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Dublin, Ireland ranks as one of the most famous cities in the world. Steeped in history and boasting iconic attractions, Dublin has long attracted writers, intellectuals and travelers. Spending 3 days in Dublin, Ireland is the perfect amount of time to get acquainted with the city – and we’ll show you exactly how to do it in our perfect Dublin Itinerary!
3 Days in Dublin: FAQs for your Dublin Travel Itinerary
Before we get to our list of what to do in Dublin, we want to cover a few of the most frequently asked questions about planning a trip to the Emerald Isle.
What are the Top Things To Do in Dublin, Ireland?
Dublin has a reputation as a party city – and there are heaps of bars and pubs in Dublin for visitors who want to drink in the festive atmosphere. That said, there are many other incredible activities in Dublin – from world-class museums to scenic Irish coastline to ancient relics.
Our itinerary outlines 3 perfect days in Dublin so that you can experience the best it has to offer!
Can I Plan a Dublin Itinerary with Kids?
Absolutely! Although our Itinerary for Dublin in 3 Days is not specific to family travel, we include many kid-friendly attractions throughout the trip plan.
Is a Trip to Dublin Expensive?
Yes, it can be…but it doesn’t have to be. Airfare and accommodations will likely be your biggest expenditures (and we share tips on how to save money on both at the end of the article). Beyond those costs, however, your 3 days in Dublin, Ireland can be fairly affordable.
Is the Dublin Pass Worth It?
If you are planning on visiting ticketed attractions on your vacation to Dublin, Ireland in 3 days, then it may be wise to invest in a Dublin Pass. The pass includes entry into some of the top places to visit in Dublin – like the Guinness Storehouse, St. Patrick’s Cathedral and Dublin Castle.
As you plan your Dublin in 3 Days Itinerary and decide which sights to see, you will need to determine if the Dublin Pass will provide cost savings for your trip.
How Many Days in Dublin?
Figuring out how many days to spend in Dublin depends on your interests, budget and overall allotted time for your vacation.
When asked the question, How many days in Dublin is enough?, our answer is at least three days – and our Dublin, Ireland Itinerary outlines exactly how we recommend spending that time. It’s ideal for a long weekend in Dublin or for travelers who are visiting the city along with other destinations in Ireland (or the region).
Is 3 Days in Dublin Enough…or Too Much?
Personally, we would not want to spend less than 3 days in the city – but we could stay (and have stayed) longer. How many days to spend in Dublin, Ireland truly boils down to your personal preference.
While 3 days is ideal for us, we realize that not all travelers plan on spending 3 days in Dublin. Some travelers may only stay for 2 days in Dublin, while others might plan to spend a week in the city. Therefore, for visitors taking a day trip to Dublin or those who have ample time, we will share alternate Dublin vacation itineraries as well.
Creating a 3-Day Dublin Itinerary
Planning what to see in Dublin is only one aspect of your vacation. You will also need to consider how to get there, where to stay and what to pack. We share our best advice for these topics at the end of our Dublin trip itinerary to help you plan your best vacation.
As you make your travel plans, organization is key! Use a travel planner – like our Printable Travel Planner – to stay on top of the details!
Save, Pin or Bookmark our Dublin Itinerary post so that you can use it while planning your trip to Ireland!
3 DAYS IN DUBLIN: WHAT TO DO
Now that we have covered what you need to know about trip planning, it’s time to jump into our 3-Day Itinerary for Dublin, Ireland!
DAY 1 of your 3 Day Itinerary Dublin
On the first day of your Dublin 3 Day Itinerary, get oriented on a walking tour, visit a few iconic attractions and spend time in the city’s must-see district.
Explore Dublin on a Walking Tour
Start your exploration on a walking tour – it’s a must do in Dublin! Visitors can opt for one of the themed, guided tours or set off on your own discovery of Dublin with our Self-Guided Dublin Walking Tour.
Our self-guided walk includes the sights that are an absolute must see in Dublin – such as St. Stephen’s Green (the city’s most beautiful park), Grafton Street (one of the city’s main shopping streets), Trinity College (where many famous Dublin writers attended school) and Christ Church Cathedral (the oldest structure in the city).
That said, visitors can get a personal introduction with a local guide. We are highlighting a few of the top guided tours of Dublin.
- Historic Walking Tour: A 2-hour walking tour of the city’s historical sights.
- Literary Pub Crawl: A 2-hour tour revolving around Dublin’s literary heroes…and the pubs they frequented.
- 1916 Easter Rising Tour: A walking tour dedicated to the events of the 1916 Uprising.
- Private Walking Tour: A private tour to top Dublin sights, like the Ha’Penny Bridge and Molly Malone Statue.
- Dublin Food Tour: Learn about the gastronomic history of Ireland on a mid-day foodie tour.
Pro Tip: Not up for walking? No problem, catch a ride on the Hop On Hop Off Bus! The bus travels to all the top Dublin attractions and includes on-board commentary about the sights.
Take in a Top Dublin Attraction
Dublin sights cover a range of interests; truly, there is something for everyone! We are highlighting a few of the must-see Dublin, Ireland attractions. On the afternoon of your first day, choose just one, two…or try to squeeze all of them into your Dublin vacation itinerary!
Book of Kells and Long Room Library
The Book of Kells is, perhaps, the most famous Medieval manuscript in the world – and it’s housed in the Long Room in the Old Library at Trinity College in Dublin. The library itself is a stunning sight, with wood shelves storing more than 200,000 ancient books. Tickets are required – and it’s best to book in advance.
St. Patrick’s Cathedral, Dublin
The largest – and most impressive – cathedral in Ireland, visiting St. Patrick’s Cathedral is one of the things you must do in Dublin! On self-guided tours, visitors learn about the history of the church, which stretches back to the year 1220.
Tour Guinness Brewery
Beer is one of Dublin’s top claims to fame – and visitors can go straight to the source to discover the city’s most popular brand.
Guinness – a dark, smooth and creamy stout beer – is one of the city’s oldest and best-known brews. It has been produced at St. James’s Gate Brewery in Dublin since 1759. Visitors can tour the world-famous brewery and then relax with a pint at the Gravity Bar. Book it in advance – or gain entry with the Dublin Pass!
Sip Whiskey at the Jameson Distillery
Whiskey drinkers, on the other hand, won’t want to miss a guided tour of the Jameson Distillery Bow St. Visitors learn about the complex process of Irish whiskey production and then get to taste the product at JJ’s Bar. Tickets are required for the tour – and are included with the Dublin Pass.
Pro Tip: While Jameson’s is the long-standing traditional whiskey made in Dublin, The Teeling Whiskey Distillery is one of the newest. Visitors tour the operational distillery and taste a sample, too. Find details here!
Tip a Few Pints in Temple Bar District
End the first of your three days in Dublin, Ireland in the famous Temple Bar District. The historic area is the city’s cultural hub and nightlife hotspot. Absolutely packed with boisterous bars, music echo’s off the cobblestone streets and beer flows from the taps.
The most famous bar in the district is The Temple Bar Pub, but we also like Quays Bar (for the intimate setting) and Porterhouse (for the craft beer). That said, it’s best to just stroll around and drift in to whatever place catches your eye or ear!
DAY 2 of your Dublin 3-Day Itinerary
On Day 2 of your Dublin 3 Day Itinerary, pop into a museum in the morning and then spend the afternoon outdoors. At the end of the day, raise a glass with the locals and visitors alike.
Visit One of the Best Dublin Museums
The museums in Dublin are absolutely fabulous (and perfect for rainy days in Dublin, too). Covering a range of topics – from fine art to rock-and-roll to Irish influence around the world – visitors are spoiled for choice when it comes to Dublin museums.
The Little Museum of Dublin
Small but mighty, the Little Museum of Dublin is packed full of memorabilia and artifacts from Dublin’s past. Visitors can learn about the history of the city on a guided tour and then explore the displays on their own. For music fans, the U2 room is not to be missed! Buy tickets here.
The National Gallery of Ireland
One of the best free museums in Dublin, the National Gallery of Ireland features an incredible collection of European art – including paintings by masters and entire wings dedicated to Irish artists.
The National Gallery is just one of many free museums – find more cost-free options in our article, Best FREE Things To Do in Dublin.
EPIC Irish Emigration Museum
A state-of-the-art museum tracing Ireland’s emigration history and the impact it has had on the world, EPIC is one of the most intriguing places to visit in Dublin. In addition to the stories of the Irish people who have left the island and settled elsewhere, visitors can also research their own ancestry at the on-site Irish Family History Center. Get your admission ticket here!
Irish Whiskey Museum
Although there is no shortage of places to taste whiskey in Dublin, there is only one place that delves into the history of the subject: The Irish Whiskey Museum. Visitors are regaled by stories of the rise and fall – and rise – of Irish whiskey. At the end of the tour, participants can sample and blend their own. Reserve your space in advance!
Irish Rock ‘n’ Roll Museum Experience
Located in the Temple Bar District – a hot spot for musicians in the 1980s – the Irish Rock ‘n’ Roll Museum offers music lovers a guided and interactive experience. In addition to the displayed memorabilia from top Irish artists – like U2 and Thin Lizzy – visitors get to step inside a real recording studio and even form their own band. Get Your Ticket!
More Museums for Your Dublin Trip
The above listed museums are our top picks for what to see in Dublin in 3 days – but they are far from the only museums in the city. Fellow travelers may, instead, want to include one or more of the following museums on their itinerary.
- Chester Beatty Library Museum: A Collection of ancient religious texts and manuscripts from around the world. Entry is free.
- Jeanie Johnston Tall Ship: A replica ship detailing the transatlantic journey that passengers escaping the Great Irish Famine would have had to endure. Ticket required.
- GPO Witness History Exhibition: Located inside the General Post Office, the interactive museum details the events of the 1916 Easter Rising. Ticket Required.
Spend Time in Dublin’s Green Spaces
Ireland is known for its lush landscapes – and even in the bustling city of Dublin there are green gardens and parks. On the afternoon of the second day of your Three Days in Dublin Itinerary, get outside and relish those green spaces!
Dublin City Parks
St. Stephen’s Green, Merrion Square Park and Iveagh Gardens are a few of the best Dublin parks for picnics, playing games and people watching.
Far and away our favorite park in Dublin, Phoenix Park is a massive green space on the west side of the city. The sprawling park is home to the Dublin Zoo, the President of Ireland’s house, many monuments and the famed herd of Fallow Deer.
National Botanic Gardens
North of the city, the National Botanic Gardens are a lovely place to spend an afternoon. With beautiful gardens and multiple green houses, it is easy to spend a few hours at the garden.
Furthermore, a trip to the garden can be combined with the Glasnevin Cemetery, which is right next door (and more beautiful than it is creepy!).
Pro Tip: Before heading back into town, consider grabbing a pint of Guinness at John Kavanagh Gravediggers Pub.
Enjoy Authentic Irish Pubs
There is no doubt that Temple Bar is a must-see district, but if you are going to visit Dublin in 3 days, then we highly recommend exploring some of the other bars in the city.
The Brazen Head is one of our favorite pubs in Dublin – and it also claims to be the oldest pub in Ireland. With traditional vibes and live music, it’s truly hard to find a better place to have a pint.
For bar hopping, we love Wexford/Camden Street Lower where there are a mix of bars – from classic pubs (Devitt’s) to craft beer hubs (Against the Grain). The Merrion Row/Baggot Street Lower area, near St. Stephen’s Green, is another fun place for a pub crawl (don’t miss O’Donoghues Bar where there’s often live music and an even livelier crowd).
Pro Tip: Use our Guide to the Best Pubs in Dublin, Ireland for more fun Irish drinking establishments!
DAY 3 of your Dublin Itinerary 3 Days
On the last day of your 3 Day Dublin Itinerary explore beyond Dublin on a day trip – but plan to be back in time for a night of Irish music and food!
Take a Day Trip from Dublin
Your Dublin visit shouldn’t be limited to exploring the city center – there is so much more to see in the immediate area! Travelers can easily plan quick DIY jaunts or join guided tours further afield. We are sharing a few of our favorite Dublin day trips that you can do on your own or with a guide.
The coastal village of Howth is one of the best places to visit near Dublin – as it’s just a short 30-minute train ride. Known for fresh seafood and an epic coastal walk, visitors can easily spend an entire day enjoying Howth. Just be sure to use our tips to Plan a Howth Day Trip from Dublin.
Located just north of Howth, Malahide is a fabulous Dublin day trip destination. The idyllic village features a pedestrian-only thoroughfare that is lined with quaint restaurants and pubs. However, the top sight to see is the Malahide Castle. Read about all the Best Things To Do in Malahide!
Bray, situated on the coast in Co Wicklow to the south of Dublin, was developed in the mid-1800s as a summer city escape. With a long beachfront promenade and a fantastic scenic coastal walk, Bray is a fun place to go for seaside rest and relaxation. Read all our recommended Things To Do in Bray!
Giant’s Causeway and Belfast, Northern Ireland
Although it’s a long day, a trip to Giant’s Causeway is worth it! It’s even better when it is combined with a stop in Belfast. Unless you have a car, it’s best to join a tour (but be sure to check out our helpful Guide of Things To Do in Belfast!).
Join a guided full-day tour into the Wicklow Mountains south of Dublin. Organized day trips include multiple stops, including Kilkenny Castle, Wicklow Mountain National Park, Glendalough and more! Get the details here!
Cliffs of Moher
Visiting the incredible Cliffs of Moher and the quaint town of Doolin – on the west coast of Ireland – is another long day trip from Dublin, but we highly recommend it if your trip to Ireland is limited to just staying in Dublin. Find out more!
Kiss the Blarney Stone…and More
It’s possible to see three of Ireland’s most recognizable sights in just one day: Blarney Castle, Blarney Stone and Rock of Cashel. The full-day excursion is best done on a guided tour…and it will certainly be one to remember! Book your seat!
Traditional Irish Music and Dance Show
Wrap up your Dublin, Ireland trip with a night of live music, dancing and singing. At a traditional Irish show, attendees watch professional dancers take the stage – and are invited to join in on the fun!
The entertaining show is family-friendly and can be upgraded to include a 3-course dinner. Book the experience here!
More Dublin Itineraries
We have outlined what to see in Dublin, Ireland in 3 days, but we know fellow travelers may still be on the fence concerning how many days to devote to the city. If you are unsure how many days to visit Dublin, our sample itineraries might help you decide.
One Day in Dublin
Visitors limited to just 1 day in Dublin will only have time to get an overview of the city – but, if that is all the time you have, then it is best to make the most of it!
Our advice when visiting Dublin in a day is to have a clear plan, buy tickets or arrange tours in advance and have a good back up plan in case something goes awry.
Dublin Itinerary 1 Day
The best way to plan how to see Dublin in one day is to use our 3-day plan as a guide. We recommend starting your day with a guided walking tour in order to quickly get your bearings. Then, choose one or two attractions and one museum to visit (or a park if it’s a sunny day). End your 1 Day Dublin Itinerary in the Temple Bar District.
Dublin in 2 Days
Creating a 2 Days Dublin Itinerary allows for a lot more sightseeing. Visitors with two days in Dublin have plenty of time to see top attractions and get a good feel for the city.
Dublin Itinerary 2 Days
The best way to create a 2 Days in Dublin Itinerary is to simply follow the first two days of our 3 Days Dublin Itinerary (cutting out any day trip opportunity).
Alternate 3 Day Itinerary Dublin
We outlined what we think is the perfect way to see Dublin in 3 days – which includes a day exploring the area around Dublin, Ireland. Travelers who would rather stay in the city center, however, have plenty of options for how to spend their last day.
3 Days in Dublin Itinerary – Without Day Trip
Travelers who want to spend all three days in Dublin City Centre can create a robust sightseeing itinerary. Throughout our 3-Day Dublin Trip Plan, we offer a multitude of suggestions regarding museums and parks to see on Day 2.
To create a Dublin City Only Trip, simply follow our tips for what to see on Days 1 and 2. Then, on Day 3, plan to see a different museum in the morning and a different park in the afternoon.
For example, if you go to the Little Museum of Dublin, the National Gallery and the Phoenix Park on Day 2, then visit the EPIC Museum, the Botanical Gardens and Glasnevin Cemetery on Day 3.
4 Days in Dublin
Visitors with four days in Dublin will not be disappointed – there is so much to see. Planning a 4 Day Dublin Itinerary is fairly straight forward – as we’ve already shared heaps of ideas!
Dublin Itinerary 4 Days
To plan 4 perfect days in Dublin, follow our 3-Day Dublin Travel Plan. On the last day of your trip, visit another museum in the morning and go to a different park in the afternoon.
5 Days in Dublin
Visitors creating a Dublin 5-Day Itinerary have ample time to see the best attractions – and nearby destinations, too!
Dublin Itinerary 5 Days
To create the best 5-Day Dublin Itinerary, we recommend using the above Dublin 4-Day Itinerary for the first four days. Then, on the last day, take another day trip outside of Dublin City Center. For example, if you took an long organized tour to Giant’s Causeway, Galway or Belfast on Day 3, then take a short trip to Howth, Bray or Malahide on Day 5.
Multi-City Trip Plans
We have shared our top tips on what to see and do in Dublin and the surrounding region. However, we know that many travelers plan to visit Dublin as part of a longer European vacation.
3 Days in Ireland Itinerary
Travelers who want to see the best of the entire country – not just Dublin – can pack as much sightseeing into three days in Ireland as possible. The best way to see the highlights on such a short amount of time is on an organized tour.
One of the most popular 3-day tours from Dublin is an Ireland Highlights Tour that includes visiting Cork, Blarney Castle, Ring of Kerry, Cliff of Moher. Find out more here.
7 Day Itinerary for Ireland
Travelers with a week in Ireland can see a lot of the country – even without a car! Use our guide to Ireland in a Week for tips on what to see and do.
Dublin and Belfast Itinerary
Visitors can easily plan a Dublin, Ireland and Belfast, Northern Ireland trip plan on their own. The two cities are very well-connected. For a weeklong trip, use our tips in our Dublin Itinerary for three days and then use our guide of Things To Do in Belfast to plan your time in Northern Ireland.
Dublin and Edinburgh Itinerary
Pairing a trip to Dublin with Edinburgh, Scotland is a fabulous way to see two incredible cities. A short and cheap flight connects the two destinations frequently. To plan your time in Scotland, use our Guide of What To Do in Edinburgh – and take a look at our tips for Things To Eat in Edinburgh, Visiting Glasgow and a Day Trip To Dunbar, as well!
Dublin, London, Paris Itinerary
Visiting big cities – like Dublin, Paris and London – makes for a great European adventure! These destinations are all well-connected by flights – and each city serves as a major hub for international flights, as well (making it easy to get to and from your home country).
To create an ideal Paris, London and Dublin Itinerary, you likely need at least 10 days. We share our top tips for planning the Perfect Paris Itinerary and How To Plan a London Trip that will help you in your trip planning process.
Travel Tips for Visiting Dublin
Now that you are ready to visit Dublin, we have just a few more tips on how to get there, how to get around, where to stay and what to pack.
Flights To Dublin, Ireland
Dublin can be reached by plane, train, bus, boat or car. For international visitors, the best way to arrive is by plane (although ferry service is available from the UK).
Flights to Dublin are available from all major European cities year-round – in addition to the many US gateways (like New York, Boston, Chicago, Philadelphia and DC) that offer direct flights to Dublin seasonally.
Use our guide to Finding Cheap Airfare for top tips on getting the best flights at the best price.
The Dublin Airport is just 10km (6 miles) north of the city center. The best way to get from the airport to the center (and vice versa, from Dublin to Dublin Airport) is by rental car, Uber, FreeNow taxi, pre-arranged private transfer, or airport bus.
How To Travel Around Dublin
We think the best way to get around Dublin is by walking. That said, Dublin has a good public transit system – including buses, trams and trains – that make travel in Dublin quite simple.
Dublin buses, Luas trams and DART trains all use the same payment system – a Leap Card. Visitors can purchase a Leap Card and load it with money to pay for rides on all forms of Dublin transport.
That said, there are special Visitor Leap Cards that are incredibly beneficial to tourists. The 3 Day Dublin Leap Card can be purchased for a flat rate and used for unlimited public transport for 72 hours. Travelers arriving by air can buy the pass at the Dublin Airport or in advance of their trip (and have it mailed to their home address).
Top Tip: There is also a 1-Day and 7-Day Leap Card for visitors on shorter or longer trips to Dublin.
Hotels in Dublin, Ireland
Visitors planning a 3 night stay in Dublin have a wide range of accommodations to choose from. For a quick trip – just 3 nights in Dublin – we recommend staying in a Dublin hotel, rather than a holiday apartment. On such short trips, we find check in (and check out) to be more convenient at a hotel – and fees for such a short stay at an apartment can be cost prohibitive.
When it comes to what area to stay in Dublin on a 3 day trip, we recommend staying as close to the city center as possible. That said, the best Dublin city center hotels fill up quickly in the summertime and tend to be outrageously expensive. If you book outside the city center, look for accommodations that are close to public transit lines.
Two Dublin hotels that get great reviews – and have rooms at decent prices – are Jurys Inn Dublin Christchurch and Temple Bar Inn. Budget travelers looking for a cheap place to stay can find a bed at a dorm hostel, like Garden Lane Backpackers.
Regardless of your trip budget, no one wants to overpay for accommodations. Be sure to read our tips for Finding the Best Hotels for Cheap.
What To Pack for Ireland
Now that you are well into planning your 3 Day Itinerary Dublin, Ireland, it’s time to start thinking about what to pack in your backpack or suitcase. We have a few Dublin-specific tips, but you can find all of our advice on our Packing Tips blog page. Need a packing checklist? Get one for free here!
The Right Travel Shoes
Our 3 Days in Dublin Itinerary covers some ground! You will want to make sure you pack a pair of comfortable walking shoes for your trip. Lightweight, supportive and versatile shoes are the way to go when traveling – which is why I wear these sneakers. Find more tips in our blog post, Best Shoes for Traveling.
Irish Weather Gear
The weather in Dublin can flip on a dime – so it’s best to be prepared! Pack clothes that can be layered and be sure to pack a raincoat and travel umbrella. In the summertime, you may also need sunscreen or a travel hat that will shade your face.
The landscapes in Ireland are gorgeous – and so is the architecture around the Dublin city center. In order to capture the beauty of Ireland, we recommend upgrading to a real camera. We use a Canon DSLR with an 18-135mm lens that works great for both landscape shots and cityscapes. It’s a fabulous budget camera for beginners – and comes with heaps of accessories.
Small Day Pack
Long days of sightseeing require that you carry everything you need with you for the entire day. Small backpacks – like the Osprey packs we carry – are great travel day packs for city adventures. The packs are big enough to carry our camera, raincoats and map, plus they have zippered pockets that keep our wallets and phones out of the reach of pickpockets.
Travel Insurance for Your Ireland Trip
Travel insurance can cover a wide range of unfortunate situations – including everything from annoying lost luggage to delayed flights to falling ill abroad. Check for affordable rates at a trusted company, like World Nomads.
We Want To Know: What would you add to our 3 Days in Dublin Itinerary? Tell us in the comments!
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