Top 11 Things to Do At Christmas In Dublin, Ireland

things to do at christmas in dublin

World-famous as the capital of the Republic of Ireland, Dublin is a splendid city located at the mouth of charming River Liffey on the country’s east coast. It’s home to several historic structures, such as Dublin Castle, National Museum of Ireland, and St. Patrick’s Cathedral, and amazing attractions such as Dublin Zoo housed in sprawling Phoenix Park, lush St. Stephen’s Green, and many more. It also features plenty of amazing budget hotels and hostels, as well as hotels with free parking. More so, Dublin leads in celebrating the festive spirit of Christmas and hosts numerous Christmas special events, decorations, and activities for families and kids. From winter lights, zoo lights, caroling, movies, ice skating, to fun-filled winter-themed parks, Dublin offers you all the excitement to make your Christmas holiday special. So, with Christmas around the corner, if you are planning to visit Dublin for enjoying the holiday spirit, fun, and celebrations, think no further. Check out some of the best things to do at Christmas in Dublin, Ireland, to make your holidays memorable.

1. Head to the Christmas Experience at Airfield Estate

Editor's Note: Photo taken from the establishment's official social account

Embrace the festive spirit at Christmas Experience at Airfield Estate this December when holidaying in Dublin. Know the true values of Christmas i.e. happiness, family, goodwill, and charity on this occasion which encourages environmentally-friendly recognition. Kids will enjoy writing a postcard to Santa, enjoying tales with Elves, and exploring the beautiful Airfield House. Make lovely memories with your family and kids here.

Christmas Experience at Airfield Estate

Address: Overend Way, Dundrum, Dublin 14, Ireland, D14 EE77

Website: Christmas Experience at Airfield Estate

Opening hours: 9:30am - 4:30pm (daily)

Price: 6 - 25 USD

2. Watch your kids have fun at Winter Funderland Theme park in Dublin

Open until 9pm today, our final weekend here in the RDS Dublin don’t miss out

Posted by Winter Funderland on Friday, 12 January 2018

Are you looking for fun and adventure this Christmas? Plan to visit Funderland Funfair which is organized at RDS, Dublin, every year. Visit this adventurous theme park with your family and kids. Some of the best thrilling rides such as a roller coaster, a haunted house, and exciting Dodgems await you to add excitement to your festive holidays. Put on warm clothes and head out to explore this fun-filled attraction during your Christmas vacation in Dublin.

Winter Funderland Theme Park

Address: Simmonscourt Rd, Dublin 4, Ireland

Website: Winter Funderland Theme park

Opening hours: 26th December - 12th January: 10am - 10pm

3. Immerse yourself in the festive wonderland that is the Guinness Storehouse

Guinness Storehouse exterior 3
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user Steven Lek used under CC BY-SA 4.0

The Guinness Storehouse is one of the most popular breweries in Ireland, and every holiday season, it becomes a festive wonderland that attracts visitors of all kinds. The Christmas celebration at the Guinness Storehouse lasts for about five weeks, and it usually includes a bright and show-stopping Christmas tree, musical entertainment, festive menus, and many more.

If you visit this market during Christmas, you shouldn’t miss their Plum Pudding Porter or the limited edition holiday-themed pints of their beers. You can find even more food and souvenirs to buy in the many restaurants and stores in this market.

The Guinness Storehouse

Address: St. James’s Gate, Dublin 8, D08 VF8H, Ireland

Website: The Guinness Storehouse

Opening hours: Mon - Fri: 10am - 7:45pm; Sat: 9:30am - 8:45pm; Sun: 9:30am - 7:45pm

4. Attend Carols By Candlelight at the National Concert Hall

Posted by Raymond Gubbay on Tuesday, 25 September 2018

Wondering what to do in Dublin at Christmas? Celebrate this Christmas by attending the praiseworthy musical event called Carols by Candlelight in Dublin. The sublime concert, which will be featured at the National Concert Hall, comprises carols and amazing seasonal classics which are sure to delight you. Admire the performances of the Mozart Festival Orchestra which will be staged in 18th-century costumes. Be amazed to watch the performances in the splendid candle-lit setting. So, make it a point to attend this melodious magical night to enhance your festive experience in Dublin.

Carols By Candlelight at the National Concert Hall

Address: Earlsfort Terrace, Saint Kevin’s, Dublin, D02 N527, Ireland

Website: Carols By Candlelight at the National Concert Hall

5. Take your kids to The Snowman Special at Bord Gáis Energy Theatre

Plan to watch The Snowman Special at Bord Gáis Energy Theater, with your entire family, when holidaying in Dublin this Christmas. Your kids will love to watch the film which features the story of James and the flying snowman, on the big screen. To add to the festive excitement and spirit, it also features seasonal favorites. Spend a fantastic time, immerse yourself in the holiday spirit, and ensure that you book your tickets early.

The Snowman Special at Bord Gáis Energy Theatre

Address: Grand Canal Square, Docklands, Dublin, Ireland

Website: Bord Gáis Energy Theatre

Opening hours: 6th December: 3.20pm & 5.30pm; 7th December: 11.30am, 1.30pm, 3.30pm & 5.30pm; 8th December: 1.30am, 1.30pm, 3.30pm & 5.30pm

Price: 17 - 99 USD

6. Have fun ice skating at Dundrum On Ice

Experience the magic of Christmas when vacationing in Ireland, by gliding on the ice at Dundrum On Ice, the best ice-skating rink in Dublin. Have fun exploring the ice rink with your family and kids. Whether you are an amateur or an experienced ice skater, you can enjoy skating on the frozen surface. The presence of handrails around the sides ensures your safety if you are trying ice skating for the first time. The availability of lovely penguin skating aids for children encourages and supports them to enjoy ice skating. The sound system also enhances your skating experience.

Dundrum On Ice

Address: Building 5 Dundrum South Dundrum Town Centre, Sandyford Rd, Dundrum, Dublin 16, Ireland

Website: Dundrum On Ice

Opening hours: 25th October - 12th January: Mon - Fri: 3pm - 9pm; Sat - Sun: 10am - 7pm (closed on 25th December)

Price: 19 - 63 USD

7. Watch a Christmas special performance at Light House Cinema

Another fantastic Christmas activity in Dublin is watching a special performance at Light House Cinema. This is especially true if you’d like to catch a Christmas-special ballet. Bolshoi Ballet: The Nutcracker, features an interesting and recreational story where an enigmatic Drosselmeyer, gifts his goddaughter, called Marie, a Nutcracker doll on Christmas Eve. The doll comes to life at midnight and combats the Mouse King with the determination to save Marie from him.

Light House Cinema

Address: Market Square, Smithfield, Dublin 7, D07 R6YE, Ireland

Website: Light House Cinema

Opening hours: 15th December: 3pm

Price: 12 - 22 USD

8. Marvel at illuminated story characters at Wild Lights at Dublin Zoo

Dublin offers plenty of kid-friendly things to do, and one of them involves taking your young ones to Wild Lights at Dublin Zoo this Christmas. By featuring a new theme called Stories, Myths and Legends, Wild Lights offers a spectacular illuminated experience that is sure to enchant your kids. Watch magical scenes from popular tales, such as Peter Pan, world-famous Jungle Book, and the popular Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland: brought to life by sparkling, hued silk lanterns. Feast on warm and savory treats with your kids.

Wild Lights at Dublin Zoo

Address: Phoenix Park, Dublin 8, Ireland

Website: Wild Lights at Dublin Zoo

Opening hours: November: Thu - Sun: 5pm - 9pm; December: Mon - Sun: 5pm - 9pm; **1st January - 5th January: 5pm - 9pm (daily) (closed on 25th & 26th December)

Price: 14 - 23 USD (free for kids age 3 and under)

9. Attend Carols by Candlelight at Christchurch Cathedral

The sweet sounds of carolers are all over Dublin… We Irish are a musical people, and never need much of an invitation...

Posted by Visit Dublin on Monday, 9 December 2013

Thinking of what to do in Dublin in December? Do not miss the popular Christmas concert called ‘Carols by Candlelight’ during your excursion in Dublin, this Christmas. Organized in the magnificent candle-lit setting of Christchurch Cathedral, it features a great variety of classic carols, old and modern favorites, and a well-known choir. Immerse yourself in the musical festive spirit of the season by attending this event.

Carols by Candlelight at Christchurch Cathedral

Address: Christchurch Place, Wood Quay, Dublin 8, Ireland

Website: Carols by Candlelight at Christchurch Cathedral

Opening hours: 10 December - 12 December: 5:30 pm

Price: 28 - 39 USD

10. View spectacular Winter Lights in Dublin City

Jeanie Johnston
Source: Photo by Flickr user Cityswift used under CC BY 2.0

If you’re looking for more fun things to do at night, here is your chance to watch Dublin like never before. Take a tour through the city while gazing at Winter Lights during your Christmas holidays. Admire 13 iconic landmarks that are animated and illuminated from the sunset to 2 am every night for 31 nights in this festive season. City Hall, Hugh Lane Gallery, Liberty Hall, The Mansion House, Trinity College, and GPO are some of the sites which are usually illuminated during the Winter Lights.

Winter Lights Dublin City

Address: Dublin, Ireland

Website: Winter Lights Dublin City

Opening hours: Sunset - 2am (daily)

11. Visit the Live Crib in Phoenix Park

We are all set up in the Phoenix Park for our live crib. We will be here every weekend till Christmas

Posted by Agri Aware on Saturday, 2 December 2017

Visit live Christmas Crib in the festive season, at Phoenix Park Visitor Center. The event features carol singing at the Christmas crib. View the crib on display during the visiting hours. The local farmers who have supplied the animals will answer your queries. Have a great time watching the live Christmas Crib.

Live Crib in the Phoenix Park

Address: Phoenix Park Visitor Centre, Phoenix Park, Dublin, Ireland

Website: Live Crib in the Phoenix Park

Opening hours: December: Sat - Sun: 9:30am - 5pm

Price: Free

A splendid Christmas holiday in Dublin

Airtricity Christmas Festival 2013
Source: Photo by Flickr user Miguel Mendez used under CC BY 2.0

Dublin is indeed an enchanting city full of life and exciting activities, including food tours and Christmas markets. Spending your Christmas vacation here with your family is sure to gift you a wonderful holiday experience. So, make no delay, plan your winter vacation and have fun enjoying all these things to do in Dublin for Christmas.

Frequently asked questions about the best things to do at Christmas in Dublin, Ireland

1. Which places are the best to go to during Christmas in Dublin, Ireland?

Christmas in Dublin is out of this world. The city lights up for the occasion, and many exciting activities are available to you. If you’re planning to visit Dublin during Christmas time, you should include these places in your itinerary: the National Concert Hall, Dundrum On Ice, Light House Cinema, Winter Funderland Theme Park, and Wild Lights at Dublin Zoo.

2. What are the Christmas markets to visit in Dublin, Ireland?

Dublin always goes big for Christmas, which is why many markets haven’t been confirmed yet — everyone is still busy preparing. That said, there is one establishment that will surely host a Christmas event: the Guinness Storehouse. Every year, this business becomes a festive wonderland, offering holiday-themed food, drink, and many more. So, be sure to check it out!

Disclosure: Trip101 selects the listings in our articles independently. Some of the listings in this article contain affiliate links.

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Manjiri Kochrekar is a travel blogger from India. She loves exploring and learning various destinations, their history, culture, and peculiarities. Writing is her passion, which means she enjoys...Read more

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