With a history and culture steeped in folklore and good-humored fun, it’s no wonder Dublin boasts a host of charming secret spots and hangouts known only to locals.
And as we continue to work from home for the foreseeable future, we have extra time that we would have used to travel and get ready in the morning.
We can use those extra hours to explore the hidden gems that are right on our doorstep.
There is a lot to explore in the charismatic capital during your free time, so take a look at some of our favorite places in Dublin.
Killiney Hill and its surroundings is arguably one of the best walks in Dublin. The easy uphill hike offers exceptional views from the top. With panoramic views of the Dublin coastline to the left and an exceptional view of the Wicklow Mountains to the right.
You can spend hours sitting there, admiring the view and watching the world go by.
Spooky Hellfire Club Ruins
The Hellfire Club is one of the most unusual places to visit in Dublin. The ruins of the old house are at the foot of the Montpellier hill.
Like many old buildings, the club is subject to some old Irish myths and legends. Some even believed that the house was set on fire by the devil leaving it in the state of ruins that we see today.
As well as being one of the strangest places in Dublin, the Hellfire Club is the ideal place for a picnic while watching the sunset. It is also home to phenomenal views of Dublin city and beyond.
The original Poolbeg lighthouse was supposedly the world’s first candle-powered lighthouse when it was built in 1768. It was converted to oil in 1786.
It dates back to the 18th century and is a cool eye-catcher with its bright red hue. The Poolbeg Lighthouse is located on the Great South Wall of Dublin Port, stretching almost four miles into Dublin Bay.
Shelley Banks Beach
The beach is quite hidden even from local Dubliners, making it wonderful for a quiet getaway close to the city.
It is a very nice place to spend a couple of hours on the beach. You can also combine this trip with a visit to the Poolbeg lighthouse, which is actually very close.
The Hungry Tree, King’s Inn Park
There are many secret attractions in Dublin, some are man-made and some were created by nature itself. This gem is quite unusual. It is located in the Kings Inn park on the north side of town. There is a tree in the park, but it is not just any tree.
The tree is starting to grow on a park bench, and it is finally devouring the existence of the benches. This secret Dublin spot is becoming increasingly popular and the hungry tree is becoming a famous addition to many Instagram feeds.
The Iveagh Gardens are in the heart of Dublin. The park is just a short walk from the popular and busy St. Stephen’s Green Park.
The Iveagh Gardens are a great place to go if you want to have a bit of relaxation time in the city. The park is small but rarely crowded, making it the perfect hidden gem to escape the hustle and bustle of the great smoke.
War Memorial Gardens in Phoenix Park
These impressive gardens are located next to the Phoenix Park in Dublin. They are a tribute to the 49,400 Irish soldiers who lost their lives in “the Great War, 1914-1918”.
It is a beautiful garden that has two identical flower bed sections that are located next to each other.
The memorial garden is not very well known and is a great place to visit and pay tribute to lives lost.
If you find yourself walking around Dublin, you might take a look at Anne’s Lane, just off South Anne Street in the city center.
The colorful umbrellas make the narrow lane look bright and colorful in good weather, and it’s perfect for a cheeky Instagram story.
Crampton Court in Temple Bar has been renamed Love Lane and is now one of the best and brightest streets in Dublin.
This ‘Love the Lanes’ initiative was adopted by Dublin City Council and local artists were given permission to convert the cultural district into an open-air gallery. This particular lane links Essex Street to the rear of the iconic Olympia Theater on Dame Street.
The wall is dotted with tiles with movie quotes, local sayings, and famous love words written by the world’s great playwrights and authors.
Skiing in Kilternan
It is possible to practice your alpine skills right here in Dublin. Ireland’s Ski Club is home to the only dry slopes in Ireland.
The Kilternan slopes will cost you € 30 for a 3 hour practice session, however that also includes all rentals.
As a bonus, the top of the highest slope offers a breathtaking view of the Irish coastline. It will be time to get the snowboard back out once outdoor sport is allowed.
Blessington Street Basin
Just a few minutes’ walk from O’Connell Street, this spectacular oasis of calm is one of the most unusual parks in the city.
It is a former reservoir that supplied water to houses in the capital in the 19th century and then supplied the Powers and Jameson distilleries until the 1970s.
The site was remodeled into a park in 1994 and is primarily a beautiful lake with many benches to sit on and enjoy the peaceful surroundings.
Since the start of the pandemic, several tables have also been set up in the park so you can pack a picnic and hang out at this incredible hidden gem.
For the latest news and breaking news, visit dublinlive.ie/news.
Get all the great headlines, images, reviews, opinions, and videos on the stories that matter to you.
Follow us on Twitter @DublinLive – the official Dublin Live Twitter account – real news in real time.
We are also on Facebook / dublinlive: your must-have news, features, videos and images all day from the capital.