Looking for something to do during your trip to Ireland? Here’s our guide to the top events in Dublin for families and couples, including food and music festivals, free events, gigs and theatre performances.
Culture Date with Dublin 8
When: 19th – 20th May 2018
Explore south of the river with this cultural and historical festival that celebrates the Dublin 8 district of the capital. Home to some of the city’s iconic landmarks, including the Kilmainham Gaol, the Irish National War Memorial Gardens and Christ Church Cathedral, Dublin 8 has a rich heritage and plenty of stories waiting to be discovered. Highlights of the neighbourhood-wide event include guided tours, family activities and new exhibitions.
Dublin Dance Festival 2018
When: 2nd – 20th May 2018
The Dublin Dance Festival showcases some of the best talent in Irish dancing, with international artists and choreographers coming together from all over the world to perform for audiences of all ages. The festival has been steadily growing since its beginnings in 2002 and is now one of the highlights in Irelands cultural calendar. It’s an event that fans of Riverdance would be mad to miss!
Gin Fusion Festival
When: 31st May – 3rd June 2018
Guinness might be Dublin’s most famous drink, but if you prefer a lighter summer tipple then make your way to the Gin Fusion gin festival. This free event is a must for gin lovers and lasts 4 days and nights, with plenty of workshops, tastings, pop-up markets, live music and food to enjoy.
Dublin Pride Festival
When: 21st – 30th June 2018
Since the city’s first parade in 1983, the Dublin LGBTQ+ Pride Parade has grown into one of the biggest in Europe, and Ireland’s second largest festival after St. Patrick’s Day. Last year’s event saw over 30,000 people take part, with floats, costumes and music throughout the day.
When: 12th – 13th May 2018
Ireland’s main fitness, health and wellness festival returns for another year and brings with it a host of famous professionals and celebrities. This is a fun and motivational event aimed at inspiring everyone from regular gym goers to those new to sport. Talks, fitness and yoga classes and mindfulness workshops are all included in the ticket price and there is a range of healthy food and drinks stalls, fun activities for kids and advice for new mums.
Dublin Quays Festival
When: 19th – 22nd July 2018
This free music and arts festival takes place in various venues along the River Liffey, in the centre of the capital, and offers all the fun of a summer festival in an easily accessible, urban location. Expect everything from live gigs, club night, spoken word performances and pop up events.
Battle For The Bay
When: 26th – 27th May 2018
Battle for the Bay is a weekend of fun for the whole family who can enjoy spectacular displays from some of Ireland’s best kite surfers, showing off their incredible skills and battling it out for the title of King or Queen of the Bay. As well as watersports, visitors can expect DJs, a vibrant beach market, fairground rides for the kids and beach volleyball tournaments.
Taste of Dublin
When: 14th – 17th June 2018
Dublin’s best event for foodies is a feast of exquisite dishes from some of the city’s hottest restaurants, beer and wine tasting, culinary talks and masterclasses from award-winning chefs. Artisanal stalls and bars will be offering plenty of tasty delicacies to eat and drink or take home with you.
Dublin 7s Festival
When: 25th – 26th May 2018
This family-friendly rugby festival promises to be a special occasional for everyone, whether you’re taking part or just watching the games. A full programme of sports, including strong man competitions and dodgeball, as well as music and food means there will be something here for all ages.
Red Bull Flugtag
When: 20th May 2018
The famous Red Bull Flugtag is back in Ireland for the first time in 7 years and is guaranteed to be a day of hairbrained fun and flying adventure. Set to take place in Dublin’s Dun Laoghaire harbour, competitors are challenged with building a home-made flying machine that will soar off the 6-metre flight deck into the air… or risk plunging into the sea!
Travelling to Dublin
Ferry to Dublin
The ferry is a popular option for travellers to Dublin, with journey times starting from about 1 hour 20 minutes when you leave from Holyhead Port in Wales.
Train to Dublin
Virgin Trains Rail & Sail tickets allow visitors to take the train from the UK to Ireland, with trains taking passengers to Holyhead Station where they can get a ferry across to Dublin Port.
Fly to Dublin
Dublin Airport is 5.4 miles (8.6 km) north of the city centre and various airlines fly direct to Dublin from UK airports, including British Airways, Aer Lingus and low-cost carriers Flybe and Ryanair. Pre-book your Dublin transfer from the port or airport with HolidayTaxis for a quick and easy journey direct to your hotel.