A day trip to the Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown area can be a leisurely coastal walk followed by treats at an artisanal market, a high-octane adventure through the sea or a more contemplative browse through historical treasures. There truly is something for everyone here.
Dún Laoghaire Harbour, with its elegant Victorian piers, is the perfect spot for a stroll by the sea. It was built in the 19th century as an entry port for the city of Dublin and has long been a favourite for Dubliners. Take the East Pier 1.3km walking path and enjoy fantastic views from the Dublin marina out across the bay. Alternatively, hire boats or bikes to enjoy the seascape or for a speedier maritime experience, opt for kayaking or power boating.
A mere 8 miles from urban life, the Dublin Mountains offer 43km of mountain trails and hikes, ranging from gentle climbs to more arduous treks. Either way, you’ll be rewarded with amazing views of Dublin and its surrounds.
Whether its Ticknock or Three Rock Mountain, you’ll experience unique rock formations, romantic fairy castle ruins and plenty of rare flora and fauna along the way. Or hike up Killiney Hill, an ideal spot to take in the views spanning from the Wicklow Mountains across the city to the Howth Peninsula.
There are numerous historical landmarks in this part of Dublin, most notably The National Maritime Museum of Ireland a converted cathedral which houses unique treasures of maritime history such as artefacts, maps, models and books, detailing our age-old relationship with the sea.
Dalkey Castle and Heritage Centre is a 15th century castle, early Christian church and heritage centre all in one. The guided tours include a live theatre performance with costumed actors depicting life as it was in the Castle centuries ago.
There is an array of public parks suitable for Sunday strolls or weekday runs. With ample parking nearby, and a place to enjoy a cuppa, Marlay Park or the People’s Park is the ideal day out. At the weekends, you’ll find local farmers’ markets offering seasonal and artisan produce.
For golf-lovers, Dún Laoghaire–Rathdown offers more than a dozen courses of lush greens and welcoming clubhouses. If it’s a flutter you’re after, then a day at the famous Leopardstown Racecourse is a year-round option for friends to enjoy together.
A varied and frequent festival schedule offers music, historic and literary treats. Join the recitations at the annual Poetry Now Festival in Dún Laoghaire or the literary festival in Dalkey or catch your favourite bands in Marlay Park at the annual Longitude festival.
The new Central Library and Cultural Centre, dlr LexIcon, is an exciting addition to the area. It has an innovative public “living room” overlooking the park, with adult and junior libraries, a performance space, an art gallery, education workshop space and cafe. Host to regular events, this is certainly one for all the family to enjoy.