Dublin is a city bursting with culture – you just need to look around and you’ll be stunned at the wide variety of things to do and learn about the capital.
The city experts at the Dublin Pass have looked outside the guidebook and downtrodden tourist path, veering away from your typical museums and attractions in favour of quirky and little museums of Dublin. Let’s look at some of the best in their category; from little Irish leprechauns to celebrating the history of the capital through the ages – here are our top peculiar museums in Dublin.
The Little Museum of Dublin
15 St Stephens Green, Dublin 2
Image by William Murphy
The Little Museum of Dublin is otherwise known as the ‘people’s museum of Dublin’ and is a treasure trove of collected items from those who’ve lived in Dublin over the years. It’s a true museum curated by the people, for the people and its exhibits and collections are an eclectic mix of donations from knick knacks, photographs, advertising, letters and collectables – a real smorgasbord of social and cultural history of Dublin from the 1900s-2000s. You can even join in on a guided tour to learn about the most important items in the museum and their significance in the history of Dublin.
Image by TIA
St. Michael’s Hill, Christchurch, Dublin 8
If you want to learn about Dublin through the ages, wind back the clock past the Middle Ages, all the way back to the Vikings – the first settlers in Dublin. Learn about these hardy warriors as they fought for their territory in 841 when they named the city Dyflin, meaning Black Pool. This fascinating Viking Exhibition looks at the day to day life of the Irish Vikings, from their clothes, to their tools, learning about them through legacies past down. Fast forward a few years and discover Dublin in the Middle Ages over 700 years ago when the city was a dirty bustling trader town during the Strongbow and the Reformation movements.
Image by Aoife
St. James’s Gate, Dublin 8
Image by Doug Kerr
It might not be little, but it’s certainly quirky! Visit the Guinness Storehouse for a true experience of Irish culture. You’re welcomed into a huge atrium designed to be the largest pint glass in the world and over seven storeys you are taught about the history of Guinness from how it’s made and manufactured, to its advertising and social history, and ending on a high at the Gravity Bar, where you can learn to pour the perfect pint. This museum is a great place to learn about the ins and outs of one of the most popular drinks in the country, and all in the name of culture…!
Image by Wojtek Gurak
Number Twenty Nine
Fitzwilliam Street Lower, Dublin 2
Dublin is famous for being a city with stunning historic Georgian architecture with evidence everywhere you look. One of the best examples of this is Number Twenty Nine, Dublin’s official Georgian House Museum which has been restored to its former glory to bring to life the years between 1790 and 1820. Its unmistakable décor and artefacts are so reminiscent of the Georgian era you really will feel like you’ve travelled back through time. Join in on a guided tour to learn more about the population boom in Dublin during these formative years, as well as the physical reminders that were left behind even after the period was over.
Dublin Writers Museum
18 Parnell Square North, Dublin 1
It’s no surprise that Dublin is a city with such strong literary history and heritage. You only need to name some of the most influential writers of our time such as Oscar Wilde, James Joyce, W.B. Yeats and Samuel Beckett to understand the huge legacy they have left to the city. Step inside this beautiful Georgian museum to uncover the stories behind some of the countries Nobel Prize winners and heroes. See personal letters, artefacts, historic and priceless objects and learn about the history of Dublin and Ireland between 1700s-end of the 19th century and the profound impact it had on writers during that time. Visit the Gorham Library containing rare copies and first editions of some of the most important works and pop your head around the corner into the Gallery of Writers to see sculptures, paintings and busts of these famous literary legends.
Image by William Murphy
The Leprechaun Museum
Jervis Street, Dublin 1, Ireland
You might think this museum is a bit of a gimmick, and maybe it is, but it certainly falls under one of the more quirky museums in Dublin. Learn about the tall tale of this Irish legend who’s been around in literature and common culture for thousands of years. This museum explores the characters in Irish mythology and opens up a world of fun, magic and folklore. Join in on a guided tour which will bring these stories to life, from how the character came about, to his modern day representation and significance. It’s a fun museum to learn a little more about Ireland’s folklore and mythology – no matter your beliefs!
Image by Leprechaun Museum
From tall tales, to literary legends, Viking history and Georgian heritage, Dublin’s quirky and little museums give a fascinating insight into the multifaceted culture of this capital. You certainly won’t be bored if you dare to venture off the beaten tourist track!
Article brought to you by Dublin Pass