Dublin is a small city is size but is booming with creativity and character, from its quirky residents to its inherent coolness that is so unique. Which is why people watching in Dublin is almost therapeutic. Plus, it’s a great place to get lost in for the day and soak up the atmosphere.
Whereas once you would have been considered
an “odd fish” (aka, a strange person) for engaging in the art of people
watching, now it seems all the rage.
The concept is simple: you sit and enjoy
watching the world pass you by. This is often enjoyed alongside a book, coffee
or meal and done alone.
Does this sound of interest? Here are the top five places for people watching in Dublin.
5. Simon’s Place – for a solid sandwich
This is one of the veteran coffee shops in Dublin. It has been around since 1997 and is a favourite of those with a penchant for indie rock music and alternative style.
Simon’s Place is a street-facing shop in
George’s Street Arcade (a trendy
Victorian indoor market in the centre of Dublin’s “Creative Quarter”).
As it is a corner store, Simon’s Place
offers views into both the market and out onto Dublin’s vibrant George’s
Street, making for a great people watching spot in Dublin.
To top it off: Simon’s is known to make
some of the best sandwiches in Dublin city – you can thank us later!
Address: George’s Street Arcade, 22 South Great George’s
Street, Dublin 2, D02 XD59
4. St. Stephen’s Green – for park vibes
Another great spot for people watching in Dublin city is St. Stephen’s Green Park. Sitting at the top of Grafton Street, this public park attracts much footfall, and on a sunny day in Dublin, there is nowhere else you’d rather be.
Arrive before lunchtime to snag a good spot
on a bench and bring coffee or a snack to keep you occupied while you spy some
of Dublin’s most interesting characters.
Close to city colleges and universities, businesses and the tourist trail, the clientele of St. Stephen’s Green Park is eclectic as they come and makes for a great people watching spot.
Address: St Stephen’s Green, Dublin 2
3. Clement & Pekoe – for coffee
As one of the leading coffee shops in Dublin, Clement & Pekoe is always busy. Located on South William Street, the café is decent in size, but it is the bench out front that is the most sought-after seating spot.
speciality coffee and a selection of fresh baked sweet and savoury treats
(gluten- and dairy-free usually available), this coffee shop is a favourite of
Arrive early around lunchtime or at
weekends and snag a spot on the wooden bench; without a doubt, this makes for
one of the best people watching spots in
Address: 50 South William St, Dublin 2
2. The Woollen Mills – the literary location
This Dublin café is located at the foot of the Ha’Penny bridge – one of the city’s most iconic bridges linking the Northside to the Southside, over the River Liffey.
The Woollen Mills is a slightly upmarket,
but still affordable, trendy café that offers creative dishes (vegan and
veggies included), solid coffee and
supreme people watching vibes.
With an enclosed outdoor seating area,
enjoy people watching at leisure as masses trek across the iconic bridge that
is synonymous with the cityscape.
Fun fact: once upon a time, the Irish
literary great, James Joyce worked here!
Address: 42 Ormond Quay Lower, North City, Dublin
1. Grogan’s – for a pint
Grogan’s is your quintessential “old man pub”. It is simple and snug with a straightforward approach to pub service.
While its interior leaves much to the
imagination, it is warm and cosy, and you
got to give them kudos for not following the rat race and upgrading the venue.
The main draw for Grogan’s is its perfectly
poured pints of Guinness and its outdoor seating area which boasts tonnes of
heaters and awning for the wet weather, too.
Popular year round, you’ll be hard pushed to find a seat outside on the
weekends or post-work, but if you arrive in good time, you’ll stand a chance.
Perched on the corner of Castle Market and
South William Street, Grogan’s is the perfect spot to observe some of Dublin’s
most interesting characters.
Address: 15 William St S, Dublin 2, D02 H336
Dive in and explore the city like a local.
Read our tips on where to go, what to do and what not to miss…
In compact Dublin, you can easily cover a lot of ground on your own
From nocturnal pub crawling (for educational purposes) to high-adrenaline outdoor activities to fun family-friendly pursuits, choices abound.
You might start with the capital’s supremo tourist attraction, the Guinness Storehouse. Most people do.
Prefer being under the watchful eye of a knowledgeable guide?
There are tons of tours – walking, traveling by bicycle or bus, amphibious vehicle or horse-drawn cart…or even by boat or kayak.
However you choose to get about, you can also experience the true spirit of traditional Irish culture and history through architecture, dance, storytelling, music, theatre, museums and galleries.
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