Facing the chilling winds of the Irish Sea and nestled alongside the stunning Wicklow Mountains, Dublin is a cultural powerhouse and it’s packed with history. The city is known for its friendly and outgoing residents, who value good craic above all else. Dublin has been a bustling and lively city ever since it was developed as a Viking trading settlement and today it continues to be a hub of business, politics and entertainment.
Possibly the city with the strongest relationship to drinking culture, Dublin is famed across the globe for its pubs, bars and breweries, which produce and supply many of the world’s favourite beers and ales, as well as attracting thousands of tourists every year. With more than 50% of Dublin’s population being under 25, the city is one of the world’s most youthful cities and as such, there is an energetic and care-free atmosphere that flows through its streets.
A leader in gay rights, Dublin is one of the gayest cities in Europe and is a pioneer in the struggle for LGBT+ equality. With some of the best gay bars and clubs on the continent, its no surprise that this magical city is an unmissable destination for any gay traveler.
Located in the heart of St James Gate, the traditional centre for brewing in the city, the Guinness Storehouse was the original fermentation plant for the brewery. The building is now a tourist attraction and museum dedicated to educating its visitors on the history of the iconic drink and the culture that surrounds “the black stuff”.
After touring the fascinating and highly-popular museum, visitors at the Storehouse can make their way up to the Gravity Bar – a panoramic glass bar offering unrivalled views across Dublin’s skyline. Here, a range of original and experimental Guinness creations can be sampled by visitors. Each entrance ticket comes with a complimentary pint of Guinness and you can even stop for a bite at the Guinness Storehouse Restaurant.
Dublin is the world capital of drinking. The city boasts a selection of the best nightlife experiences to be had in Europe and its gay venues certainly don’t disappoint. There is no distinct gay district here, and whilst gay bars and clubs can be found throughout the city, the epicentre of nightlife culture is the Temple Bar area.
The George opened its doors in 1985, and offered a safe and inclusive space to Ireland’s gay community since before homosexuality was legalised in the country. Recognised throughout Europe as one of the continent’s best gay venues, The George continues to be a vibrant and judgement-free venue for LGBT+ people of all identities. The club should be an unmissable stop on any gay traveler’s itinerary and promises endless and unadulterated fun.
Dublin is a small city, and this is great if you’re looking to sample a range of nightlife venues as most are located within quick walking distance of one another. Some of the best gay bars and clubs in Dublin include Panti Bar, Oscar’s, Street 66 and Pennylane.
Read More: A Gay Guide to Dublin.
One of the most important buildings in Irish history and a cherished feature of the city’s skyline, the Dublin Castle is an essential part of the Irish government’s official complex. Since 1684, the building has hosted various national leaders and assemblies and the castle’s state apartments are often still used for diplomatic meetings and ceremonies.
Visitors can tour the castle as part of a guided or self-guided tour and will be able to observe the stunning range of antiques and treasures that have been collected throughout the centuries. After Ireland became the first country to nationally legalise same-sex marriage by popular vote, the city’s residents took to the castle grounds to celebrate the momentous achievement, making it an important site in the country’s LGBT+ history.
Situated on the south bank of the River Liffey in central Dublin, Temple Bar is considered to be the cultural and entertainment quarter of the city. Home to a vast number of cultural institutions and galleries, by night the area transforms into a bustling and lively centre of clubbing, partying and non-judgemental fun. Temple Bar is where you’ll find Dublin’s most iconic nighttime venues, including The Temple Bar, The George and The Foggy Dew.
In summer, the district comes alive as the many outdoor spaces teem with people day drinking and chatting with friends. Also home to the city’s main fashion market – Cow’s Lane Market, Temple Bar is a fashionable, edgy and quirky district and it’s here that you’ll see many of the city’s most stylish and well-dressed individuals.
Trinity College Library
Trinity College is the oldest university in Ireland and has been an institution of prestige since its founding in 1592. Boasting Oscar Wilde, Isaac Newton and Rajiv Gandhi among its alumni, the university is also home to some of the most beautiful and historical buildings in Dublin. Located at the end of a charming cobbled street, the Trinity College Library is a vast and ornate structure that is regarded as one of the city’s most inspiring buildings.
Visitors can tour the library and even enjoy an exhibition of the Book of Kells, a sacred and immaculately preserve manuscript that dates back to the 9th century and includes the four gospels of the New Testament. The library has featured as a backdrop in countless movies and TV shows including Sally Rooney’s Normal People and is also one of Dublin’s most Instagrammed places.
by George Pizani | On: Gay Dublin