The 18th-century Dublin Castle is among the city’s most iconic sites. A small park with pretty floral displays lies behind the castle, which replaced a 13th-century Viking military fortress. Learn its fascinating history as the seat of British and Irish governments over the centuries.
Arrive in the spacious Georgian courtyard and snap photos of the historic castle. Gaze up at the Bedford Tower, which dates back to 1761. The façade has a bright green dome atop a clock tower. Note the Romanesque qualities, such as the stately columns and large pediment, of the base of the structure.
Look for the Record Tower, the only preserved part from the medieval castle that predated the current structure. Take a guided tour of the castle for a better understanding of its history. See relics from Vikings and browse the stately Georgian chambers. Enter the majestic Chapel Royal for its extraordinary Gothic revival interior. Today, the castle is used for state receptions and presidential inaugurations.
Stroll through the pleasant Dubh Linn Garden and appreciate its landscape designs. Visit the charming individual gardens that have colorful flowers and plants. The central lawn is circular with patterns of brick paths weaving through it. It doubles as a helicopter landing pad. Note the Celtic symbolism in the snake paths and maze gardens.
Purchase souvenirs and items with a castle theme from the gift shop. Snacks and refreshments are available in the Silk Road Café. Hear tales about the castle’s rich past, including the theft of the Irish Crown Jewels here in 1907.
The castle is open daily year-round except for a few closures for festive holidays. Visit between morning and late afternoon. The castle opens several hours later on Sundays. Select a guided-tour ticket for access to the State Apartments. Children and students get discounts.
Dublin Castle is on the southern side of the River Liffey in the center of Dublin in one of the most historical parts of the city. Take a bus to a stop in front of the castle. Visit the nearby attractions, such as City Hall, the Olympia Theatre and Christ Church Cathedral.