There are several free things to do in Dublin despite its reputation as being an expensive city. Known for its rich heritage, pubs and friendly locals, Dublin is also a good base to travel around Ireland.

From its rich heritage to lively nightlife, it is one city that should be on your itinerary when travelling Europe. So we’ve put together the best and fun free things to do in Dublin to include on your Dublin itinerary.

Best Free Things To Do In Dublin


1. Take advantage of the free bikes in Dublin

Dublin is a walkable city but if walking is not your thing while sightseeing, taking advantage of the free bike is a good alternative. Dublinbikes allows you to use the bike for free for the first 30 minutes. After 30 minutes, you have to pay around €50 cents per 30 minutes. You can also get a 3-day ticket at 5 euros to save money.

Source: Christine of Ireland Travel Guides

2. Take a picture with the wild deer in Phoenix Park


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Phoenix Park is an urban park in Dublin, located north of River Liffey. The park has large areas of grassland and tree-lined avenues which makes it appealing for the wild fallow deer. These deer made the park their home since the 17th century. To plan your visit, check the park’s operating hours here.

3. Trace your Celtic heritage in the National Library

Want to do something different in Dublin for free? Why not check if you have a Celtic heritage in National Library. Whether it’s for fun or curiosity, this service offered by National Library can help you trace your Irish roots.  No need to book an appointment. Just make sure to check their operating hours here.

4. Join a music session in Cobblestone


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Music is a big part of Irish tradition and one of the things that Ireland is known for. Want proof? There are tons of Irish musicians and bands famous around the world. I personally grew up listening to Irish music in my sleepy small town in the Philippines. So if you want to explore this part of Irish culture, head to Cobblestone to listen to traditional Irish music with talented locals. To check the upcoming events, check out their website here.

5. Explore the Glasnevin Cemetery


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Glasnevin Cemetery is a large cemetery in Dublin, Ireland.  It holds the graves and memorials of several notable figures in Ireland and was opened to the public for the first time on 1832. The cemetery is also considered as one of the top attractions in Dublin due to its rich history.

6. Escape the city at National Botanic Garden

Adjacent to the Glasnevin Cemetery is a world-class botanic garden. The National Botanic Garden is home to several plant species and it is considered as the center of horticultural research and training in Dublin. The National Herbarium is part of the National Botanic Garden and it houses over 20,000 samples of plant products, including fruits, seeds, wood, fibers, plant extracts, and artifacts.

7. Visit Trinity College


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We have almost all experienced times in our lives where we needed a way to spend our time…without spending our money! If you are familiar with this struggle and happen to be near Dublin, Ireland, then fear not! The internationally recognize Science Gallery offers precisely that. These free exhibitions offer a variety of events including music performances, film screenings, workshops and more. Also, the themes of the exhibitions change three times per year. This makes for fresh new material on a regular basis.

The only thing they ask is to warn them ahead of time if you are bringing a large group. If you do happen to stumble across a bit of extra cash, Trinity College also offers a few other low-cost options including guided tours, a zoological museum, and the Book of Kells exhibition. And if your budget allows for trinkets and/or food, you will be delighted to find a gift shop and a variety of places to eat.

Source: Kaila Yu of Nom List

8. Learn history from the Kilmainham jail


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Kilmainham jail is one of the best locations to go and visit in Dublin because it is the place in Ireland to understand some of the recent histories about how Ireland finally gained independence from the British.

Entrance to the superb museum and the old courthouse is free of charge and a one hour guided trip around the actual prison itself is not that expensive, but extremely good value as you will come away with much to think about.

The museum describes the years before and after the 1916 Easter uprising, and when you do the tour of the prison itself, you see the places where the signatories to the proclamation of independence were kept before they were cold blooded executed by the British the same year. This event changed the future of Ireland by the influence of national opinion and makes this place a MUST SEE for lovers of history and visitors to Dublin / Ireland.

Source: Thassia of Family Off Duty

9. Check out the Museum of Natural History

The Museum of Natural History in Dublin is free to enter and is home to over 20,000 preserved species. The real charm of the museum is that it has barely changed since it was founded in the 1800s. All of the species are displayed in beautiful Victorian cabinets and the layout is compact.

Visiting the museum feels like stepping back in time, with the taxidermy and displays showing their vintage nature. The first floor of the museum, called the Irish floor, is dedicated to species were or can be found on the island of Ireland. You can learn about various insects, mammals and marine life that call Ireland home. The crowning jewel is the massive skeletons of the 10,000-year-old Irish Elk that guard the entry.

The top floors show a diverse range of animals and insects from around the world. This quirky stop is a great way to learn about Irish history and is the perfect activity for a rainy afternoon.

Source: Kassie of The Fly Away Life 

10. Relax in St. Stephen’s Green


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If you want to connect with nature without leaving the city, head to St. Stephen’s Green, a well-manicured urban park. Though the land was once the setting of public executions, the green now offers a tranquil respite from the bustle of the city and adds a welcome change of pace to any Dublin itinerary. Take a stroll along the paved walking paths and admire the Victorian landscape (and work off some of that pub food at the same time!).

When you’re worn out, take a seat on one of the benches and simply enjoy the peaceful atmosphere, do some people watching, and relieve your aching feet. For families—particularly those with energetic children—a trip to the playground is a must.

And if you visit in the summer, you may be lucky enough to catch an outdoor concert. But don’t worry if you’re traveling in the off-season. The park is impressive year-round. Keep in mind that St. Stephen’s Green is only open during daylight hours, so plan your visit accordingly.

Source: Carrie Camp of Maple & Maps 

Affordable Accommodations in Dublin

Abbey Court Hostel is a hostel located at the center of Dublin. It is known for its quirky interior design and social vibe. The hostel offers an eat-all-you-can breakfast, comfortable bed, entertainment and game room, music room, lounge, and free walking tour. For rates and reviews of Abbey Court Hostel, click here.

The Leeson Lodge is another alternative for a cheap accommodation in Dublin if a hostel is not your thing. The lodge is located near the Dublin canal, St Stephen‘s Green (a public park) and pubs. They offer a single room for a reasonable rate. For rates and reviews of the Leeson Lodge, click here

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