24 Things to do in Dublin at Night to Have a Good Time

I challenge anyone to visit Dublin and not enjoy the vibrant eclecticism of Ireland’s capital city. 

When the sun sets, parts of Dublin come to life, giving locals and visitors a taste of its famous culture and hospitality. 

After dark, you can soak up the atmosphere of one of Ireland’s oldest pubs, visit a museum, tap your feet to some traditional Irish tunes, or showcase your talents at a karaoke night. 

Dublin’s nightlife is as diverse as everything else in the city, so swap your pajamas for dancing shoes and explore!

Is Dublin Dangerous at night?

I never felt unsafe in Dublin, despite being there alone. People were friendly and helpful, especially when I was struggling to find my hotel during a typical Dublin downpour! 

Is Dublin Dangerous at night

It can be a bit nerve-wracking heading out after dark in a strange city, especially if you’re alone, but Dublin is a safe and welcoming city where you can stroll around quite freely. 

As in any city, there are potential dangers, so you need to keep your wits about you and steer clear of poorly lit streets. 

Stick to popular areas like Grafton Street, St Stephen’s Green, Temple Bar, and Trinity College,  and avoid those with higher crime rates, like Ballymun, Pearse Street, and Dublin West. 

What is Dublin Nightlife Famous for?

Dublin is a vibrant city at any time of the day, but at night it comes alive with the sound of traditional Irish music

This sound is synonymous with another significant part of Dublin nightlife – its pub culture. Many locals and visitors while away their evenings in one of the city’s 772 pubs, drawn in by warm fires, friendly faces, and a perfect pint of Guinness (or two).

What is the Main Nightlife Street in Dublin?

During the day, visitors and tourists flock to Grafton Street for the shops and street entertainment, but at night things are a bit more dispersed. 

Many tourists head to the Temple Bar area, but the area between Grafton Street and George Street is gradually becoming more popular, thanks to its bohemian-style cocktail bars and cozy chill-out zones. 

What is There To Do in Dublin at Night?

There’s no better way to experience the heart of Dublin than to sip a pint of Guinness while listening to live music in a traditional Irish pub, and that’s how many visitors spend their evenings. 

What is There To Do in Dublin at Night

If that sounds too laidback, you could try one of its upmarket cocktail bars or glitzy nightclubs, which will keep you dancing until dawn. 

More cultural activities include late-night openings at some of the city’s museums and art galleries and candlelit concerts at St Patrick’s Cathedral. 

Dublin also has family-friendly activities like escape rooms, ghost tours, live music and comedy, and quirky late-night eateries.

The Best Pubs in Dublin

Dublin is famous for its pub culture, which is hardly surprising as it has around 772 pubs, ranging from old traditional pubs like The Brazen Head to iconic bars like The Temple Bar Pub. 

They all serve an excellent pint of Guinness, often with some live music to help wash it down and some mouth-watering pub grub for when a liquid diet is no longer enough. 

Some pubs are perfect for lunch, or a lazy afternoon in the beer garden, while others only really come into their own once the sun goes down. 

We’ve chosen three pubs that we think represent Dublin’s famous pub culture and give visitors a chance to join in the local revelry:

#1 The Brazen Head

During the day, The Brazen Head popular amongst tourists and history lovers who want to enjoy a Guinness at the oldest pub in Dublin. 

When night falls, however, the vibe starts to change, and by 9 pm, live musicians have the whole pub tapping their feet and swaying to their traditional Irish tunes. 

#2 The Temple Bar Pub

I couldn’t resist a visit to the Temple Bar pub, despite it’s reputation for being overly touristy, and I loved every minute of it. 

The service was great, the atmosphere laid back, and the music toe-tappingly good. It’s also worth visiting the beer garden, where the bronze busts representing Ireland’s six river gods offer a curious insight into Ireland’s cultural past.  

#3 John Kavanagh’s (The Gravediggers)

This quiet little pub dates back to 1833 and has lots of old-world charm. This isn’t the place to go if you want to dance your socks off, but if you aim to find the best Guinness in town, John Kavanagh’s should definitely be on your bucket list!

Best Late Night Tourist Attractions

Head over to the National Gallery on a Thursday night, and you can wander around the exhibitions until 8.30 pm. It costs nothing to enter the gallery, which is home to an extensive collection of Irish and European art dating back to the 1300s. 

Best Late Night Tourist Attractions

Credit to Sailko via CC Attribution 3.0

#2 Ghost Tours 

Ghosts, gods, faeries, and supernatural beings all play a part in Irish mythology and these tours will introduce you to some of the best-known stories and characters that populate Dublin’s cultural history. 

A walking tour will take you along dark cobblestoned streets where the likes of The Dolocher once preyed on its innocent victims.  

#3 The Temple Bar Night Market

From May to September, the Temple Bar area celebrates the warmer weather and long evenings, and every Thursday, they take to the streets to meet the visitors and sell their wares. 

You’ll find a wide assortment of goods at the Temple Bar Night Market, from handmade soaps to wooden toys, jewelry to sculptures. 

Chat with the stall holders, soak up the atmosphere, and show the locals your support by picking out a souvenir to take back home.  

Best Live Music

Regardless of the time of year, Dublin hums along to the sound of live music. Nearly all of Dublin’s pubs offer live musical entertainment at least once a week, with many hosting local musicians every night. Some of the best places to go to listen to live music in Dublin include:

#1 The Cobblestone 

The Cobblestone is a traditional bar with dark paneled walls and stools to perch on at the busy bar. It may not look like much, but it’s here that some internationally acclaimed artists began their careers. 

The Cobblestone

Credit to William Murphy via CC Attribution-Share Alike 3.0

The Irish folk band, The Chieftains, started here in the Sixties, and it remains the best place to see the latest talent in Ireland. 

Whether you want to sway to traditional ballads or tap your feet to some high-tempo reels, the Cobblestone is the place to go. 

#2 Whelan’s 

Whelan’s may not be very big, with room for just 450 people, but its performers pack a serious punch! It’s a great place to catch the latest YouTube stars or to see more experienced performers try their hand at something new. 

Ed Sheeran played there last year, and the English singer-songwriter Robyn Hitchcock performed there just last month. A convivial atmosphere and friendly crowd make the music sound even better!

#3 3Arena

It may not have the atmosphere of Whelan’s or the reputation of The Cobblestone, but it’s the best place to see big-budget acts perform live. 

This impressive venue can host up to 13,000 people, and its 2023 line-up includes Elton John, Macklemore, and Snoop Dogg. 

Best Whiskey Tastings

The first whiskey distilled in Ireland was made in 1405, so the Irish have had plenty of time to perfect the art. 

Whether you’re already a connoisseur or don’t know your single malt from your single grain, the best whiskey-tasting tours promise to inform and entertain. 

#1 Dublin Whiskey Tours 

This tour will take you on a journey through Ireland’s whiskey history, from the monks who perfected the art of distilling it to the rebel moonshiners who introduced it to the masses.

Dublin Whiskey Tours

During the tour, you’ll visit two or three whiskey bars and sample five premium whiskeys while a whiskey sommelier explains the subtleties of each one.

Tours are between one and a half to two hours, and if you want to go after dark, you’ll need to sign up for the deluxe tour that starts at 7.30 pm.

#2 Dublin Whiskey Experience 

This historical whiskey tour takes you into an area once known as the ‘Golden Triangle’ because the city’s three main distilleries were situated there. 

From there, you’ll head onto some of Dublin’s oldest pubs to sample five different whiskeys and learn about the whiskey-making process.  

Dublin Whiskey Experience runs these two-hour tours every Thursday, Friday, and Saturday, starting at 4 pm.

#3 The Irish Whiskey Museum 

The Irish Whiskey Museum’s daily tours explore the history of Irish whiskey and the critical role it played in Ireland’s history. 

The Irish Whiskey Museum

At the end of the tour, you get to sample three or four different whiskeys before heading up to the bar to try a few more! 

The museum offers three different tours during the day, and the latest you can book for is either 5.30 pm or 6 pm. On the 6 pm blending tour, you’ll not only sample various whiskeys, but you’ll also get the chance to blend your own unique whiskey blend. 

Best Clubs

New legislation from the Irish government means that Dublin clubs could soon keep their doors open until 6 am, giving you even more time to enjoy the music and mayhem of Dublin’s best clubs. 

#1 The Workman’s Club

This historic nightclub is situated in an old Georgian building that once served as the City of Dublin Working Men’s Club. These days, it’s more famous for its live music, alternative DJ sets, and open karaoke nights. 

The multi-floor building has six different areas, including a main room, a stage, a couple of bars, and a rooftop terrace.  

The Workman’s Club is open from 5 pm until 3 pm daily.

#2 Pygmalion

This lively club is in the heart of Dublin’s Creative Quarter, and just five minutes from some of the best bars and cocktail lounges. 


The club is packed with plants, which makes you feel as if you’re partying in a rainforest, and the music varies from disco to house and techno. There’s also a restaurant and cocktail bar on the premises.

Pygmalion is open from 3 pm to 3 am daily, and you can book a table or a ticket for the club online. 

#3 Copper Face Jack’s 

This is one of Dublin’s most famous nightclubs and for good reason. Since opening in 1995, it’s established itself as one of the best clubs in Ireland and features various different spaces where you can dance, relax, or chat with friends. 

Sadly, this club has slightly shorter opening hours than most, and the evening only kicks off at 9 or 10 pm and ends at 2.30 am, except on Sundays when the doors close at 1 am.

Best Cocktail Bars

A quieter and arguably more sophisticated way to enjoy Dublin’s nightlife is to check out some of its cocktail bars and speakeasies. 

#1 Vintage Cocktail Club 

Hidden behind a discreet doorway, this cozy, intimate cocktail bar is reminiscent of the illegal 1920s speakeasies. 

Snuggle by the roaring fire, or enjoy the views from the rooftop bar while sipping on an expertly shaken cocktail. 

The extensive menu features a range of cocktails, from classics to more obscure blends. From what little I can recall from my last visit, the martinis and manhattans are works of art! 

#2 Peruke & Periwig    

Peruke & Periwig specializes in producing classic cocktails with a modern twist, so you should expect the unexpected. 

After a couple of cocktails, you won’t want to leave the snug atmosphere, and nor do you have to –  the Peruke $ Periwig has an elegant restaurant where you can enjoy a unique dining experience. 

#3 The Blind Pig Speakeasy 

This underground prohibition bar started out as a pop-up in 2003 but proved so popular it became a permanent fixture. 

Access is via a secret entrance that befits a prohibition bar, and once inside, you’ll feel like you’ve escaped into an underground world complete with stone walls and 1920s chic. 

The extensive cocktail menu includes some quirky blends like the seaweed-infused whiskey of the Dillisk Old Fashioned and the lemon curd and whiskey combination of the Breakfast of Champions. 

The Blind Pig is table service only, so a prior booking is highly recommended. Once you’ve secured a seat, you’ll be treated to exceptional service and live entertainment reminiscent of the jazz age. 

Best Dublin Rooftops

Staring out over a city at night gives you a whole different perspective on the place. In the winter, Dublin’s Christmas lights transform it into a multicolored fairyland, and in summer, you can enjoy a cocktail while watching the sun make its gradual descent, only fading away after 10 pm.

#1 The Rooftop Lounge at the Anantara Marker Hotel

This rooftop lounge enjoys some of the most spectacular views over the city, stretching out across the docklands to the sea beyond. 

Recline on one of the stylish yet comfortable sofas and treat yourself to a carefully constructed cocktail or perfectly chilled glass of wine. 

You may not want to get too comfortable, though, as the prices are pretty steep.

#2 The Gravity Bar at the Guinness Storehouse 

From the top of the Guinness Storehouse, you can see every inch of the city, from the Wicklow Mountains to Dublin Bay, and the building’s design makes you feel as though you’re in a spaceship floating high above the city. 

The bar had a challenging start, opening just as the COVID pandemic closed down much of the world, but now it’s ready to thrive. What better place to enjoy a pint of the black stuff than in the very place it’s brewed to perfection? 

#3 Sophie’s Rooftop Restaurant at The Dean

This glasshouse restaurant gives you a 360° view of the city without exposing you to the elements. It stays open late, so you can enjoy the starlit skies when the weather’s clear and soak up the relaxed vibe until 10 pm. 

If you want Something Different

Break away from the pub culture, and you’ll discover that Dublin has all sorts of fun and quirky activities to keep you entertained after dark. 

#1 The Irish Dance Party 

At the Irish Dance Party, you can put yourself to the test with an Irish dancing class or sit back and watch the professionals perform. 

The Irish Dance Party

You can book tickets online either for dinner and a show or for lessons from professional dancers who’ll teach you three simple Irish dances while talented musicians provide the accompaniment.  

#2 Escape Boats 

You’ve heard of Escape Rooms, right? Well, in Dublin, these rooms are located on boats moored at the Grand Canal Dock. 

The aim is to escape onto dry land by solving puzzles, cracking codes, and finding your way out before it’s too late. This immersive experience is available for groups of between 2 and 16 players, and the last game starts at 8.15 pm.

#3 Bingo at the George

The George is one of Dublin’s top LGBT pubs, and on Sunday night, it comes alive with cries of “Two little ducks” and “Knock at the Door.” 

Bingo at the George

That’s right, Sunday night is bingo night at The George, and it’s hosted by none other than The George’s very own Shirley Temple Bar! 

It kicks off at 8 pm and runs for a couple of hours, after which you can dance the rest of the night away.

Before You Go

Although the pub culture tends to dominate Dublin’s nightlife, if you step away from the Temple Bar neighborhood and think outside the box, you’ll find all manner of things to keep you entertained. 

Live music is performed every night of the week, and almost every genre imaginable can be heard at one venue or another. There are also sporting events, late-opening art exhibitions, traditional Irish dancing, and ghost tours to enjoy. 

Dublin’s a safe and friendly city, which makes exploring it at night a pleasurable experience. There’s so much to do after the sun sets that you might want to keep a day or two free to recover from your nighttime excursions!

Nicky Hoseck

"Like many so-called Brits, I have a bit of Irish and a bit of Scottish in my blood, which is possibly where the red hair comes from. I’ve been fascinated by the history of Ireland for years, since I discovered the story of the Irish Pirate Queen, Grace O’Malley.

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