Top 10 Things To Do in Dún Laoghaire Town
Want a great day out or just spend some time with us while passing through?
Here’s our hit list of the top ten things to do in Dún Laoghaire Town
Where to start? There is so much to do and see in the coastal town of Dún Laoghaire. Located on on the glistening south coast of Dublin Bay, the town first came to prominence as a tourist destination during Victorian times, thanks to the construction of it’s famous Harbour, and because Ireland’s first ever railway connected Dublin to Dún Laoghaire (then known as Kingstown).
The friendly welcome to visitors is what makes Dún Laoghaire a great place to stay or make a day trip from Dublin City Centre (which is only 20 minutes away by DART). With so much to do in our town we have grouped our recommendations into a series of themes depending on the time of day.
AM – Eating & Drinking in Dun Laoghaire Town
1. Get yourself a great coffee
A vibrant Coffee Culture has grown up over the last number of years in Dún Laoghaire with the town having more quality coffee outlets than anywhere else in Dublin, we are even home to a Baristas Academy in JJ Darbovens. From specialist coffee providers such as TwoBeans (whose motto is “Life is Too Short to Drink Bad Coffee”) to cool hangouts like Shoe Lane the Baristas of Dún Laoghaire will happily make you your coffee of choice so as you can sit down and get some work done or relax and watch the world go by.
2. Eat something delicious
Dún Laoghaire is a foodies dream come true. There is so much to choose from in the town. Be it fish & chips along the pier, pizza overlooking the harbour, all the restaurants at The Pavilion & Crofton Road, and you’ll be spoilt for choice around the George’s Street area.
The town has it all, and we’ve made it really easy for you to pick where to go as we’ve put them all together for you in our Where to Eat & Drink section in our Dún Laoghaire Town directory.
AM – Experience Dún Laoghaire Town
3. Shop ‘Till You Drop
Did you know there are over 220 shops in Dún Laoghaire? Yep, it’s true. We’ve counted them. And you can check them all out in our directory. From small independent family run boutiques to international brands, Dún Laoghaire has it!
The town is also home to two shopping centres and one of the longest high streets in Ireland coming in at 1.1km running from People’s Park to York Road.
4. Get Some Culture into You! See all the fascinating history of our town in a short walking tour.
The National Maritime Museum of Ireland is situated in a 180 year old mariners church, and is home to loads of historical naval artifacts and exhibitions. You will learn about maritime history, exploration, navigation, radio, deep-sea cable technology, nature, wildlife and view art inspired by the sea.
And just beside the Museum is the now famous dlr Lexicon, the flagship library for Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown. Opened in 2014, it boasts unparalleled views of Dublin Bay, and incredible award winning architecture both inside and out. A treasure of Dun Laoghaire, the Oratory of the Sacred Heart was created to celebrate the end of World War I and is one of Dún Laoghaire hidden secrets. Well worth a visit.
We’ve put them all together for you in our Historic Dún Laoghaire Walking Tour map.
PM – Take Some Gentle Exercise
5. Take the air with a walk on the Pier
No visit to Dún Laoghaire would be complete without walking one of the Harbours piers. The East Pier, is the more trodden of the two. At 2.6km out and back, it’s featured in some famous films over the years, including Michael Collins (1996) and 2016’s Sing Street.
Along the way you’ll see the Analemmatic Sundial, and Band Stand, before arriving at the Battery and lighthouse at the end.
The West Pier is a little further out of the way, and a bit more rustic, than it’s counterpart to the east, as it’s unpaved. Coming in at just over 3km out and back it’s slightly longer too, on the way you’ll pass by the Coal Harbour, and get a great view of the boats berthed in the Marina.
PM – Chill Out in Dún Laoghaire Town
6. Contemplate the Sea
Many visitors to our town make a beelines for the impressive DLR LexIcon. The views, especially from the windows overlooking our harbour, are spectacular and a great place to sit and relax!
7. Chillax in The People’s Park
The People’s Park located at the end of Upper George’s Street, and on the Coast Road (Windsor Terrace). It was developed by the Kingstown Town Commissioners at the end of the 19th Century, and features two victorian style water fountains, a recently redeveloped playground for kids and tea-rooms which are now home to Fallon & Byrne.
Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown Parks Department, always do a wonderful job of maintaining the flower beds when in bloom.
And the DLR CoCo People’s Park market is not one to be missed. Every Sunday throughout the year, artisan food producers, and craftspeople showcase their wares.
8. Treat Yourself
And what list about things to do in Dún Laoghaire would be complete without mentioning Ice Cream!
Teddys is quite literally the home of the 99 (their own words). They can be found throughout the town and harbour when the sun is shining (they have a lot of Ice Cream vans these days scattered around the town) or you could visit their store at Windsor Terrace, just beyond the People’s Park.
Or if you feel like taking a walk on the wild side, why not venture down to Scrumdiddly’s, where the boast about serving Ice Cream in 2,400 different combinations. That’s a lot of toppings to try!
PM – Have a Night Out in Dún Laoghaire Town
9. Catch a Show
Yep, Dún Laoghaire has got this one covered too! Whether you fancy a Play in The Pavilion, or visit one of the town’s pubs for some live music. The Purty Kitchen, McLoughlin’s & O’Neill’s have live music throughout the week. For a full overview of what’s on in Dún Laoghaire see our listings guide.
10. A Couple of Scoops by the Sea