I’m not a literature buff and certainly not up on my Irish writers, but I still found the whole thing gripping and hilarious. You’ll need to block out a evening for this (the tour starts around 7:30pm and goes until 9:30pm), and you might want to eat dinner beforehand if you want to enjoy a pint at each of the four pub stops. The tour happens daily when it's warm (April 1 - October 31) and every Sunday once the winter hits.
Definitely buy tickets in advance.
Whelan’s is an old pub that doubles as the go to indie rock club for Irish artists and touring musicians - the place to catch amazing up and comers as well as big-name bands when they’re in town for festivals but want to throw a smaller, more intimate show. They also host weekly trad performances - I got lucky with two Tuesday nights in Dublin and saw a band named Call the Dancers perform both nights. They were incredible, and did a magnificent job of turning the afterwork crowd into a serious party.
Check out the schedule before your trip to see who’s playing - and if there are any traditional Irish performances, definitely add one to your schedule. Other bars known for their trad performances are listed here.
4. Eat & Drink
I could wax poetic about most of the meals, beers and cocktails I had in Dublin, but I’ll save my breath and just list the ones I’d head back to in a heartbeat on my next trip to Ireland (small plug: if you’re getting married in Ireland, please please bring me along). Oh, and almost all of these are thanks to the incredible recommendations organized by Elizabeth Clayton, and a few extras thrown in by friends, colleagues, and anyone else who caught my ask on facebook. You're all the best.
Brother Hubbard South
3fe (best scone I’ve ever had)
Love Supreme (house made hand pies)
Hatch & Sons
Fish Shop (any location)
Bastible (maybe ranks in the top 25 meals of my life?)
Dunne and Crescenzi (went to the Sandymount location, which is a tiny, calm and fancy part of town that is worth a visit. Fish Shop also has a spot here).
Peruke & Periwig
The Long Hall
Doheny & Nesbitt
5. Get the hell out of Dublin