An Irish Girl’s Nightlife Guide to Dublin

You could find me parting with ladyboy’s in Bangkok, on the world’s fastest rollercoaster in Abu Dhabi, hiking the Alps, dune bashing the Dubai Desert or partying like a mad woman on home soil in Ireland. I lap up the new cultures, fresh faces and bar hopping in familiar and unfamiliar countries. Who doesn’t? Being Irish, parting and ridiculous levels of drinking is embedded in my blood.

I’m a strong believer that no place knows how to party, quite like Ireland does. After five years of traveling and partying in almost every country I have stood in, Ireland still come out as king of the party troops. Where else in the world is drinking used as an excuse for every occasion, be it a death, a new family member, or simply just because it’s Monday?

We are the drunkards of the globe and strangely I think we are quite proud of our outrageous drinking behaviors. We are well versed worldwide for our drinking culture and our experience in having “the craic” (downright fun times and absolute banter). Being leading experts in the field of partying I don’t even have to ask, I know you want to join us in the Emerald Isle for a session?

I moved to Dublin, Ireland’s capital city while I was studying my BA in Social Care. It was during that time I delved into Dublin’s endless nightlife scene (a little too much) and fell head over heels (quite literally) with this extremely social and friendly city. I would say in my three years living in Dublin I seen the inside of more pubs, bars and clubs than any lecturer hall so I want to share my savvy knowledge on Dublin’s hotspots with you.

When you come to Dublin you will mix with Irish locals and students as Dublin is a young people’s city. Dublin always receives a huge influx of tourists all year round who want to party like the Irish and maybe see some historic sights (should you be able to tear yourself away from the bar stool that is). Taking yourself to a traditional, old man style Irish pub is a great way to meet the funniest and wisest characters who know drinking here like the back of their hand (Older Irish people are fascinating storytellers too, especially a few pints deep). Stags Head at 1 Dame Court, Dublin 2 is the ideal location to source the storytellers.

The legal drinking age in Ireland is 18 so on any occasion you could be clinking glasses and screaming Sláinte (good health and cheers) with an 18-80 year old(stranger things have happened). Depending on where you choose to party in Dublin there are some dress code restrictions in place. Guys tend to wear collared shirts and generally smart shoes. Girls get fairly dolled up for nights out wearing heels and dresses (along with copious amounts of fake tan, layers of makeup and hair extensions). Basically make some sort of an effort and you will be grand (term used daily in Ireland).

Even though most of you who are coming here will be in travel mode, you might look a tad out of place if you rock up to a Dublin nightclub with a sleeveless top on, shorts and flip-flops (plus your goanna freeze).

Dublin is quite an expensive city to drink in but I can assure you totally worth all the euros you will spend. The average price of a pint in Dublin is around € 5.00 and €4.50 for a glass of wine. A spirit with a mixer here will also set you back around €4.50. Naturally one of the most common drinks to sample here is Guinness. It’s an absolute sin to leave Ireland and say you haven’t downed a pint of the creamy black stuff. Head over to the Guinness storehouse, a landmark in Dublin where you see how the drink is produced and can even pull your own pint (accompanied by a certificate of your achievements).

guinness-beer

However I must pre warn you that a nightlong Guinness session could lead to a lot of time spent in the bathroom the next day (if you catch my drift). Another firm favorite is Irish whiskey. Jameson and Paddy Powers are two of Ireland’s most loved brands and the ideal beverage to warm a tummy on a cold Irish day. My dad is also a believer that it is a curer of many illnesses, claiming a shot of the strong stuff can rid cold and flu symptoms (what a wise man he is).

If you love a crisp refreshing cider, then Bulmer’s cider (known worldwide as Magner’s) is the go to beverage in Dublin. If you get your hands on a drink called Poitín (you will either have the best or worst night of your life-great odds). This lethal concoction is made from barley and potatoes (of course) and some can be a dangerously high 95% alcohol. The drink is technically banned in Ireland but the Irish locals will surly point you in the direction of someone brewing the stuff for their own personal tasting. Trust me this stuff is like nothing you’ve ever drank before (do not consume in excess).

Dublin has a spectacular music scene with some world class live music venues. Our traditional DI II E I music never fails to have everyone in the pub up on their feet and leaping round the dance floor like a lunatic. Brace yourself for talented musicians getting together with fiddles, tin whistles and bodhrans. One of the best places to experience a traditional fiddley music session is O’Donoughes on Merrion Row in Dublin 2.

murphys-dublin

Clubs in Dublin at nighttime will play all your latest chart releases, everything from pop to hip hop, RnB and dance classics(DJ’s in Dublin are really friendly so if you have any favourite’s you would like to hear. Simply ask). Smack bang in the city center is where you will find an abundance of pubs and watering holes. Most clubs will charge a fee for entry and depending on the venue could be €10.00 to €20.00.

Where to Party in Dublin

Temple Bar

Temple bar is hands down the most popular bar area for tourists in all of Ireland. This area boasts a unique charm due to its maze of cobbled streets with talented musicians dotting the walkways. Here you will find traditional Irish bars, eateries and some rather bizarre shops. This pedestrianised area is the best place to bar hop and be amongst a lively atmosphere day and night. Do not miss this area!

The following is a list of the top clubs and bars in Dublin. These are my personal recommendations but I am 100% confident you will be highly impressed and wasted rolled into one.

temple-bar

Copper Face Jacks

Copper Face Jack’s has been hailed as one of the best nightclubs in all of Dublin time and time again. Coppers(as it is termed by locals) is open 7 nights a week and is where the most dedicated party animals give it socks and drink the place dry. You’re bound to make friends for life here and apparently getting lucky in Coppers is inevitable (just saying). You will meet the craziest creatures of all ages here and the place is over flowing with guards (known as police elsewhere) who are off duty and nurses. Coppers is one of those places where anything could happen, you’ll probably lose your dignity and all your money but you are guaranteed a solid good night on the tiles. Open daily from 11.00pm- late.

CopperFace Jacks,
29-30 Harcourt Street,
Dublin 2
(ask anybody in Dublin and they will be more than able to direct you here)

Café En Seine

Café En Seine is one of Dublin’s more lavish and upmarket drinking spots (the complete opposite of Coppers). Interestingly Café En Seine wasn’t always a nightlife venue, previously being a bicycle shop and a doctor’s surgery. Maybe it’s these past roles it played that gives it all the charm it holds today. Serving an extensive range of delicious cocktails and with a mouthwatering food menu, Café En Seine is all all rounder spot. Spanning over three floors, with décor to die for, this is one hell of a stylish place to party. I would recommend their vodka martinis and frozen daiquiris in large amounts. Opening hours are Mon–Tue: 12.00–00.00 / Wed-Sat: 12.00–15.00 / Sun 12.00 – 23.00

Café En Seine
40 Dawson Street
Dublin 2

Xico

Xico is a party haven I stumbled upon recently and is the new found love of many party goers in Dublin. An underground Mexican styled bar serving cleverly themed cocktails. The bar staff here are highly entertaining and the whole place has a relaxed laid back ambiance. It’s so laid back they even encourage dancing on tables and chairs (you know your onto a winner here). Open from Mon- Sat from 5.00pm- late.

Xico
143 Lower Baggot Street
Dublin 2 

Johnnie Foxes

If you feel like getting out of the city and experiencing one of Ireland’s oldest and most traditional pubs, the Johnnie Foxes is the place to be. About a 25 minute drive from the city of Dublin, Johnnies is also the highest pub in Ireland situated on top of the Dublin Mountains. There is live music here every night of the week and a “hooley night” which includes a dinner and an Irish dancing show. For €5.00 each way Johnnie Foxes runs a shuttle bus service to take you to and from Dublin city. Both the exterior and interior of Johnnies is as Irish as you get with open fires and all sorts of trinkets adorning the walls. Open Mon-Thu 11.00am – 23.30pm, Fri- Sat 11.00pm – 00.30 and Sun 12.00- 23.00

Johnnie Fox’s Pub
Glencullen
Co. Dublin

johnnie_foxs_pub_glencullen

Porterhouse

Located along the cobbled street of stunning Temple Bar, Porterhouse is Ireland’s first brewery bar. There is numerous Porterhouse establishments located around Dublin, stretching as far as London and New York. I mean what’s better than coming to Ireland and sampling some hand crafted Irish beer?. They brew in small batches for an even better taste. Open Mon-Wed : 11.30-00.00,Thurs 11.30-13.00,Fri-Sat : 11.30-14.00,Sun : 12.00-00.00

The Porterhouse Temple Bar
16-18 Parliament Street
Dublin 2

The Marker Hotel Rooftop

This one is for you flash packers. A swanky rooftop bar overlooking the docklands area of Dublin. It feels as luxurious as it looks and is not the usual set up for Dublin considering it is one of few rooftop bars found in the city. On a nice, warm evening (there rare come by in Ireland but they do happen) this is potentially one of the best spots in all of Dublin. Even if the weather is not permitting, the staff give you blankets to keep warm while you bask in 360 views come rain, hail or shine. Opening hours Wed + Fri 5.00 to 23.00, Sat 12.00 to 23.00 and Sun 3.00 to 21.00.

The Marker Hotel Rooftop
Grand Canal Square, Docklands, Dublin 2 

The Wright Venue

The Wright Venue is one heck of a clubbing experience. It has hosted some of the world’s top DJ’s and superstars from Rhianna, 50 cent and Duke Dumont to name a few. Over three floors you will encounter high class sound and lightening systems, a variety of music from 70’s, 80’s and 90’s and a VIP rooftop penthouse and gardens. The Wright Venue gives some of the biggest clubs in Ibiza a run for their money. Open Fri + Sat from 10.00 – 14.30.

The Wright Venue.
Airside South Quarter
Co. Dublin

Palace

Palace nightclub is sure to guarantee you a great night out located in the Camden Deluxe Hotel in the heart of Dublin. It stays open till the early hours of the morning and provides great music and fun for hours. Over two floors there will be dazzling light shows and many areas to boogie. Open daily from 12.00 till late.

Camden Deluxe Hotel,
84 – 87 Lower Camden Street,
Dublin 2

Let’s face it no matter what pub, bar or club you step inside in Dublin, you’re going to have a cracker of a time. Considering as a nation, us Irish are said to have the gift of the gab, here are some common phrases to help you mingle with us on any Irish drinking session:

  • “The Jack’s” (toilet or bathroom)
  • “Minerals” (soft drink, not that you will need to sample any of them in Ireland)
  • “Ossified” (extremely drunk)
  • “Chips” (French Fries)
  • “I will yea” (means you definitely won’t. Confusing right?)
  • “Banjaxed” (broken)
  • “Culchie” (person from the countryside)
  • Feck off (Go away politely)
  • “On the lash” (out drinking)

Before coming to Ireland head over to www.travelorlabout.com, if I’m not off wandering the globe and happen to be in Ireland, connect with me and lets go get hammered, locked and half cut(all words translate to drunk in Ireland) together!!

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