Best Free Attractions in Dublin

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The best Free Attractions in Dublin, Ireland

Garden of Remembrance and Hugh Lane Gallery, Free attractions in Dublin, Ireland, What to do in Dublin, Travelling for Fun: A photo of the Hugh Lane Gallery from the Garden of Remembrance.You have already arrived in Dublin from far far away and for most tourists Dublin is expensive. For me, an Irish guy, Dublin is expensive. €3 for a coffee, €6.50 for a pint in Temple Bar, the list goes on. Of course you are in Dublin to have the ‘craic’ and see the sights but you can’t be seeing everything and paying into every tourist attraction there is. Most of us, well me anyway, are happy to pay for the main tourist attractions but after that I get wary. So with this in mind I have made a list of my best free attractions in Dublin so you don’t have to pay a penny and can keep your entrance fee for pints and craic later on. I know of course you need to see the main sights like Trinity College (also free) and the Book of Kells so I made a different list of what to do in Dublin over your first day or two and the main attractions surrounding Dublin if you want to get out of the city but don’t want to go too far. I am excluding museums from this list as most museums in Dublin are free anyway which is great. All locations are shown at the map at the bottom.

Time to Do: To do all the sights below would take two days but some are very close together (around Dublin Castle for example) so a group be all knocked off in a few hours.

The best Free Attractions in Dublin – Glasnevin Cemetery

Glasnevin Cemetery, Free attractions in Dublin, What to do in Dublin, Ireland, Travelling for Fun: A fallen Celtic cross in Glasnevin cemetery where 1.5million people are buriedA cemetery wouldn’t normally be everybody’s idea of fun but Glasnevin Cemetery is so full of Irish history that it should be a must for everybody and of course it’s free. The cemetery started in 1828 on 9acres and now it holds a whopping 1.5million people and covers 124acres. The main reason to visit Glasnevin Cemetery is not for the vast majority of people who are buried there but for the number of Irish historic figures that are buried there. Daniel O’Connell who did so much for Ireland in the 1800’s, Michael Collins, the man who got the Irish Free State, Eamonn De Valera who is independent Ireland’s most famous politician, Christie Brown (My Left Foot), Brendan Behan (famous Irish writer), Dermot Morgan (Fr. Ted), Luke Kelly (famous Irish singer) and many other rebels with both funny and tragic stories. On the funny/tragic side includes a teenager who buried Glasnevin Cemetery, Free attractions in Dublin, What to do in Dublin, Ireland, Travelling for Fun: The entrance to Daniel O’Connell’s crypt in Glasnevin cemetery. This tomb is the biggest in the cemetery.his mother in the morning and that night was arrested with his mother in his arms after digging her up to sell her to doctors! His explanation was that his mother had always thought him to be enterprising! The cemetery is still in use so don’t be surprised to see a hearse nearby. The cemetery is also free to walk around and there is plenty online about where people are buried if you really want to save. In the shop a map costs €3.50 and if you want a tour (which is excellent) it costs €12 (2hrs) and includes entrance to the small museum downstairs. Opening times: Mon-Fri 10:00-17:00, Sat-Sun 11:00-17:00. The tours are on daily at 11:30 and 14:30. Getting there: 4km north of city centre on the Finglas Road. Bus 140 departs O’Connell Street. Also the Botanic Gardens are close and are serviced by bus numbers 4,9 and 83 (a 13min walk)

 

The best Free Attractions in Dublin – Botanic Gardens

Botanical Gardens, Free attractions in Dublin, What to do in Dublin, Ireland, Travelling for Fun: Flowers and a glasshouse in the background of the Botanical Gardens in Glasnevin.The Botanic Gardens are beside Glasnevin cemetery so they can both easily be done together. It contains a huge amount of plants and flowers from all over the world contained both outside and inside beautiful glasshouses. Even if you are not into plants and flowers, the Botanic Gardens is a great place to relax and get some air. Opening Times: Oct-Feb 09:00 -16:30, Sat-Sun 10:00-16:30. Mar-Sept, Mon-Fri 09:00-17:00, Sat-Sun 10:00-18:00. Getting there: 4km north of city centre on Botanic Road. Bus numbers 4,9 and 83.  Bus 140 departs O’Connell Street and goes to Glasnevin Cemetery, a 13min walk away.

 

The best Free Attractions in Dublin – Dublin Castle

Dublin Castle, Free attractions in Dublin, What to do in Dublin, Ireland, Travelling for Fun: One of the many fancy rooms in the State Apartments of Dublin castle. The mirrors are curved so the master could view every angle of the table!Dublin Castle in the heart of the city has seen some of the most important moments in Irish history since its establishment in 1204. The castle was the heart of British rule in Ireland for hundreds of years and the courtyard is also where the British handed over the reins to an independent Ireland in 1922. State visits still happen in the castle when somebody important comes to these shores. The main points of interest are the Bedford Tower, the Norman tower (now the Garda Museum) and the Royal Chapel all of which are around 800years old. The Dubh Linn Gardens are accessible from the south side of the castle or through a little footbridge in the café and where the famous Chester Beatty Library is located (see below). All of the above are free if open but if you want access to inside the part of the castle that is open there is a fee. Sorry about that. Admission to the state rooms cost €4.50 for an adult and are accessed through the main courtyard. The rooms are hundreds of years old and still used for state visits today. Opening times: Mon-Sat 10:00-16:45, Sun, holidays 12:00-16:45. On the first Wednesday of every month Dublin Castle has free admission. To see all OPW sites with free admission see www.heritageireland.ie/en/media/Free%20Wednesdays.pdf

The best Free Attractions in Dublin – City Hall

City Hall, Free attractions in Dublin, What to do in Dublin, Ireland, Travelling for Fun: The City Hall as viewed from Parliament street is still a working building and a classic example of Georgian architecture.Just outside the gates of Dublin Castle is City Hall. It is an impressive building from the outside and a fine example of Georgian architecture. The impressive dome is still standing since 1779 and is still in use today. It only takes 5 minutes to look around the huge rotunda. There is the ‘story of the capital museum’ downstairs which costs €4 admission. Opening hours: Mon-Sat 10:00-17:15

 

The best Free Attractions in Dublin – Hugh Lane Gallery and the Garden of Remembrance

Garden of Remembrance, Free attractions in Dublin, Ireland, What to do in Dublin, Travelling for Fun: The Garden of Remembrance to remember the people who died for Irish Independence over tulips on a sunny dayTwo small and very different attractions just north of O’Connell Street on Parnell Square North. The Hugh Lane Gallery is for modern and contemporary art in Dublin. There are some great paintings by Irish artists but the jewel in the crown is some of Francis Bacons works including his working studio from London exactly as he left it. So you know it is a mess. A complete mess, with cuttings, brushes, paper everywhere. It is very interesting to see how somebody so famous worked. If you don’t know who Francis Bacon is, well he is a bit of a deal. His most expensive painting sold for $142million. Not bad! Opening hours: Tue-Thurs 10:00-18:00, Fri-Sat 10:00-17:00, Sun 11:00-17:00, Closed Mondays.

The Garden of Remembrance is a well kept small garden with a pool and statues in memory of all the Irish soldiers who have lost their lives for Irish Freedom and is across the road from the Hugh Lane Gallery.

The best Free Attractions in Dublin – The Chester Beatty Library

Botanical Gardens, Free attractions in Dublin, What to do in Dublin, Ireland, Travelling for Fun: One of the many beautiful flowers in the Botanical Gardens in Glasnevin.Not only internationally known but is one of the best museums in Europe which contains treasures from not just Ireland  but Asia, Arabia and Africa. The Chester Beatty may not be for everyone as some of the artefacts, although precious and very interesting, are heavy going if you are not into 3rd century gospels on papyrus or medieval Islamic art. The collection was started by Chester Beatty who was a mining magnate and was established in Dublin in 1950. The current site on Dublin Castle was opened in 2000. If you are seeing Dublin Castle then you should definitely call in.

Opening Hours: May-Sept Mon-Fri 10:00-17:00, Oct-Apr Tue-Fri 10:00-17:00, Sat (all yr) 11:00-17:00, Sun (all yr) 13:00-17:00. Admission: Free. Free Guided Tours: 1pm on Wednesdays and 3pm and 4pm on Sundays.

Map of the Best Free Sights in Dublin

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Best Free Attractions in Dublin, Ireland

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Free Attractions Dublin - Glasnevin Cemetery: 53.371680, -6.280360
Free Attractions Dublin - Botanic Gardens: 53.372141, -6.269374
Free Attractions Dublin - Dublin Castle: 53.343141, -6.267647
Free Attractions Dublin - City Hall: 53.343893, -6.267188
Free Attractions Dublin - Hugh Lane Gallery: 53.354145, -6.264629
Free Attractions Dublin - Garden of Remembrance: 53.353817, -6.264020
Free Attractions Dublin - Chester Beatty Library: 53.342090, -6.267475
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Free Attractions Dublin - Glasnevin Cemetery
Glasnevin Cemetery, Dublin, Ireland
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Free Attractions Dublin - Botanic Gardens
Botanic Gardens, Dublin, Ireland
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Free Attractions Dublin - Dublin Castle
Dublin Castle, Dame Street, Ireland
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Free Attractions Dublin - City Hall
City Hall, Dame Street, Dublin, Ireland
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Free Attractions Dublin - Hugh Lane Gallery
Hugh Lane gallery, Parnell Square North, Ireland
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Free Attractions Dublin - Garden of Remembrance
Garden of Remembrance, Dublin, Ireland
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Free Attractions Dublin - Chester Beatty Library
Chester Beatty Library, Ireland

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