This post covers some of the best things to do in Dublin in August, updated for 2023, including a variety of family-friendly entertainment, nighttime events, and free activities and events.
Be sure to read our post on the weather in Dublin in August before packing for your trip.
TOP EVENTS AND THINGS TO DO DUBLIN IN AUGUST
Below are our favorite events and activities to do this July. For more ideas, take a look at our post about things to do in Dublin at any time of year!
1. Attend a Concert
Dublin is a city that loves music. Great artists and bands are playing year-round, and this August the city will be visited by some fantastic musicians.
- Indigo Girls | August 17th
- The Vamps | August 25th
- Noel Gallagher's High Flying Birds | August 27th
- Franz Ferdinand | August 27th
If you're willing to travel outside Dublin, there are a few music festivals taking place in August.
- Indiependence Festival | August 4th-6th | Mitchelstown, Co. Cork | Feat: The Coronoas, Anne-Marie, Two Door Cinema Club, and more
- All Together Now Festival | August 4th-6th | Curraghmore Estate, Co. Waterford | Iggy Pop, Lorde, Sugababes, and more
2. See the Fighting Irish Play Navy
The annual Aer Lingus College Football Classic, which brings two well known American football teams to Ireland takes place in August.
The game takes place on August 26th at Aviva Stadium and tickets can be found here.
If you're interested in other sports, Dublin is serious about its football and rugby. The games make great family outings!
- Ireland Rugby Union | note that the Bank of Ireland Nation Series takes place August 5th and 19th at Aviva Stadium
3. Celebrate National Heritage Week
In August you'll find the annual National Heritage Week celebrations in Ireland at large.
There will be activities and events promoting Ireland's heritage at historical sites, landmarks, museums, and beyond.
Hear experts discuss Ireland's history, folklore, and traditions. There is also sure to be some amazing music and dance on offer. And there will be nature walks, graveyard tours, art exhibitions, and much more.
The week runs from August 12th-20th.
Many of these events and activities are free. Visit the National Heritage Week website for more information.
4. Take a Hop-On Hop-Off Tour
One of the most popular tour options is the hop-on-hop-off buses that take you directly to the popular spots, with audio guides to narrate the route.
If you want to discover the best foodie spots, why not take the Dublin Secret Food Tour? This walk includes 6 stops and a variety of great dishes including Irish stew, whiskey, cheese, and ice cream.
Alternatively, pay-what-you-like walking tours are a budget-friendly way to enjoy a summery Dublin day.
5. Save Money With a City Pass
If you’re planning on visiting a lot of popular attractions while you’re in Dublin, you could save some money with a Dublin city pass
The biggest pass offered in this city is an all-inclusive pass which includes entry to the most popular attractions in Dublin.
There is also a travel pass which makes utilizing public transportation easy and includes some other perks.
Here are some of the best locations and tours included with a Dublin tourist pass:
- Guinness Storehouse
- Distillery Tours
- Hop-on-Hop-off Bus Tour
- Christ Church Cathedral
- St. Patrick’s Cathedral
- Croke Park Tour
- Dublin Castle
- Dublin Zoo
To see how much money a pass could save you, please read our post covering Dublin tourist passes.
6. Tour Croke Park
The Gaelic Games are held at Croke Park. They're run by the Gaelic Athletic Association (GAA) and you'll find the GAA Museum there.
In addition to museum access, the behind-the-scenes tour will show you the media centre, dressing rooms, and the players' tunnel.
Check out the Dublin Pass for an included Croke Park experience.
You can also find more family-friendly activities in our full post.
7. Visit the Trinity College Library and Dublin Castle
At Trinity University Library you will find the Book of Kells, an 800 AD illuminated manuscript of the four Gospels of the New Testament and one of Ireland's most famous treasures.
During the tour, you will view the intricacy, detail, and magnificence of the book while a guide explains its significance to medieval history in Ireland.
8. Enjoy the Big Grill BBQ Festival
Head over to Herbert Park for the family-friendly 4-day BBQ festival, with food prepared by master chefs from Ireland and beyond.
The festival offers heaps of small-plate BBQ dishes so you can try as many different dishes from as many chefs as possible.
Craft beers, cider, wines, cocktails, whiskey, gin, juices, soft drinks, coffee, and teas will be on offer as well.
There's also live music, things to do for kids, and various other activities for adults.
Events take place August 17th-20th. For more information and tickets, visit the Big Grill website.
9. Visit the Guinness Storehouse
Guinness is one of the most famous brand names in all of Ireland, and its home storehouse and factory is in Dublin.
They’re also one of the most popular tourist attractions in the city!
It is easy to grab a ticket for a self-guided tour to walk through the storehouse and learn how the beer is made.
Once you’ve made it to the end, their Gravity Bar has beautiful views of Dublin in all directions, and enjoy a free pint of Guinness (or a soft drink).
Note: This attraction is listed on multiple Dublin city passes.
10. Explore Dublin Castle
Dublin Castle is a fun historic building to visit. It was originally built right next to the “dark pool” that, in Irish Gaelic, gives Dublin its name.
Now, of course, that pool has been turned into a lovely garden. And there’s plenty more to see, from fully-furnished staterooms to architecture and artwork.
If you’d like to see inside some of the state apartments and the chapel, you’ll need to purchase a guided tour ticket.
Note: The paid sections of Dublin Castle are included for free with the purchase of multiple tourist discount passes.
11. Attend One of Ireland's Top Equestrian Events
If you like horses, this is the event for you.
Some of the top riders in the world come to Dublin with their amazing steeds.
In addition to various equestrian competitions, including dressage, horse jumping, and demonstrations, there are social events, shopping, and family-friendly activities.
The Dublin Horse Show takes place annually at the Royal Dublin Society showgrounds.
Events take place August 9th-13th. For more information, visit the Dublin Horse Show website.
12. Listen to Traditional Sessions
Ireland is well-known for its traditional music.
You can easily recognize its folk music from the upbeat combination of fiddles, flutes, and other stringed instruments. Some traditional groups throw in a bagpipe for good measure.
One of the most popular pubs for a Trad Session is the Cobblestone.
However, if you walk past a few pubs in the evenings it should be simple to find a good performance or jam session with traditional musicians happening.
And most of this music is completely free!
Note: Even though it isn’t required, we encourage you to tip performers or purchase drinks when listening to free music.
13. Step Aboard the Jeanie Johnston Famine Ship
The Jeanie Johnston ship made 16 trips to North America during the great famine of Ireland.
Getting aboard this replica of that ship will allow you to see what it was like for the Irish people who were fleeing the country at that time.
Emigrating away from their home was a difficult journey, but this hands-on museum will give you a taste of the times and be an interesting way to learn about history.
Note: Entry to this museum is on some tourist passes.
14. See a Play or Musical
Dublin is home to excellent theatre productions that are both modern and traditional, depending on where you look.
A play, musical, or dance is performed somewhere in the city on a weekly basis.
A few theatres you might check for shows are:
- Abbey Theatre | Irelands National Theatre, this was home to premiers of works by some of Ireland's best-known playwrights
- Gate Theatre | a big player in Irish theatre history that has a focus on classic and contemporary plays
- Gaity Theatre | dating back to the 1800s, this theatre attracts top-tier musicals, plays, comedy shows, and more
- Liberty Hall Theatre | known for modern plays written by both Irish and international playwrights
- Olympia Theatre | dating back to the 1800s, this theatre has plays, comedy shows, concerts, and more
In August there are plays on offer such as The Murder of Michael Collins, The M**der of Wolfe Tone,
You can find Annie the Musical, Shrek the Musical, and Titanic the Musical.
15. See Riverdance!
Eurovision Song Contest winner Riverdance stormed the world in 1994.
Its dynamic dance routines, traditional Irish dance costumes, and Irish-flavored modern music have been captivating audiences ever since in the form of Riverdance: The Show.
If you've dreamed of seeing this iconic stage production, you're in luck. The show is in Dublin from June 15th-September, celebrating the show's 25th anniversary.
Visit the Gaiety Theatre website for tickets and information on Riverdance.