Where to Stay

The Dean

The Blue Room, photograph by Leo Byrne.

Most attractions are minutes away on foot, but The Dean’s complimentary bikes make reaching farther destinations even easier. This quirky, design-forward hotel, with original Irish art set against concrete walls, is a popular local hangout, too, thanks to Sophie’s, its buzzy rooftop eatery.

Rates from €120, deandublin.ie

Where to Eat


This lively market is where you can chow down on vegan cheesecakes, gut-busting arepas and Irish bratwurst made by some of Dublin’s most creative foodies at decent prices. There are also occasional themed festivals that might orbit around beer, cheese or pizza.


The Parnell Heritage Pub & Grill

One of Dublin’s most enduring pubs, this age-old hangout is great for tucking into the stick-to-your-bones dishes that the country is known for: an Irish stew with slow-cooked Wicklow lamb or a beef-and-Guinness casserole (which is €15.90 for dinner). And, there are plenty of other options under €20.


What to Do

Guinness Storehouse

Dublin Guinness Storehouse, photograph by Anton Ivanov/Shutterstock.

The home of Ireland’s most famous export takes you through Guinness’ history and production. The €18.50 ticket (book online for this rate) is a bit steep, but the tour includes a pint of beer that you can enjoy in the famous Gravity Bar with its impressive, unobstructed views of Dublin.


National Gallery of Ireland

Michelangelo Merisi da Caravaggio’s The Taking of Christ is just one of the world-class highlights at this no-cost museum. Guided tours and rousing lectures are organized frequently, and most of them are free.


Sundays @ Noon Concert Series

In the picturesque Sculpture Gallery of the Hugh Lane Gallery is a weekly concert featuring both Irish and international musicians. Running since 1975, this elegant affair is technically free, except for the €2-per-person fee that goes toward the cost of putting on the event.


Abbey Theatre

Ireland’s national theatre (originally opened in 1904) has staged many high-profile events. If you want to experience it without dropping a penny, come for First Free Previews (in August and September), a first-come, first-served sneak-peek showing of an upcoming production.


Sandemans New Europe Free Tour of Dublin

There’s no better (or cheaper) way to see the Irish capital’s greatest hits than with this three-hour romp through town led by lively guides, who you should tip once it’s over, because the tour is free.


Pubs & Bars

The Temple Bar, photograph by Lukas Bischoff/iStock.

Where to explore more of Dublin’s food and drink scene

The Stags Head
The Cobblestone
Grogan’s Castle Lounge
The Brazen Head

€ €
The Palace Bar
The Bath Pub
J.W. Sweetman
The Norseman

€ € €
L. Mulligan Grocer
9 Below
Farrier & Draper
Vintage Cocktail Club
The Lucky Duck

Get more budget-friendly travel ideas

[This story appears in the July 2019 edition of WestJet Magazine.]