Dublin Museums & Art Galleries

One of my favourite ways to spend time is visiting museums and art galleries, so I thought I’d share some of my best-enjoyed places in Dublin. If you’re in/around Dublin, then go have a look- and if not, consider this a very good reason to book a trip!

National Gallery

There’s one major reason to visit Ireland’s National Gallery- the Caravaggio, which is an absolute masterpiece. Asides from this one standout painting, I’m a big fan of their medieval collection, which has some lovely pieces. Jack B. Yeats is also very popular, and definitely worth a look! www.nationalgallery.ie

National Museum of Archaeology

As a medieval history student, I’ve spent a lot of time in this museum, which has archaeological artefacts from a wide range of times and places, including Bronze Age Ireland, Ancient Egypt, and the Roman Empire. My personal favourites are the Treasure Room, with its stunning medieval Irish metalwork (including the famous Brooch of Tara) and the bog bodies- creepy but fascinating! As with the National Gallery, National Library and Chester Beatty Library, entry to the National Museum of Archaeology is free. Other branches of the museum include the Natural History Museum, the National Museum of Modern Art, and the National Museum of Decorative Arts. www.museum.ie

Trinity College Old Library

Perhaps I’m a little biased, as I’m a Trinity student and so don’t have to pay, but there is a reason that the Old Library is so popular! The Long Room itself is absolutely stunning (it’s been claimed as the basis for the Jedi Archives, incidentally), with its beautiful vaulted ceiling and alcoves full of old books. The museum itself houses the Book of Kells, one of the finest early medieval manuscripts in Europe, and well worth a visit even if you do only get to see two pages at a time! They do change them around periodically if you fancy a return visit. If you’re interested in early Christian art and/or history, then the accompanying exhibition will be very interesting as well! www.tcd.ie

Chester Beatty Library

A little more exotic than many other Dublin museums, the Chester Beatty contains the private collection of the man it is named for- and what a collection! Religious texts from Christianity, Hinduism, Buddhism, Judaism, Islam and more make up the permanent exhibition, while the other floors house a changing collection of valuable books and artefacts. Some of the items are incredible, such as some of the oldest known surviving copies of the gospels. The Chester Beatty also has a great shop and cafe, making it well worth a visit, especially as it’s free, as mentioned earlier. www.cbl.ie

National Library

I’ve only visited the National Library once, to see the Yeats exhibition, so I can’t comment much, but once again, it’s a free museum, close to the Archaeological Museum and National Gallery, so definitely worth a look. The exhibition was very interesting as well, and not a bad place to hide from the rain! www.nli.ie

House Number 29

Something a bit different- Number 29, Fitzwilliam Street, isn’t a gallery or traditional museum- it’s a restored Georgian house. Tours are run regularly, and I found the tour to be very interesting and informative. The interiors are beautiful as well, if not quite aristocratic, and the cafe in the basement isn’t bad! All in all, a very worthwhile visit. www.esb.ie/no29

Images: National Gallery, Theodora.com, the Telegraph, Dublin-Attractions.com, Nations-Online.com, Irish Times

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One response to “Dublin Museums & Art Galleries

  1. Pingback: a little late… (my apologies) « nirvana says…·

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