20 Best Things to Do in Dublin on a Rainy Day



Best Things to Do in Dublin on a Rainy Day

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Exploring Dublin’s delights on a rainy day? Our guide, “Discover the 20 Best Things to Do in Dublin on a Rainy Day,” is your perfect companion. Whether you’re a culture enthusiast, a foodie, or simply looking for indoor fun, we’ve got you covered. We delve into Dublin’s rich history and vibrant culture through its museums, libraries, and historic jails, ensuring your experience is both enlightening and enjoyable.

For those seeking variety, our compilation includes everything from whiskey and beer tours to immersive arts and escape rooms. Indoor attractions like cooking classes and unique bus experiences cater to your educational and entertainment needs, providing a fun and informative escape from the wet weather.

So, embrace Dublin’s rainy charm! Our list is designed to transform a gloomy day into an opportunity to discover the heart of the city. Whether you’re a local or a visitor, these activities promise to add a splash of excitement to your rainy day in Dublin.

Key Takeaways on Dublin Rainy Day Activities

  • Dublin offers diverse indoor activities for rainy days. The city provides a range of options from museums to cooking classes, ensuring there’s something for everyone.
  • Cultural experiences are a highlight in Dublin’s rainy-day itinerary. Exploring museums, libraries, and historic jails offers a deep dive into the city’s rich history and culture.
  • Food and drink enthusiasts have plenty to explore. Whiskey and beer tours are a great way to experience Dublin’s famous beverages and local flavors.
  • Interactive experiences are readily available. Activities like immersive arts and escape rooms offer engaging and entertaining indoor options.
  • Educational opportunities are part of Dublin’s indoor attractions. Cooking classes and unique bus experiences provide both fun and learning.
  • Rainy days in Dublin can enhance your travel experience. The guide transforms a gloomy day into an opportunity to discover Dublin’s heart and charm.

Exploring Dublin’s Museums

National Museum of Ireland exhibition hall with historical artifacts

Dublin City exemplifies a rich blend of history and culture, with its museums standing as proof of its vibrant past. The National Museum of Ireland, located in the city, is a must-visit for those visiting Dublin. The wildlife exhibits at the museum feature a diverse range of creatures, from butterflies and beetles to seals and the long-extinct giant Irish elk. The museum is a fascinating destination for animal enthusiasts. Marvel at the approximately two million scientific specimens that tell a fascinating story.

Another rainy day gem is EPIC The Irish Emigration Museum, a fascinating journey through Irish history. Located in the historic CHQ building, this museum uses interactive displays to show the incredible impact of Ireland on the world. You can discover influential Irish figures in:

  • Science
  • Literature
  • Film
  • Politics

The Little Museum of Dublin, housed in a beautiful Georgian mansion, provides an intimate setting where visitors can hear stories and experience the captivating storytelling of Dublin’s history coming alive.

Literary Havens: Libraries and Bookshops

Old Library at Trinity College with ancient books and wooden shelves

Even amidst the heaviest downpours, Dublin’s literary scene never fails to captivate book lovers. Start your journey with the Old Library at Trinity College. This historic treasure offers visitors a chance to see thousands of leather-bound books in its majestic Long Room and the famous Book of Kells.

The Marsh’s Library, the first public library in Ireland, offers a fantastic selection of books and manuscripts for visitors to explore. For book-shopping enthusiasts, Hodges Figgis and Gutter Bookshop are fantastic spots. These independent bookshops offer a wide range of books, from bestsellers to hidden gems. They are perfect places to spend a rainy day, getting lost in the enchanting world of literature.

Whiskey Distillery Tours

A whiskey distillery tour emerges as a top-notch activity in Dublin, particularly on wet weather days. Distilleries like Jameson Distillery Bow St, Teeling Distillery, and the Irish Whiskey Museum offer an engaging experience. When you visit the Jameson Experience at Bow St, you will have the opportunity to participate in a guided tasting of three distinctive Jameson whiskeys. After the tasting, you can also relax and enjoy a drink of your choice at their onsite bar..

At the Teeling Whiskey Distillery, see the stills in action and learn about the whiskey-making process. Wrap up your tour with a tasting session, making for an engaging experience, ideal for both beginners and connoisseurs. The Irish Whiskey Museum near Trinity College offers an interactive experience where you can immerse yourself in the rich history of Irish whiskey-making.

Guinness Storehouse Experience

Interior of Guinness Storehouse with brewing equipment

Regardless of the weather, the Guinness Storehouse remains an unmissable part of any Dublin itinerary. This amazing brewery provides an in-depth tour of the history of Ireland’s most famous drink. As you explore the museum, you’ll discover fascinating insights into the history of the Guinness family, the brewery, and the intricate process of making the famous stout.

The tour concludes at the Gravity Bar, offering a breathtaking panoramic view over the city. Known as the Sky Bar, this spot provides some of the most stunning views of the city and surrounding mountains. It’s the perfect place to enjoy a pint and take in the magnificent Dublin skyline, all while staying dry indoors.

Indoor Entertainment: Token Arcade and Jump Zone

Token and Jump Zone offer a delightful array of indoor games and activities. Token is an 18 and over video game bar, packed with nostalgia and old school games. It’s a fantastic place to spend a rainy day in Dublin, competing in friendly arcade games and enjoying a meal.

Jump Zone, on the other hand, is all about high-energy fun. As Europe’s first trampoline park, it offers thrilling and fun experiences for all ages. Try out free jump, dodge ball, and aerobics in their expansive facility.

Both venues offer fantastic indoor activities to keep the fun going, even when the weather outside is less than ideal.

Dublin’s Historic Gaols: Kilmainham and Dublinia

Kilmainham Gaol exterior with stone walls and barred windows

Delve into Dublin’s darker past with a visit to the city’s historic jails. Kilmainham Gaol offers a fascinating glimpse into Ireland’s struggle for independence. Here, visitors can explore the gaol’s past through an engaging tour led by knowledgeable guides. Known for its pivotal role in the Easter Rising, Kilmainham Gaol held leaders of several Irish rebellions.

Dublinia, on the other hand, takes you back to Dublin’s Viking and Medieval past. This incredible interactive museum provides an immersive journey through Dublin’s rich heritage, making it a fascinating experience for history buffs.

Art Galleries to Inspire

Art enthusiasts will find a sanctuary in Dublin’s diverse art galleries. The National Gallery of Ireland, the central repository of fine art in the country, showcases a collection of Irish and European art that is sure to inspire. The gallery currently hosts a diverse range of exhibitions, including Turner & Coastal Scenes, Irish Sign Language Tour, and Themed Tour: Depictions of Women in Art, among others.

For those with a penchant for the intersection of art and science, the Science Gallery is a must-visit. Offering a unique blend of art and science, this gallery stimulates curiosity and creativity through its exhibitions and events. One of the upcoming exhibitions, HUMAN+: THE FUTURE OF OUR SPECIES, promises to be an engaging exploration of future human evolution.

Unique Bus Experiences: Gravedigger and Afternoon Tea

Dublin offers an eclectic mix of themed bus tours for a distinctive city exploration. The Gravedigger Bus Tour, for instance, combines the city’s history with a touch of the supernatural. This spooky tour takes you around the darker parts of Dublin’s history, making for an intriguing experience.

On the other hand, for a more delightful and relaxing adventure, the Afternoon Tea Bus Experience is the perfect choice. Enjoy traditional Irish afternoon tea while being chauffeured past some of Dublin’s most iconic landmarks. This unique tour combines sightseeing with a culinary delight, making it a fantastic indoor activity.

Escape Room Adventures

Escape room adventures offer an exciting challenge to your problem-solving abilities. The Clockwork Key Escape Room and Incognito Escape Rooms offer a variety of themed escape room games for an unforgettable adventure. These rooms are designed to challenge your mind and teamwork skills, making for an exhilarating indoor activity.

From solving puzzles to uncovering hidden secrets, escape room challenges offer a unique blend of entertainment and intellectual stimulation. Whether you’re a seasoned escape artist or a first-timer, these adventures are certain to provide a memorable rainy day experience in Dublin.

Culinary Delights: Cooking Classes and Chocolate Factory Tours

Embrace Dublin’s passion for food through engaging cooking classes and enlightening chocolate factory tours. Dublin Cookery School and The Cake Cafe offer a variety of culinary experiences that cater to different tastes and skill levels. From Italian cooking to baking pastries and desserts, these classes offer hands-on training that will surely delight your taste buds.

For those with a sweet tooth, a tour at Butler’s Chocolate Experience is a must. You can delight in the chocolate-making process firsthand and even be treated to complimentary chocolates as part of the tour. These culinary activities offer a delicious way to spend a rainy day in Dublin.

Indoor Sports: Mini Golf and Trampoline Parks

Dublin provides a plethora of indoor sports activities for those aiming to maintain an active lifestyle, especially when experiencing Dublin on a rainy day. Rainforest Adventure Golf provides a thrilling and enjoyable mini-golf experience indoors, making it a great way to spend rainy days. With two 18-hole courses, you can challenge your friends or family for a friendly competition.

Jump Zone, Europe’s first trampoline park, offers a different kind of indoor fun. With a variety of activities, including free jump, dodge ball, and aerobics, Jump Zone is a great place to let loose and have some high-energy fun.

Irish Pubs and Traditional Music

Experiencing the inviting charm of Dublin’s Irish pubs is an essential part of any visit. The city’s pub culture is synonymous with lively traditional Irish music sessions and a strong emphasis on social interaction and community. Venues like Nancy Hands and The Brazen Head offer a great atmosphere to enjoy a pint while listening to traditional tunes.

Traditional music greatly enriches the vibrant atmosphere of Irish pubs, adding an authentic and lively touch to the overall experience. From lively fiddle tunes to soulful ballads, Dublin’s pubs offer a unique window into Irish culture. It’s the perfect way to spend a rainy evening in the city.

Silver Works Dublin: Create Your Own Ring

Crafting your own sterling silver ring at Silver Works Dublin offers a unique and memorable indoor activity. This workshop offers visitors the amazing opportunity to craft their own personalized ring with the guidance of an experienced professional.

From sawing and soldering to filing, hammering, and polishing, you’ll learn the basics of silver-smithing and take home a unique memento of your Dublin visit. Silver Works Dublin offers a one-of-a-kind experience that combines creativity, craftsmanship, and the opportunity to create a lasting memory.

Theater and Live Performances

Dublin’s engaging arts scene warrants attention, irrespective of the weather. The city is home to a number of theatres and live performance venues that cater to a range of artistic preferences. The Olympia Theatre, known for its diverse program of events, is just one of many venues offering an array of performances.

Whether you’re a fan of rock, pop, indie, blues, jazz, or traditional Irish music, Dublin’s live performance scene has something for everyone. So why not take a break from the rain and lose yourself in the magic of live theatre or music? Some popular venues in Dublin include:

  • The Olympia Theatre
  • The Academy
  • Whelan’s
  • Vicar Street
  • The Button Factory

Check out their websites for upcoming shows and events. Enjoy the vibrant music and theatre scene in Dublin!

Jeanie Johnston Tall Ship Experience

Anchored at Dublin’s Docklands, the Jeanie Johnston Tall Ship presents a remarkable journey into the history of the Irish Famine. The ship offers a poignant glimpse into the lives of emigrants fleeing the Famine for North America. Built in 1847, the Jeanie Johnston has a rich history and offers visitors an immersive experience into the courageous journey made by those seeking a better life.

The guided tour concludes with a visit to the ship’s museum, where you can further explore the hardships endured by the emigrants and the impact of the Irish Famine. This sobering yet educational experience is a valuable part of any Dublin visit, rain or shine.

Shopping Escapades

Dublin caters to shopping enthusiasts with its diverse retail options, ranging from mainstream chains to distinctive vintage treasures. Grafton Street, O’Connell Street, and Jervis Shopping Centre are just a few shopping hotspots where you can indulge in some retail therapy.

For vintage enthusiasts, Temple Bar is a treasure trove of pre-loved items. Lucy’s Lounge, a vintage shop with over 40 years in business, helps reduce waste in the fashion industry by repurposing used clothing into bags and unique wearable creations. It’s a fantastic way to spend a rainy afternoon in Dublin.

St. Patrick’s Cathedral and Christ Church Cathedral

Dublin’s rich history is profoundly reflected in its iconic religious landmarks. A visit to St. Patrick’s Cathedral and Christ Church Cathedral offers a unique window into the city’s past. According to legend, St. Patrick himself baptized Christian converts at what is now the site of St. Patrick’s Cathedral, making it a site of great religious and historical importance.

Christ Church Cathedral, founded nearly a millennium ago by Sitric, King of the Dublin Norsemen, is another must-visit. Its architecture and historical significance are truly captivating, and the 12th-century crypt offers a unique opportunity to explore the Treasures of Christ Church exhibit, showcasing almost a millennium of Irish worship. Not far from this iconic landmark, you’ll find St James’s Gate, another site steeped in history and worth exploring during your visit to Dublin.

River Liffey Cruise

Cruising along the River Liffey offers a delightful exploration of Dublin, all while staying dry. This 45-minute boat tour offers fascinating insights into the history of Dublin and allows you to see the city from a unique perspective.

From the arrival of the Vikings and the use of reclaimed land in the development of Dublin, the River Liffey Cruise offers a comprehensive overview of the city’s history. As the boat glides along the river, enjoy the view of various historical sites, landmarks, and bridges, each with its own fascinating story connected to Dublin’s rich heritage.

Croke Park Stadium Tour

A tour of Croke Park Stadium, the largest sports venue in Ireland and the headquarters for Gaelic games, is sure to captivate sports aficionados. The behind-the-scenes tour offers a unique opportunity to explore the VIP area, visit the team dressing rooms and walk out onto the pitch.

The tour also includes a visit to the GAA Museum within the stadium, which pays tribute to the history of Gaelic games. For any sports fan, the museum is a must-see with its rare artifacts and a hall of fame honoring the best players.

Chester Beatty Library

Concluding our list of rainy day activities, a visit to the Chester Beatty Library is a must. Located within the historic Dublin Castle, the library houses a vast collection of manuscripts and rare books from various world cultures. Visitors can explore exhibits that showcase beautiful religious texts from the world’s major religions, reflecting the rich cultural and spiritual heritage collected by Chester Beatty.

Frequently Asked Questions About Rainy Day Activities in Dublin

What do you do for fun when its raining?

Settle in and try indoor activities like reading, watching movies, or baking when it’s raining outside. Enjoy the cozy atmosphere!

Which museums in Dublin are free?

Dublin offers a variety of free museums that cater to diverse interests, from art and history to science and literature. Some of the notable ones include:

  1. The National Gallery of Ireland: Home to over 16,300 artworks including pieces by Caravaggio, Vermeer, Rembrandt, Monet, and Van Gogh.
  2. The Geology Museum in Trinity College: Features a collection of over 100,000 specimens, including Irish Silurian and Carboniferous invertebrates, Mesozoic ostracods, and Upper Palaeozoic miospores.
  3. The Garda Museum at Dublin Castle: Provides insight into the history of Ireland’s police force with a collection of artifacts, photographs, and memorabilia.
  4. The Hugh Lane Gallery: Offers a range of artworks including paintings, sculptures, and installations from Irish and international artists.
  5. The Custom House: Showcases various exhibitions related to Dublin’s history and architecture.
  6. James Joyce Tower and Museum: A literary landmark dedicated to James Joyce, featuring first editions, portraits, and personal items.
  7. National Library of Ireland: Contains over 12 million items, including books, manuscripts, maps, and photographs.
  8. The Chester Beatty Library: Renowned for its collection of 20,000 manuscripts, rare books, miniature paintings, and other artifacts from around the world.
  9. Irish Museum of Modern Art (IMMA): Ireland’s leading institution for modern and contemporary art, featuring a range of exhibitions.
  10. National Museum of Ireland: Encompasses four separate museums covering archaeology, decorative arts & history, natural history, and country life.
  11. Revenue Museum: Located in the crypt of the Chapel Royal at Dublin Castle, this museum offers an insight into the history of collecting duties and taxes in Ireland.
  12. Olivier Cornet Gallery: An art gallery featuring contemporary Irish and international artists.
  13. City Hall: A Georgian-style civic building with a multi-media exhibition, tours, and lectures.
  14. Gallery of Photography Ireland: Ireland’s foremost photography gallery and shop.

These museums offer a glimpse into Ireland’s rich cultural, historical, and artistic heritage, making them must-visit destinations for both tourists and locals. For specific visiting hours and more detailed information, it’s recommended to check the respective websites or contact the museums directly​​​​​​​​​​.

Can I tour the Guinness Storehouse on a rainy day?

Yes, you can still tour the Guinness Storehouse on a rainy day and enjoy the indoor tour of the history of Ireland’s famous drink with panoramic city views. Enjoy your visit!

What are some unique indoor activities in Dublin?

You can create your own sterling silver ring at Silver Works Dublin, take a spooky Gravedigger Bus Tour, or participate in escape room adventures at The Clockwork Key Escape Room or Incognito Escape Rooms for unique indoor activities in Dublin. Enjoy exploring these exciting options!

Can I explore Dublin’s history indoors?

Yes, you can definitely explore Dublin’s history indoors by visiting museums, historic gaols like Kilmainham Gaol and Dublinia, and taking a tour of Croke Park Stadium. Enjoy your indoor exploration of Dublin’s rich history!

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