the kitchen closes at 9pm.

2. O'Neill

Exterior of the O'Neill| ©VW49
Exterior of the O'Neill| ©VW49

No matter who you ask about where to go out in the city of Dublin. Surely many will name this famous pub.

O'Neill is one of the most central pubs in the whole city and it is easy to identify it, as it is located right in front of the statue of Molly Malone. A famous spot since this is the starting point of every guided tour.

This bar is characterized for having excellent music at night, since there are different groups playing live. It was opened 3 centuries ago. Can you believe it?

And besides its exquisite food and selection of beers, the curious fact is that O'Neill is also famous for its breakfasts. So, if you're not a night person, you can also enjoy it in the morning.

It's also a very large 3-story building, which is a great thing so no one is left without enjoying O'Neill.

  • Where: 2 Suffolk Street, Dublin 2
  • Opening hours: Monday to Saturday from 11.30am to 11.30pm and Saturday from 11.30am to midnight. Sundays from 12hs to 23hs.

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3. The Palace Bar

Inside The Palace Bar| ©David R
Inside The Palace Bar| ©David R

This 200 year old bar is another of Dublin's city gems. The Palace Bar is not as large a structure as others I mention in the list; remember to go early or make reservations.

But what makes this pub special is its intellectual fame. Yes, you read that right. Its proximity to Trinity College, has made this pub a meeting place for professors and students after university classes. It is also said that many famous literary figures have taken a break in this pub to work on their projects.

If you thought that Dublin was all beer and nothing else, here you can see that it is not.

  • Where: No.21 Fleet Street Dublin 2 D02 H950 H950
  • Opening hours: Monday to Thursday from 10.30am to 11.30pm, Friday and Saturday from 10.30am to midnight and Sunday from 12.30pm to 11.30pm.

4. The Oliver St. John Gogarty

The Oliver St. John Gogarty| ©Chema S
The Oliver St. John Gogarty| ©Chema S

The Oliver is very particular because its name immortalizes a doctor of this city who was also fond of poetry. It is located in the central bar area and has very long opening hours, so you don't have to coordinate your visit so much, you will always have some time to visit it.

This bar also has a hostel and a part dedicated to its literary public. Their live music sessions are very lively and every night there is a different program, so you will not get bored and you can go several times and always see something different.

Don't worry about the menu, as they also have a restaurant service and you will be able to eat very well. Not just a snack.

  • Where: Fleet Street and Anglesea Street, Temple Bar, Dublin 2.
  • Hours: Monday to Saturday from 10.30am to 2.30am. And Sundays from 12hs to 1.30hs.

5. The Temple Bar

The Temple Bar| ©Nicholas H
The Temple Bar| ©Nicholas H

When you think of Dublin, the postcard we have in mind is that red corner, with a big pub full of tourists. Well, the one in the picture is TheTemple Bar.

It may be confusing that the whole area and this pub have the same name, but it may also be why it's so famous. I'd say it's the classic of all Dublin classics.

The reality is that, beyond the fact that you won't find any locals in this pub, it's a touristy place with a lot of pleasantness and a very lively atmosphere. It is a bit more expensive than the rest, but people continue to visit it because the quality of everything they offer is well worth it. What's more, at The Temple Bar, they brew the beer themselves.

In addition, of course, you can enjoy live music and take a beautiful picture with the statue of James Joyce sitting on a table. It has a very popular and busy indoor garden too, in case you feel like going out of the traditional pub atmosphere.

  • Where: 47-48, Temple Bar, Dublin
  • Hours: daily from 10.30am to 2am.

Book a pub crawl in Dublin

6. The Merchant Arch

By night in The Merchant Arch| ©Bruno X
By night in The Merchant Arch| ©Bruno X

Opposite the Half Penny Bridge, in a privileged location, you can enjoy The Merchant's Arch, the most elegant of all the classic bars in the city of Dublin.

This perception comes from the style of its building and its decoration. The Merchant's Arch has existed since 1821 as many years ago, this building was a hall where the members of the merchants guild met, one of the only spaces of this type of the nineteenth century that are still standing in the whole city.

This bar is a good place to enjoy throughout the day, as they have a very good menu to recharge your batteries at lunch, facing your tour of the city of Dublin. If you prefer to visit it at night, the offer of beers is wide, but so are the whiskies.

Finally, in addition to its unique and particular style, The Merchant's Arch is famous for its terrace, which has spectacular views of the River Liffey.

  • Where: 48/49 Wellington Quay, Temple Bar, Dublin 2
  • Hours: Monday to Thursday from 10am to midnight. Fridays and Saturdays from 10hs to 2.30hs and Sundays from 10hs to 23.30hs.

Book a gastronomic tour of Dublin

7. The Stags Head

The Stags Head| ©Adam Bruderer
The Stags Head| ©Adam Bruderer

If you're looking for The Stags Head, look up and try to find the giant deer head on its main facade.

This pub is different because of its Victorian-era décor, an experience in itself. In fact, years ago and before it became a pub, it was a high-class restaurant.

The menu is basic, as it focuses on being a traditional Irish pub. Many locals go to enjoy the rugby matches while enjoying a good beer. So you can experience this tradition of Irish culture.

  • Where: The Stags Head 1 Dame Court, Dublin 2
  • Hours: Monday to Thursday from 10.30am to 11pm. Fridays and Saturdays from 10.30am to 1am. Sundays from 12.30hs to 23hs.

8. J.W. Sweetman

J.W. Sweetman| ©potatonutz
J.W. Sweetman| ©potatonutz

Also on the banks of the River Liffey, J.W. Sweetman is a pub that also brews its own craft beers. It is a tasting experience in itself.

You can do a tasting of 5 types of beers at a very good price, which I highly recommend. The reality is that the range of flavors is wide, and you can try from a light blonde beer to a dark beer with a good consistency. It is interesting to experience how each flavor feels on the palate.

The pub has a very lively and festive atmosphere, always with the characteristic Irish music in the background, and live bands in the evenings.

  • Where: 1-2 Burgh Quay Dublin 2
  • Hours: Monday to Sunday from 16hs to 22hs

9. The Church

The Church| ©William Murphy
The Church| ©William Murphy

The Church is not your typical Irish pub by any means. The reality is that I have included this option because of the unique and impressive location of this bar.

The Church, housed in the old 18th century church of Santa Maria, is well worth seeing how this structure has been adapted into a bar that doubles as a restaurant. If you stay on the second floor, the atmosphere is very informal and you will find a large bar where you can enjoy the best beers and whiskeys in the area.

  • Where: Jervis St, North City, Dublin 1, D01 YX64, Ireland
  • Hours: Monday to Thursday from 10.30am to 10pm. Fridays and Saturdays from 10.30hs to 00.30hs and Sundays from 11.30hs to 22hs.

10. The Lotts Caffe Bar

The Lotts Caffe Bar| ©Jasfiden
The Lotts Caffe Bar| ©Jasfiden

In the last place of this list of recommendations for Dublin, I present to you The Lotts Caffe Bar.

In this case, this pub is famous for its gastronomic offer. It offers a very interesting menu that you cannot miss. The star is the entrecote, a kind of meat cooked on a stone. The menu comes with a bottle of wine and some salads to accompany it. The price is very good and it is offered from Sunday to Wednesday, those "quieter" days in the Irish night.

But make no mistake; The Lotts Caffe is still a bar rather than a restaurant. The style is charming with an antique open fireplace and a lounge filled with mosaics and chandeliers.

I recommend booking in advance if you are going to visit as it is not only tourists, of which there are many, but locals as well. Nobody wants to miss The Lotts Bar - what about you, are you going to miss it?

  • Where: 9 Lower Liffey Street, Dublin 1
  • Hours: Monday to Wednesday, from 12hs to 20hs. Thursdays from 12hs to 22hs. Fridays and Saturdays from 12hs to 00hs and Sundays from 12hs to 21hs.

If you liked this article, you might be interested in

Guinness tasting at the Gravity Bar| ©José María Mateos
Guinness tasting at the Gravity Bar| ©José María Mateos

If you are a fan of the world of beer and this article has been useful to you, do not hesitate to buy tickets to the Guinness Storehouse, where you can experience the history of the most emblematic beer in Ireland.

But if you are looking for itinerary ideas instead, remember that no matter how much time you spend in Dublin. It's always a good time to take the best tours and excursions from Dublin.