When most people envision a trip to Dublin, they think of a whirlwind of Guinness, whiskey, and pub hopping—and they’re not wrong. Dublin is home to nearly 800 pubs and bars across the city, and the drinking culture is undoubtedly one of the draws.
Whether you’re hoping to check out the oldest pub in the city or you want to score a spot that’ll allow you to mingle with the locals in the Celtic capital, below you’ll find some of Dublin’s best classic Irish pubs to explore.
John Kavanagh (Gravedigger’s Pub)
Colloquially known as Gravedigger’s Pub, this Dublin institution dates back to 1833—a time when gravediggers from neighbouring Glasnevin Cemetery would stop by for a pint of Guinness on their break. Locals will tell you that it has since become a home for ghosts but don’t let that deter you. Recently, Gravediggers Pub won the award for the Best Community Pub in Ireland—it’s not uncommon to see the entirety of the pub—friends and strangers alike celebrating—a birthday or having a good ‘craic’ together.
The Brazen Head
While you’re in town, be sure to make a stop at the oldest pub in Dublin (it dates back to at least 1613). This indoor-outdoor establishment guarantees a good time. With handfuls of different rooms, nooks and crannies to settle in with a pint, and live trad music throughout the place, this sprawling pub will make you reevaluate your local pub back home.
The Long Hall
Dublin just does pubs well. The Long Hall is exactly what it sounds like—one long, single-roomed pub; it’s well-loved, with a perfectly preserved Victorian atmosphere. Grab a pint of Guinness and post up at the bar for a bit. You’re guaranteed to meet some interesting characters—or at least have a good chat with the bartender.
The Stag’s Head
Skip the Temple Bar tourist traps and head to The Stag’s Head. A swirling combination of locals and visitors alike, this traditional Irish pub is a great spot to start the night. Records of the pub date back to 1770 and is well-loved for its Victorian interior and friendly bar staff.
The Bernard Shaw
For a slightly more contemporary spot, head to Bernard Shaw. This indoor-outdoor beer garden is much bigger than it looks from the street. Enter through a small front pub, walk down the hall and into the sprawling back terrace, complete with a double-decker bus serving up pizza.