With Christmas around the corner and the cold beginning to bite, there’s nothing better than sitting down in a cosy pub with friends, right? Here is our rundown of some of the snuggest watering holes in the capital.
John Fallon’s Capstan Bar, the Coombe
The Four Corners of Hell was the colloquial name given to the junction where Dean Street and Patrick’s Street merged under the shadow of St. Patrick’s Cathedral. This crossroads was infamous for having a public house on each corner, leading to some rowdy crowds and punch ups. Oh, how times change. Situated just off this crossroads is John Fallon’s Capstan Bar, a place where the female volunteers of 1916 are said to have met up. Believed to be over 400 years old, you would be hard pressed to find a cosier pub in Dublin this Christmas, or a nicer cheese toastie.
The Abbey Tavern, Howth
Howth can be a chilly place in winter, but the orange glow that emerges from this sixteenth century, actual castle of a pub is well known to northsiders. With its stone walls, flagstone floors and turf fires, an afternoon in this spot over Christmas will be like relaxing on a film set.
The Lord Edward, Christchurch Place
The upstairs bar of this 1890 establishment is one of Dublin’s best kept secrets. Another pub that feels like a Disney movie location, grab a Guinness up here over Christmas, by the big open fire, with one of the best views of Christchurch in the city – what’s not to like?
The Confession Box, Marlborough Street
Irish rebels are said to have called into this small pub, then known as the ‘Maid of Erin’, for communion and confession heard by sympathetic priests from the nearby Pro-Cathedral during the War of Independence. Have a cosy Christmas pint here and bask in the elegance of a bygone era.
The Oval, Abbey Street
Situated just off O’Connell Street, this 1820 premises was destroyed in 1916 but rebuilt the following year, retaining its exterior Victorian façade. Sitting inside this venue feels like having an agreeable Christmas drink on board the Titanic, pre-iceberg.
The Lotts, Liffey Street
Immortalised for eternity in song by Fontaines DC and their epic track, The Lotts, it is hard to differentiate between the front bar here and many front rooms from the late nineteenth century. Ridiculously cosy and snug.
The Dawson Lounge, Dawson Street
Officially Dublin’s smallest pub, with welcoming red carpets and wood panelled walls, most people will walk past this institution and never even know it’s there. A cosy, festive pint to beat all others, if there’s room.
Peter’s Pub, South William Street
A bar with some of the friendliest staff around, this is another one of those places where it feels like having a pint at a family gathering. The seating seems designed for having the craic and the pub glows in winter.
The Hole in the Wall, Blackhorse Avenue
Situated by the Phoenix Park, this is the longest pub in Europe and has been decked out entirely in Christmas decorations. Simply spectacular at night, it is a sight and atmosphere to behold.
John Kehoe’s, South Anne Street
Mr Kernan fell down the inside staircase of this warm and homely venue in James Joyce’s Ulysses. What a thought to contemplate when ordering a drink over the festive period. Grab a pint in the snug at one of the atmospheric venues in Dublin.
J & M Cleary, Amiens Street
There are lots of places where Michael Collins was said to frequent during his time fighting the British empire in Dublin, but this pub was literally his local. Not much has changed on the inside since the Big Fella used to quaff stout on cosy, winter evenings. A wonderful experience, the bar is now up for sale with a €1.35m guide price.
McDaid’s, Harry Street
Hopefully it is cold and rainy outside when having a pint here, as this classic Dublin tavern lends itself to dark evenings in the city. A favoured haunt of Phil Lynott, amongst many other artists, this watering hole provides an electric atmosphere and cosy shelter from the elements.
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