Top 5 Irish Pubs EnchantingIreland.com's top picks for Irish pubs when traveling Ireland
Much of the nightly entertainment revolves around pubs in Ireland, whether it is a traditional Irish music session or just talking with the locals. When you go to Ireland, the pubs are where you will hang each night and we've done that far too much over the years -- so why not compile a list of our five favorite pubs?
Our list isn't based on how old or how popular the Irish pub is but rather how likely we are to go back (more likely how much time we've actually spent in that pub over the years!)
#5 - Foxy John's Pub, Dingle, County Kerry
This little gem is not only an Irish Pub -- but a hardware store all in one! Buy your rat trap (yes, they have them!) while you get your sustanance from Guinness at the same time. We are told you can also rent a bike in the back?
Whenever we bring folks to Ireland for their first trip, we drop in here for a pint (or three) just to get a reaction! It's typically full of locals hanging out during the day so you can really get a good gander and the offerings. It's quiet and relaxing but picks up at night, with the back being quite open and large enough to hold quite a few people.
#4 - O'Donnabhain's Bar, Kenmare, County Kerry
With the bright red exterior you can't miss O'Donnabhain's in Kenmare... and the interior is just your typical Irish pub. It made our list as it is our go-to place when we're in Kenmare, looking for a pint and some music.
The interior is very much a typical Irish pub so don't go looking for anything fancy and while we're at it, the meals are good portions and nice pub-grub. Definitely a great place to kick-back and enjoy the entertainment.
#3 - Dick Mack's Pub, Dingle, Ireland
The reasons we like this pub are many but it originally started with the owner, whom I met in 1999 when taking my cousin to Ireland for her first visit. He was a unique character and those conversations will never be forgotten (nor repeated!) Although I don't expect to see him there, the other locals still entertain by telling their dirty limericks to tourists.
The pub is part pub and junk -- shelves of shoes, belt buckles and more! You sit there and stare around at the boxes and shelves of junk all over the place. Need some wellies (rubber boots)? They have them!
We've had some online feuds with folks stating that Dick Mack's Pub is touristy -- and it may be so, but anytime we've been in there we find locals to talk to and tourists to chat with. It's always been a good mix and we've never had a bad time.
#2 - Auld Dubliner, Dublin, County Dublin
We have to thank our friend Catherine for this, suggesting we meet up with her there anytime we're in Dublin ... and we keep coming back.
The staff is friendly and the place gets packed so get there early! There is entertainment and you'll find it standing-room only downstairs so try to move upstairs for a table and a little quieter.
Perhaps we like it because our friend introduced us to folks and we feel like family when we're there ... but we recommend it to everyone.
Located within the Temple Bar area, you'll have plenty of choices for a good meal ... if you decide not to drink your dinner!
#1 - Gus O'Connor's Pub, Doolin, County Clare
O'Connor's is our go-to place when we're in Doolin, not to say the the other pubs aren't great... it just so happens that O'Connor's was our first pub we ever went to in Ireland and holds quite a few stories over the years (some of which we cannot publish!)
No matter when we've gone to Ireland, we've always found O'Connor's warm and welcoming, great Irish stew, pleasant barenders and some type of traditional Irish music playing. The place hasn't changed much over the years and sometimes that is a comfort when traveling.
In this particular video, this man began singing and captivated the room -- a traditional song with a lovely voice... a great example of a traditional Irish music session.