Study Abroad: 10 Ways to Spend a Rainy Day in Dublin

Nov 25, 2014 8:18:44 AM / by Stephanie Sadler

You look out the window in the morning and it's raining. You're studying abroad in Dublin and still want to make the most of the day ahead. Our local staff have a few suggestions:

1. VISIT ONE OF DUBLIN'S FREE WORLD-CLASS MUSEUMS. Museums are always great places to take cover on a rainy day, but even better when they’re free. And in Dublin, you’ll find that most of the top museums are free to the public. This includes many world-renowned museums and galleries like the National Museum of Ireland – Archeology, the National Gallery of Ireland, the Chester Beatty Library, the Hugh Lane Gallery, and the Irish Museum of Modern Art.

Photo: Chester Beatty Library by William Murphy

2. LISTEN TO SOME LIVE MUSIC AT WHELAN'S. Stay dry in this traditional pub which offers the warmth of a burning fireplace and convivial patrons with the exception of one rather quiet fellow, The Stone Man, a statue of a lone Dublin drinker propped against the stone bar. The real attraction, though, is the world-renowned live music shows which have included performers like Damien Rice and Artic Monkeys.

Photo: Live music at Whelan's, Dublin by Diana Broeders

3. SEE A MOVIE AT THE IRISH FILM INSTITUTE. Rainy day? Hole yourself up in the Irish Film Institute. Located in the heart of Temple Bar, this is Ireland’s national cultural institution for film. They screen an eclectic mix, from contemporary Irish cinema to Hollywood classics and international gems. The restaurant inside also serves as a nice spot to enjoy a meal before or after a show.

Photo: Irish Film Institute by David Jones 大卫 琼斯

4. INDULGE IN COFFEE AND CAKE AT NOSHINGTON'S. Located just across the street from Griffith College and the CAPA Dublin Program, Noshington’s is handy for students. It's a charming spot to grab a coffee and relax on a soggy day. The staff is incredibly friendly, the baristas make an excellent espresso, and the homemade oreos are always a good idea.

CAPAStudyAbroad_Dublin_Susanne Bach at NoshingtonsPhoto: CAPA's Resident Director for Dublin, Susanne Back heading to Noshington's for tea by Stephanie Sadler

5. ENJOY A PLAY AT THE HISTORIC ABBEY THEATRE. Founded in 1904 by W.B. Yeats and Lady Gregory to support Irish dramatic talent, the Abbey Theatre is one of the most renowned theatres in Ireland. The theatre puts on a variety of plays including the work of classic Irish playwrights like George Bernard Shaw as well as contemporary pieces. Make sure that you take advantage of the student ticket rates.

Abbey Theatre, Dublin by bjaglin

6. TOUR THE HIDDEN GEM THAT IS MARSH'S LIBRARY. Through a nondescript gate around the corner from St. Patrick’s Cathedral, you’ll find the entrance to Marsh’s Library. Virtually frozen in time from its creation in 1707, the original oak bookshelves lined with centuries old volumes will transport you from the busy city life of Dublin. It's an enchanting place to duck into when rain washes over the city.

marsh's library trip advisorPhoto: Marsh's Library, Dublin via Trip Advisor

7. WALTZ AROUND GEORGE'S STREET ARCADE. You can’t miss the impressive row of red brick Victorian buildings along South Great George’s Street with their medieval-looking turrets and cathedral-like grand entrance. The George’s Street Arcade provides an atmospheric covered gallery (which makes it a perfect escape from the wet weather) with a host of small boutiques and restaurants.

Photo: George's Street Arcade by William Murphy

8. BROWSE AT CHAPTER'S BOOKSTORE. It’s a no-brainer to spend an afternoon in Ireland’s largest independent bookstore in a country that has one of the most revered literary traditions in the world. In the land of Yeats, Joyce and Beckett, what better way to dodge a rainfall than to browse thousands of new, bargain and secondhand titles in a bookstore that is 100% Irish-owned?

Photo: Chapters bookstore, Dublin by Cian Ginty

9. EXPLORE DUBLIN'S FAMOUS PUB SCENE. James Joyce famously quipped that trying to cross Dublin without passing a pub would be a good puzzle. The easy solution, of course, would be to stop in every one. While that may not be such a good idea in practice, passing a rainy afternoon responsibly in a cozy Irish pub is a great Dublin experience. For a traditional pub experience, we recommend Mulligan’s, Toners, or John Kavanagh’s at Glasnevin Cemetery (a.k.a. Gravedigger’s Pub).

Photo: Mulligans by muehlmak

10. BOUNCE FROM SHOP TO SHOP ON HENRY STREET. Known in Irish as Sráid Anraí, the Henry Street shopping area in the shadow of the Spire and the General Post Office of O’Connell Street is one of the two main shopping meccas of Dublin (Grafton Street being the other). It's pretty easy to jump from one shop to the other without getting soaked. Henry Street a great place to hunt for bargains, window shop or people watch since 33 million people visit the area every year.

Photo: Henry Street by Paolo Trabattoni

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Topics: Dublin, Ireland