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02nd Jul 2024

23 of the best date ideas in Dublin


For when it’s your turn to impress

In the hustle and bustle of daily life in the city it can be hard to carve out time to see your friends and family, let alone spend time with your partner. We can all be guilty of staying in of an evening with a bottle of wine, putting the feet up and watching Netflix. But there’s a lot to be said for taking the time out, getting out of your comfort zone and doing things you wouldn’t normally do. Whether you are first date in or your first decade in, it’s always nice to pop out with your love and have a day to yourselves.

23. Some indoor climbin’

Gravity Climbing Centre, Inchicore, more info here

If you are planning on starting a new hobby together, doing an intro to rock climbing at Gravity Climbing Centre, in Inchicore’s Goldenbridge Industrial estate is a great shout. Just out in Inchicore, it’s not too far out from the city centre, plus it’s right next to Rascals the perfect spot for some post-climbing pints and pizza. Whether you are an experienced climber or a beginner, the friendly team are always there to help!

22. Dinner on the water

La Peniche, Grand Canal, more info here

Few things spell romance quite like having your dinner on a boat. The floating French restaurant is docked on the Grand Canal and is a truly unique spot to have your dinner. The team at La Peniche really lean into the romance, bedecking their boat with twinkling fairy lights, sparking up the French noir music and wining and dining you into the night.

21. Jameson cocktail-making class

Bow Street, more info here

First founded by John Jameson in 1780, the former factory has become a monument to Irish Whiskey. Enticing tourists from all over the globe, the distillery turned visitor centre has a whole variety of experiences to choose from. It’s an interactive tour where you learn about the origins of the iconic whiskey from grain to glass – and even getting to taste a variety of different Jameson whiskeys (including their very own exclusive whiskey only available at the distillery!) Whether you’re a bit of a history buff or a spirits enthusiast, the Jameson Whiskey tour is definitely one to hit up on date night or otherwise.

20. Howth head walk


A classic for a reason, on a fine day there are few things more romantic than a walk around Howth head followed by a stroll around the seafront of Howth. Grabbing some chips, watching the trailers going in and out and attempting to spot the chonky Howth seals, pure romance.

19. A cycle/walk around the Phoenix Park

Dublin 8

I’ve been living near the Pheno for over three years now, and I still find new things to see, new hidden parts and new routes to take. Since it is the largest enclosed public park in any capital city in Europe, there’s a lot to see, I find the best way to see the place is by bike, you can bring your own bike, grab a Dublin bike or indeed grab a rental bike at the main Park entrance. If you don’t fancy pedalling, walking is also a great way to see (some) of the place, there’s also a new bus route that goes through the park which can be helpful to reduce the miles and the potential for sore feet. If you are in need of refreshments, popping into the bandstand for an ice cream, or the Hole in the Wall for a pint, Dash for a coffee are all solid options.

18. Pottery painting

Dublin Pottery Painting, Smithfield’s Queen Street, more info here

Anyone who grew up going to birthday parties in Leisure Plex will be familiar with the rite of passage that was decorating a bowl, mug, soap holder, you name it, at the institution known as Pompeii Paints. While Q-Zar and bowling were of course a bitta craic too (although did anyone else experience complete annihilation when finding themselves on the Green Team playing Q-Zar, because the system was definitely rigged) getting invited to a Pompeii Paints party was something else – peak Celtic Tiger behaviour. Opened back in February the new studio is open Thursday to Sunday to the public, but also available for private hire seven days a week. There are 11 different ceramic items you can choose to paint, and with the assistance of the staff, you’ll have a gorge new piece for the mantelpiece. All pieces are fired in the kiln and ready for collection within a few weeks.

17. Mountain biking

Ticknock, more info here

If you want to tackle something a little more challenging than a couple of pints or a dinner out, mountain biking around Ticknock is a great shout. You can rent bikes out the back of Trails cafe and take on the Dublin mountains one wheely at a time (more info on the routes here). If you get tired there’s always cakes and coffee in the cafe to revive you.

16. Indoor skiing

Ski Club of Ireland, Kilternan, more info here

A pretty unconventional date idea, but heading for some indoor skiing is genuinely something you wouldn’t do every day. Whether you’ve never skied before or want to improve, the team offer beginner and improver skiing and snowboarding lessons. It’s a great way to get a feel for the slopes and if you’s enjoy the lesson this date could be a good prompt for your next holiday??

15. Crazy Golf

Rainforest Adventure Golf, Dundrum town centre, more info here

A tried and tested date night spot, where armed with some novelty-sized golf clubs over the course of an absurd course you really get to grips with how competitive your partner is. This rainforest-themed indoor golf spot is suitable for all ages (but is a big hit with first-time daters). Even if the date isn’t going well, an afternoon spent in Rainforest Adventure Golf is always time well spent (at least you can get your frustrations out by whacking the golf ball).

14. Rage Room

Ballyfermot, more info here

We’ve all seen that strangely wholesome scene in Season Two of Sex Education where Maeve, Ola, Lily, Olivia, and Viv try to help Aimee get her rage out by smashing a car to bits – we might not quite understand why it feels good to smash stuff to literal smithereens, but it can’t be denied that it’s therapeutic, and now we can experience it for ourselves in Dublin, with Ireland’s first Rage Room. It’s a space to de-stress, and naturally, given the name, to unleash your inner rage, also a space where you can see just how violent your partner really is (cute). A speaker is provided so you can choose exactly what soundtrack you rage to, and the smashable items include anything from glassware and crockery to printers, TVs, monitors, and copiers. You can even bring your own items to smash if this is more cathartic to you – or you just have some ugly kitchenware that you’ve been looking for an excuse to get rid of. A session in the Rage Room lasts 20 minutes and can hold between one and three people inside. Participants will be supplied with the appropriate gear for the experience, and inside the room, there will be 25 small smashable items and three medium smashable items. The session costs €35 per person. You must be at least 18 years old to enter the Rage Room.

13. Vintage Tea Trips

No fixed abode more info here

You might have seen the distinctive yellow and blue bus roaming around the streets of Dublin, with a pile of guffawing happy customers plonked into seats chowing down on tiny sandwiches. Hoping on the vintage Routemaster buses (old London Transport), while having your afternoon tea and listening to some 1950s crooners, is truly an amazing way to spend a few hours in the city (rain, hail or shine). The buses even have names Pauline, Kitty and Jean which are named after the owner’s Grandmothers and great auntie) because they used to welcome everyone into their home for tea and cakes whether you were the postman or the Pope. A truly unique Dublin experience, go with your mam, go with a gaggle of hens, have your wedding on there or drag the work crew along for some team bonding. The bus boards from Stephen’s Green, and the tour runs for 70-80 minutes where you journey all around the city centre (passing all the sights like Christ Church, Trinity College, St. Stephen’s Green, Wood Quay, O’Connell Street, Phoenix Park, and the grand buildings of Georgian Dublin). This is a semi-guided tour, so expect to hear some favourite Dublin stories from your host while also having plenty of time in between for a catch-up and gossip. Catering to all dietary requirements, the afternoon tea is available in either traditional, vegetarian, gluten-free, dairy-free or vegan afternoon tea, with prices from €49.50pp for adults and €27pp for kids.

12. Roller Disco

Fusion Rink, Long Mile Road

Dublin’s only roller disco and dance centre can be found off the Long Mile Road in Walkinstown. Priced at €10 it’s open to all open to all levels and all ages, with lesions available for beginners if you need that extra push. Whether you are a seasoned skater or not, it’s great fun to whizz around the rink and pretend you are in Blades of Glory (without the ice).

11. The Hideout

South William Street, more info here

A Dublin institution that some might be more familiar with spending time in when they were mitching off school. It’s a deceptively big pool hall with table tennis facilities too. It’s pretty reasonable costing €15 or €20 per hour depending on the day, plus it’s BYOB (bring your own bottle).

10. The Viking Splash

From Stephen’s Green, more info here

While the amphibious buses that float along the Grand Canal Basin, may seem like they are more suited to tourists than Dubliners, they are actually super informative and a bit of craic. If you fancy a day date where you can don a viking helmet and roar at people, look no further than the Viking Splash.

9. Dublin Bay Cruises

From Sir John Rogerson’s Quay, more info here

With five trips between Dublin City Centre, Dún Laoghaire and Howth departing each day, Dublin Bay Cruises, located on Sir John Rogerson’s Quay, Grand Canal Dock is a class idea for a day trip. Hear commentary and enjoy a tipple from the on-board bar, while you sail across Dublin Bay, learning about the history of Dublin via landmarks like Dún Laoghaire Harbour, the James Joyce Martello Tower, Dalkey Island, Bull Island Nature Reserve, Baily Lighthouse, Ireland’s Eye Island and loads more. Pack your rainjacket and a bobbin ‘cos it can get windy out there!

8. Stella Cinema

Rathmines, more info here

You’ll be following in the footsteps of generations of lovestruck Dubliners, by taking a trip to the Stella. The iconic cinema first opened its doors in the 1930s, its interiors having been lovingly restored and are in keeping with the glitz and glamour of the 1920s. You can grab some cocktails upstairs, or a steak next door and then toddle in to see new release films and Hollywood classics seven days a week. They even have couches instead of seats up the front if you fancy a bitta spooning and a smooch while you watch your film.

7. Axe Throwing

Axe Club, Gaelic Street, more info here

If you fancy a more endorphin-fueled date night, flinging axes around the place might be a good shout. About a 10-minute walk from Connolly Station, grab an axe (don’t grind it) throw it at the target, then with all that frustration thrown out of you, before heading for dinner and drinks afterwards. It’s an affordable enough date, coming in at €27 per person for a 1-hour session.

6. Jewellery Making

Silverworks, Drury Street, more info here

If it’s not too awkward to make a ring together, a jewellery-making course at Silverworks is a great way to spend an afternoon. Their 2-hour workshops are incredibly popular for a date night, and if the date goes really well they also have a wedding ring-making workshop! Priced at €85 they are a little bit on the spennier side of things, but you genuinely learn a lot about the process and also get a handmade ring to take home- winner winner.

5. The Zoo

Phoenix Park, more info here

Heading to the Zoo is a great shout whether you are on a date or not. If it’s a bit early on in the relationship it can be nice to have things outside of the two of you to talk about to ease the awkwardness, and at the Zoo there are umpteen talking points. Bond over how small the meerkats are, how playful the sea lions are and if either one of you can spot the tiger.

4. Trip to Glasnevin Cemetery and a pint in the Gravediggers


Call it morbid, but one of the first dates I went on with my partner was to Glasnevin followed by a pint and some excellent tapas in the Gravediggers. While you might feel the urge to sing The Smiths’ lyrics as you walk along the graves, the cemetery truly is a fascinating slice of Dublin and indeed Irish history. If you are early on in the relationship you’ll also be able to gauge how irritating they are about Guinness depending on how they tackle a Gravediggers pint.

3. Karaoke

Maneki, Dawson Street, more info here

There’s something about being serenaded that gets things heating up on a date, the beautiful thing about Karaoke is that they don’t need to be able to sing to do it. Show your loved one just how you really feel by banging out some Seal, Barry White or even Chappell Roan, depending on how the date is going. Grab a bite to eat from the delicious Maneki kitchens before entering into the private groovy karaoke room for the night to sing and smooch to your heart’s content.

2. Dumpling-making workshop

Lucky Tortoise, Temple Bar’s Asdill’s Row, more info here

What’s better than learning a new skill and using your hands on a date? Don’t answer that. Anyway, keep an eye on Lucky Tortoise’s Instagram page they tend to do once-off classes every month or so during the national holidays. Included in the night is a welcome drink, a demonstration from chefs, the chance to eat what you’ve made and even a prize for the best-made dumpling. The team also cater to vegan and vegetarian participants on the night.

1. Wine tasting

Ely Wine Bar, Ely Place, more info here

You get to try four different (generous) glasses of wine, which are picked based on the weather and whatever bottles piqued the team’s interest that day. It makes for a more interesting wine tasting, than some of the more formulaic ones that choose very fixed grape varieties/wine styles. Sommelier Ian chatted with us about each glass in great detail, discussing wine-making processes and tasting notes. ⁠There’s also some excellent cheese and charcuterie sharing plates because you gotta know how the wine tastes with the food yanno. A great shout for date night, a birthday or just even something a little different during the week. ⁠It’s on most Wednesdays during the Summer (check their website for all the dates). ⁠

Did we miss any? Give us a shout on [email protected]

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