When we travel to another city, museums are probably the first thing we look at when making our itinerary of things we want to see. And in that sense the city of Dublin offers plenty of possibilities. The city is known for its rich history, heritage and important figures who made the capital of Ireland what it is today, some of its museums show its cultural and historical heritage. And others like the National Gallery display great works of European artists. So here is our selection of the best museums in Dublin that you can’t miss when visiting Ireland’s capital.
It is a museum of mid-19th century full of fantastic pieces. An enjoyable way to spend the afternoon in Dublin, especially if it’s raining. Take time to explore all galleries full of art and sculpture, you can immerse yourself for free in a world of both European and Irish masterpieces, no doubt that the time will fly. The museum exhibits more than 2,500 paintings and 10,000 artworks in other formats, highlighting the works of Vermeer, Caravaggio, Picasso, Van Gogh and Monet.
The Little Museum tells the story of the 20th century in Dublin through several rooms full of various exhibitions. It is the newest addition to the Dublin’s museums since it opened in 2011 and displays over 400 artefacts. It has been generously funded by many Dubliners, and the evolution of Dublin during the last century is reflected in the exhibition. The collection is composed of art, photography, advertising, letters and ephemera that give a fabulous view of the city and its people.
Yes, the Natural History Museums are a commonplace in every European capital and Dublin has one of the most impressive zoological exhibits. It’s in the same complex as the National Museum of Ireland, it has been in operation since 1856 and is still a big hit with visitors. Exhibitions include Irish fauna, a view into the underwater world and an exhibition on the steps of evolution. Well worth a look.
It’s not a secret that Dublin and Ireland in general have a rich literary history. So if you love that world, in Dublin Writers Museum you can discover the life and the secrets of the most famous writers of the country. You’ll find artefacts from the writers themselves, portraits and timelines of the great Irish literary movements and a library full of rare and precious books including some first editions with writing from the author’s themselves inside. Furthermore you will also have international writers who made a contribution to Irish literary history.
The Irish Museum of Modern Art is fortunate to be housed in one of the finest 17th-century buildings in Ireland, the Royal Hospital Kilmainha, which was open as a retirement home and infirmary for nearly 250 years for generations of military veterans who lived and died here. The IMMA boasts over 400,000 visitors a year and a mixture of both permanent exhibitions and temporary collections from many prominent contemporary artists. It includes ancient burial grounds, early Christian monuments, a Viking settlement and a medieval.
Finally, we couldn’t miss the opportunity to mention a different museum with a funny twist that doesn’t follow the line of the above, the National Leprechaun Museum. As you know, the Leprechaun belongs to the folklore of Ireland, the museum opened to bring this tradition to the public. It’s a great opportunity to enter a magical world where nothing is what it seems. Visitors are transported to the depths of Celtic culture to discover all the secrets and stories of goblins and fairy tales!
Would you like to explore some of these museums? Take the opportunity and come to Dublin doing an internship, improving your English skills or working as Au Pair with us!