Tuesday | 23rd July 2024

Love Seaside Festivals? Come and Enjoy Coastival in Dún Laoghaire Town and Support Local Businesses

22. 06. 2023

Buy Local & Support Local Businesses when visiting for Coastival

This summer in Dún Laoghaire looks very promising with so many festivals and happenings taking place in our town. The best thing is there’s something for everyone. Whether you are visitor or local, young or in your best years, with family, friends, or exploring solo, Dun Laoghaire has got what you need.

There is one festival that’s new and will become close to our hearts because it celebrates everything we love about Dun Laoghaire, and that’s Coastival. Dun Laoghaire Rathdown County Council has put together this fantastic, week-long festival that coincides with the Volvo Dun Laoghaire Regatta and includes live music, comedy shows, boat cruises, family fun, watersports, heritage events and so much more.

Traditionally, our team is always there to support local business community so for this month’s Love Dun Laoghaire feature we are focusing on the businesses in our town that will be venues for the Coastival events as well as those businesses that can help make your visit more enjoyable.

Let’s take a look at some of them.

Walters Pub – Bar & Venue

If you are looking for a mouthwatering food and a place to go out in Dun Laoghaire, then the Walters Pub is an excellent choice. Meet the driving force behind this fantastic bar and venue in our town – Michelle Rabbette. Actually a trained solicitor, Michelle decided to change her occupation, to do something different with her life and as a result has been involved in Walters on an operational level since October of last year.

Walters since 1904, and Lloyd’s Pub prior to that, 68 Upper George’s Street has been part of the social fabric of Dún Laoghaire for many generations. Walters Pub is a beautiful old building and is rapidly returning to being a  well established business in the community, albeit, in the past it was closed for eight years. It took about a year to refurbish the venue and give it a new life and now Walters is a thriving place yet again, working successfully and contributing to the vibrancy of the local area.

Walters is know for excellent food, drink and music, but the pub also supports local artists and has a tight-knit connections with ArtNetdlr (a voluntary group of professional artists of every discipline, connected to Dún Laoghaire – Rathdown, working with the support of the Arts Office of DLR County Council). They have exhibitions and rotating artwork every three months. Local artist can apply to ArtNetdlr to have their work featured and between 80 and 120 artworks are selected each time for the exhibition. Exhibition opening nights are always exciting for the artists, Walters and the general public. In addition Walters separately does a solo exhibition in their function room. It changes every month and that’s a big deal for any artist to get such a high profile space for a month to exhibit just their work. Walters provides this service completely free of charge to the artist.

Walters also have tango dancing every Sunday night. It has grown rapidly thanks to their dancers Magda and Victor. They come to the pub every Sunday afternoon, starting with beginner classes, then intermediate and then the more advanced classes and finally there’s an exciting dance off which is always beautiful to watch. It gives the whole venue a glamorous feel. Periodically they host international dance champions and people from all over the country come to Walters to watch them.

Walters is also trying a lot of different types of bands. They have live music every Thursday, Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. They are experimenting with different genres and age groups and still discovering what’s the taste of our community. However Jazz on Sundays has established itself as a regular thing, followed in popularity by Bossa nova group called Blue Bossa that’s hugely successful. Walters are always involved in different happenings in our town. They were recently involved in the comedy festival and the storytelling festival. They host business functions, various celebrations – birthdays, christenings, weddings.

The pub also launched a new kitchen in January, they have two super chefs so Walters is the place for everyone – the foodies, artists, musicians, dancers!

Michelle Walters

Michelle Rabbette, Manager at Walters

Coastival Events at Walters

During the Coastival Walters will be hosting several artists. The first one is an artist named Patrick O’Byrne. He is unique as some of his songs will be traditional Irish. The pub’s own bands will be performing during Coastival as well and just before the festival they will be launching their new summer menu, so that’s definitely one more good reason to visit them.

How to make reservations and attend events at Walters

The tickets for the events could be purchased on the Coastival Nights website. If you are coming for a meal you can book a table on Walters website, or call at 01-5673248

Here’s where you can find Walters:

68 George’s Street Upper, Dún Laoghaire, Dublin, A96 Y981

(01) 567 3248


Google Reviews Walters

Google Reviews Walters


People’s Park Cafe – New Business

Please join us in welcoming a new business to our town. The brand new People’s Park Café has just been opened and we wish them the best of luck. We were delighted to talk with their team – Grace McAleese and Katie Markham – to learn more and bring to life the story of their new business in Dun Laoghaire.

Grace told us that Michael Wright, the CEO of The Wright Group, started working with his dad in the fishing industry in his teens. He learned how to pick and use fresh fish from local suppliers and serve it to their customers, as a result using the best, fresh local suppliers is at the heart of their whole business. In his early twenties Michael went to New York and worked in the hospitality sector where he gained international experience before he came back home. Around that time he opened a bar in a vacant part of the Howth Dart station. From then on Michael opened several bars and restaurants across the country. The Wright Group also operates the Marqette Food Hall & Bar in the Dublin Airport which has won numerous prestigious awards over the years for food and beverages.

Michael is motivated by creating unique experiences for their customers, being creative and working with great talent across the Wright group. Teamwork is key and everyone brings their personality and a unique skillset to the Wright group.

The Wright Group adopts a family kind of group approach to its work. Everyone’s treated equally and with respect, and they believe that then transfers onto the high level of service that the customers experience. Michael and his team really love getting creative in new spaces, especially in such a beautiful building like People’s Park Café. Michael’s motto from the start of business has been “Dream it, believe it, achieve it.” and that’s worked for the group every time and he thinks that’s what they will bring to their new location in The People’s Park now!

Katie Markham, Manager at People’s Park Café

Why Visit People’s Park Café During Coastival

People’s Park Café is housed in the refurbished old tea rooms which is a beautiful looking building. Along with that, it’s located in stunning surroundings. The park is very well maintained and gorgeous full of super borders and flowers, a real credit to the parks team from the County Council. It’s just a stone throwaway from the Dart station, the yacht clubs and multiple bus routes. So the location is really accessible to everybody. Oh and their coffee is roasted just down the road in Dun Laoghaire so there’s no carbon foot-print involved in transport which they’re really proud of.

All the food in People’s Park Café will be freshly prepared each day using local suppliers where possible. Because Coastival is going to be a busy event People’s Park Café have prepared many “grab and go” options. If people want to sit down and relax they can do that to on their café beautiful patio overlooking the park. For grab and go options People’s Park Café offers salads, sandwiches, juices, smoothies, coffees, and then if you’re sitting in, they have something a little bit extra. People’s Park Café offers smoked salmon and many other plates. They serve burgers, vegetarian and vegan dishes as well as handcrafted toasties, fresh pastries, scones. Non-alcoholic and alcoholic beverages like wine and beer will be available to diners. They have something for everybody.

The People’s Park Café team encourages people to come for a walk around our beautiful park where they can sip on their coffee while enjoying a bite to eat if they want to go.

Also, in the future the café will be hosting private evening events for corporate and celebratory get togethers. People will be able to rent out People’s Park Café as a unique and stunning destination for special occasions and events.

Here’s where you can find People’s Park Café:

The Peoples Park, Park Rd, Dún Laoghaire, Dublin, A96 CF74

086 152 8383


Google Reviews People's Park Café

Google Reviews People’s Park Café


National Maritime Museum of Ireland

Are you ready for an adventure during your Coastival visit to Dun Laoghaire? Our next Coastival stop is Ireland’s National Maritime Museum. Let’s explore together what this unique place in our town has to offer and there’s no better man to talk about it than the current president of the Maritime Institute, Joe Varley.

Joe personally got involved with the museum 19 years ago. He always liked the historical side of the things and the potential for research to create a better understanding of the past and the present. He considers his work in the museum very interesting and an opportunity to make the things he is passionate about interesting to other people and visitors as well. The Maritime Museum is a functioning museum, they also have a very good library, and do quite a lot of research. While there are maritime museums all over the coast of Ireland, the exhibits the museum in Dun Laoghaire has reflects quite a lot of the maritime history of the town and also reflects a reasonable amount of the maritime history of Ireland.

Joe Varley, Manager at The Maritime Museum

Why Visit The Maritime Museum During Coastival

As Joe says himself the Maritime Museum is interesting, informative and good value for a visit!

If you are an absolute stranger to Dun Laoghaire the museum has a series of maps that will be of interest. One particular map is very interesting, it dates from 1985 and it shows everything in Dublin Bay in relation to navigation. The museum also has a map from 1800 which shows the surveys Captain William Bligh (who is remembered for his role in the mutiny on the HMS Bounty) did of Dublin Bay. And they have a very interesting map that’s a part of a display which shows the development of Dun Laoghaire as a ferry port.

What the visitors could find interesting is the current exhibition on the laying of the transatlantic cables. The first transatlantic cable was laid in 1866 and it linked Western Europe and the United States. In a way it paved the way for the development of the digital age that we have at the moment and we take for granted.

How to book tickets and experience The Maritime Museum

To visit The Maritime Museum you can make a booking on their website, call at 01-2800969, or email at [email protected].  Walk-ins are also acceptable.

Here’s where you can find The Maritime Museum:

Haigh Terrace, Dún Laoghaire, Dun Laoghaire

(01) 280 0969


Google Reviews The Maritime Museum

Google Reviews The Maritime Museum


Dlr LexIcon – Library & Cultural Centre – Venue

We are taking you further in our journey around our beautiful town to other venues involved in Coastival. No matter if you are a local or just visiting, stopping by Dlr LexIcon is always a real treat. Dlr LexIcon is known as the venue for many events for all tastes and ages, so its no surprise that they are hosting a wide range of events during Coastival as well.

We had a pleasure to talk to Susan Lynch, a librarian at Dlr LexIcon to learn more about the venue and upcoming events. Susan is in the team of librarians that have programmed and organised a Family Fun day as part of the Coastival festival. In her day to day work she looks after events in dlr libraries, outreach, social media, marketing and promotion of their services.

Coastival will bring many people to the coast and to the Dún Laoghaire area for the weeklong summer events festival. Coastival will not only showcase the beautiful seaside maritime town that is Dún Laoghaire but also highlight the wonderful things that take place in and around the town and coastal area, including community, commercial, civic activities and how all of these things combined make Dún Laoghaire a fabulous and really unique place to reside, work and indeed visit this July.

Dlr LexIcon librarians Susan Lynch, Ciara Jones & Emma McKeag

Coastival Events at Dlr LexIcon

The dlr LexIcon is a cultural centre, home to the biggest public library in Ireland, a municipal gallery, a studio theatre, Ink Café and a whole range of services. If you haven’t been before, come along and see all that is on offer. 

Dlr LexIcon has an average footfall of 1,300 visitors daily and the venue runs an extensive event and exhibition programme. For Coastival alongside the Family Fun day, they will also have a Marconi themed exhibition as part of the Festival. In 1898 Marconi created history from the building adjoining the LexIcon when he used radio to broadcast coverage of the Kingstown Regatta, the first time in the world that radio had been used in this way. They also like to enliven their outdoor spaces! The students from IADT are showcasing their graduate work on the walls of Moran Park and they also have their Scéal Trails (a story book you can read with family and friends as you walk) as well as yarn bombing, all in place to help celebrate Coastival!

How to make reservations and attend events at Dlr LexIcon

Most events programmed for the Family Fun day don’t need to be booked and are simply walk up events for all to enjoy. The only events Dlr LexIcon requires booking for are the events with Chris Haughton and his sister Lynn Haughton. Chris is the author of Don’t Worry, Little Crab, the new sea themed Scéal Trail on the LexIcon walls. They also have a second Scéal Trail called RMS Leinster – The Forgotten Tragedy. The sinking of the RMS Leinster is regarded as Ireland’s greatest maritime disaster, the biggest sea disaster ever known in Irish waters.

All details of events running throughout the day will be on dlr Libraries website, social media and the main dlr council website

Here’s where you can find Dlr LexIcon:

Queen’s Rd, Dún Laoghaire

(01) 280 1147


Google Reviews Dlr Lexicon

Google Reviews Dlr Lexicon

Coastival Venues – The Purty Kitchen & The Lighthouse 

Let’s check out two more venues that are hosting fantastic performances during Coastival. Entertainment in The Purty Kitchen and The Lighthouse is guaranteed. To find out about the shows in these two popular spots in our town we spoke to Aidan Killian, the event coordinator for the Coastival Nights.

Aidan got involved in this field of work during the Comedy Festival which was organised last year by the council. The festival was hugely successful, so when the council decided to organise a larger event that’s all about celebrating Dun Laoghaire with day time and night time events, Aidan was tasked with booking comedy acts for Coastival nights. The Coastival Nights team is delivering events over many Dun Laoghaire venues. They teamed-up with Marcus Lester on the music events side of things. Marcus is also a local guy from Dun Laoghaire. This team booked nearly 40 events to take place from July 1st to July 9th. So if you’re looking for something to do at nighttime, you got plenty of options.

Coastival Nights will have about 20 different free shows and about 15 or more paid shows. You could have anything from watching fun pop music, like ABBA Sensations, or you could see Brian Kennedy or traditional music with Kila, a great, well known Irish band. They have Mundy, Mack Fleetwood, comedy shows with David McSavage, Al Porter, Andrew Maxwell. Aideen McQueen taking place. And there are nightclub events as well, so if people want to go clubbing afterwards from 10pm to late, you can do that. There’s a Brazil night, a Bollywood night and a Latino night! They’ve got David Kit in the Lighthouse. They even have Candle Lit Tales, which is a storytelling event and as a daytime event you could bring your children to that one. There are a lot of local bands, like the James Boy, Aaron Row, there’s an Open Mic Nights, the Sunday Jazz, etc. Something for everyone!

The original plan was to book 12 night shows but the guys behind Coastival Nights wanted to go the extra mile as Dun Laoghaire is a magical spot and Coastival was an opportunity to organise special set of events so they have created a huge programme for the week of Coastival. The team is hopeful that the festival will bring people to the town and that they will have a great time, leave feeling nourished and enjoying life more.

Aidan Killian, Event Coordinator for Coastival

Coastival Events at The Purty Kitchen & The Lighthouse

The Purty Kitchen Events

There’s a total of six events at the Purty Kitchen. On July 1st there’s Brian Kennedy.

July 2nd – There’s a comedy extravaganza. It’s quite a big night of comedy. Performers for the night are Al Porter, Andrew Maxwell who is flying in for the event. There’s Aideen McQueen and Karl Spain. These are four big-name comedians on that show.

And then on July 6th, there’s another comedy show with David McSavage, who’s an Instagram star at the moment from Savage Eye.

July 7th will see Jerry Fish. That’ll be a fun show it’s selling really well.

July 8th – Kila, a huge Irish band and the Bog Bodies are their support act. They’re also great upcoming trad band, something different.

July 9th – Mack Fleetwood – a tribute to Fleetwood Mac band which is already sold out.

The Lighthouse Events

Harry Hudson Taylor’s going to do his show and he’s renamed himself as a Lady Bird lad. So this will be his debut in Ireland as Lady Bird lad.

The Lighthouse pub is a fun venue with a space upstairs which they call the top deck. It has beautiful lights and great stage and it’s definitely a great place for music or any live event.

At the same night after the first announced show, we have Favela Chic which is a Brazil night. Some DJs will be there and that will be a late night show.

July 2nd – Abby Sensations – that will be packed. Everyone will be dancing and having a laugh.

On July 7th David Kitt is performing with David Gray. After him, there will be a Bollywood night. There will be two DJs in for that event. One upstairs and downstairs. Both Bollywood themed. And then we have Thin as Lizzie that just got added. Thin is a tribute band of Thin Lizzie and they are supported by Def Nettle.

Finally on July 8th there will be Fiesta Latina, presented by The Latin Mix with DJs and guests.

How to make reservations and attend events at The Purty Kitchen & The Lighthouse

The best way to book your tickets is to go to the website coastivalnights.ie. You can get the tickets on the Ticketmaster as well, but the Coastival Nights website has all events in one place, which could be more convenient. Aidan invites you to check out the free shows as well because they are very good.

Here’s where you can find The Purty Kitchen & The Lighthouse:

The Purty Kitchen

3-5 Old Dunleary Rd, Dún Laoghaire, Dublin, A96 X7W1

(01) 284 3576


Google Reviews The Purty Kitchen

Google Reviews The Purty Kitchen

The Lighthouse

88 George’s Street Lower, Dún Laoghaire, Dublin, A96 YA39

(01) 504 2113


Google Reviews The Lighthouse

Google Reviews The Lighthouse


Slaughterhouse Vintage – Upcycled and Vintage Clothing for Coastival

Finally, if you are into vintage clothing, Dun Laoghaire is the destination for you. Why don’t you stop by Slaughterhouse Vintage and get something for yourself for your Coastival nights out?

We had a great pleasure to meet and talk to Francis, owner of Dún Laoghaire’s unique Slaughterhouse Vintage. Francis got into the business with his father. His father has a vintage store in the Temple Bar area for many years, so he was born into the business in a way. He opened the shop in Dún Laoghaire six years ago and it’s still going strong.

What makes Slaughterhouse Vintage interesting is that they do collaborations with different designers and young people making specialist clothes, and they always have good deals for the clothes.

Francis McQuade, Owner at Slaughterhouse Vintage

Why Visit Slaughterhouse Vintage During Coastival

Francis encourages people to stop by the shop to get the exact style of clothes they want. Upcycling is the trend now but he thinks it’s here to stay. In the past some people felt that second hand clothes were taboo in some way, that only new clothes fitted the social aspirations of people. But the mindset and buying habits are changing with more and more people being environmentally conscious.

Per Francis’ words, if we change how we approach buying clothes and fashion, we have a good chance to save the planet as at the moment the fashion industry is one of the world’s most polluting industries.

How to buy at Slaughterhouse Vintage

Stop by the shop on the Mulgrave Street, or shop online.

Here’s where you can find Slaughterhouse Vintage:

Lees Lane, 15a Mulgrave St, Dún Laoghaire, Dublin, A96 KC80

086 162 6195


Google Reviews Slaughterhouse Vintage

Google Reviews Slaughterhouse Vintage


Excited for Coastival?

Are you packing yet? Come to Dun Laoghaire for Coastival to get a bit cultured, have a nice stroll, or shake your body ’til late at night if you are up to it, but most of all fill your days with laughter and positive energy. From 1st to 9th July, Dun Laoghaire is the place to be. Welcome to our town!

Thank you for supporting our Dun Laoghaire business community!

For a list of all the retail outlets in our town please see our Dún Laoghaire Town business directory.

Would you like us to include your business in future Love Dún Laoghaire features?

We would be delighted to, please send an email to [email protected] with details of your location in Dún Laoghaire and we will be in touch. 

Supported by

bank of ireland and DLR county council logos


Stay up to Date. Signup for our Newsletter

* indicates required