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Dublin nightlife

Nightlife in Dublin is orchestrated by two entertainment supremos—Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. You may have heard of them: Dr. Jekyll clocks on as the Dublin office crowd clocks off. He presides over early evening cocktails, performances at the Abbey and Gate theaters, the first surges of Guinness in old Dublin pubs like Kehoe's, and zesty smells at hip restaurants like Saba and L'Gueuleton. Meander about during this wonderful witching hour, and you'll sense cosmopolitanism in the Dublin air. Come midnight, however, Mr. Hyde's shift begins. He is responsible for turning conversation into confrontation; scintillating wit into slurring wackiness. He sets punters waddling into the passing traffic, fast food joints, and each other. Can you have one type of Dublin nightlife without the other? Tourists happy to lap up "paddywhackery" during the day are often shocked at how Ireland's relationship with alcohol plays itself out—in glorious Technicolor—at night. There, we've said it. Now go party.

Closing times in Dublin are famously flexible. By law, last orders are Mondays through Thursdays, 11:30 pm; Fridays and Saturdays, 12:30 am; and Sundays, 11 pm. You have about 30 minutes to drink up. On weekends, late bars serve to 1:30 am, and nightclubs to 2:30 am.

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Dice Bar, Dublin

Who knows where the name came from—is it because the Smithfield neighborhood can be a little dicey? At this small, dark bar with blacker-than-black walls,...more

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Doheny & Nesbitt, Dublin

Long-time regulars just call it Nesbitt's, and so should you. Dublin is full of pubs, but there's nothing like the character of this landmark watering hole,...more

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Gaiety Theatre, Dublin

The Gaiety has an illustrious history as a ragtag theater (it opened in 1871), with anything from opera to pantomime to Irish drama making up a given evening's...more

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Kehoe's, Dublin

Kehoe's is one of the dozen or so original 19th-century Irish pubs that remain in Dublin. The interconnecting rooms, chin-wagging snugs, and cozy lounges remain...more

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The Market Bar, Dublin

This former sausage factory adjoining the George's Street Arcade is a huge space, with a sky-lit interior, wooden floors, and lots of greenery. There's a...more

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Pod/Tripod/Crawdaddy, Dublin

In the beginning, there was the POD. Or Place of Dance, as the acronym may be. The old Harcourt Street railway station was first converted to an industrial...more

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The South William, Dublin

Drop in to the South William by day, and you're treated to an eclectic pad serving nine kinds of delicious pies (bacon and cabbage, chicken and leek, venison...more

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Whelan's, Dublin

Whelan's dates from 1772, so when the current owner bought the place in 1999, you could see why he vowed not to develop it into a tacky "superpub." For a time,...more

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Information may have changed since date of publication. Please confirm details with individual establishments before planning your trip.



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