Things to do in Dublin – Self-Catering Stay

Merrion Mews, a charming old coachman’s cottage located just off Merrion Square, is the perfect choice for your stay in Dublin. This beautifully renovated property, conserved and restored  by Irish Landmark Trust, dates back to the 1790s and combines historical character with modern comforts, making it a unique experience in the heart of Dublin City Centre.

With its convenient parking and lovely garden, Merrion Mews is an ideal base for exploring Dublin’s top attractions. The well-equipped kitchen allows you to prepare meals with ease, while the cosy living spaces provide a comfortable place to relax after a day of sightseeing.

Staying at Merrion Mews is more than just a place to rest your head; it’s an opportunity to immerse yourself in Dublin’s rich history and culture. To help you make the most of your visit, we’ve created a 7-day itinerary packed with our top recommendations for things to do and see in the area.

The History of Merrion Mews

The mews building at the rear of No.63 Merrion Square is an integral part of one of the most significant survivals of an 18th-century Dublin townhouse. Built in 1792/93, the Merrion Mews has retained much of its original character and fabric, offering visitors a unique glimpse into Dublin’s rich history. The main house’s garden is one of the few remaining gardens in Merrion Square and is notable for being the only one that still features its original 19th-century design and layout.

The Mews itself, situated on the quaint Fitzwilliam Lane, boasts its own private garden, coach yard, coach house, and stables. The stables have been carefully conserved and now serve a new purpose – providing a place for the horses of the Mounted Unit of An Garda Siochana to rest and rehydrate while on duty in the city centre.

Day 1: Discovering Dublin’s History and Heritage

Begin your day with a short 15-minute walk from Merrion Mews to EPIC The Irish Emigration Museum. Here, you’ll explore the fascinating story of Irish emigration and its impact on the world. Learn about the reasons behind the departure of over 10 million Irish people and discover how the Irish diaspora shaped the world. To plan your visit, book tickets here.

Next, head to the National Museum of Ireland – located just a stone’s throw from Merrion Mews. Delve into Ireland’s rich archaeological heritage as you view exhibits ranging from prehistoric times to the Middle Ages. Plan your visit today!

In the afternoon, take a short 15-minute ride on the red Luas line to Kilmainham Gaol, one of the largest unoccupied gaols in Europe. Open from 1796 to 1924, this immersive and sometimes harrowing tour will give you insights into the heroic and tragic events that shaped Ireland’s emergence as a modern nation. 

For a more in-depth look at Dublin’s history and heritage, join a guided historical walking tour. These tours typically last around 2 hours and offer a fantastic opportunity to explore the city’s landmarks and hidden gems with a knowledgeable guide. We recommend booking your tour in advance.

Finally, end your day with a relaxing Dublin Bus Tour. Hop on and off at any stop to explore the city at your own pace, or simply sit back and take in the sights of Dublin from the comfort of your seat. 

Day 2 Art and Culture & Galleries

Today is all about immersing yourself in Dublin’s vibrant art and cultural scene. Here’s your guide:

National Gallery of Ireland: Start your day at the National Gallery, home to a rich collection of artworks from various periods. Take your time strolling through the galleries, where you can admire pieces by renowned artists such as Caravaggio and Rembrandt. Don’t forget to check out the free tours and workshops available for deeper insights into the artworks.

Hugh Lane Gallery: Head to the Hugh Lane Gallery, where you’ll find an impressive array of Irish and international art. From striking Impressionist paintings to contemporary installations, there’s something to captivate every art enthusiast. Be sure to explore the unique Francis Bacon studio and the intricate stained glass designs by Harry Clarke.

Trinity College and the Book of Kells: Explore the historic grounds of Trinity College, Ireland’s oldest university. Join a guided tour to uncover the university’s fascinating history and marvel at the iconic Long Room Library, home to the renowned Book of Kells. Admire the intricate illustrations and learn about the ancient manuscripts housed within its walls.

Museum of Literature Ireland (MOLI): Immerse yourself in the world of Irish literature at MOLI, where you can explore the works of iconic Irish authors. Discover the stories behind celebrated literary figures and gain insights into Ireland’s rich literary heritage.


Irish Museum of Modern Art (IMMA): Experience the contemporary art scene at IMMA, housed within the historic Royal Hospital Kilmainham. Explore thought-provoking exhibitions featuring works by both established and emerging artists. Immerse yourself in the vibrant atmosphere of Ireland’s modern art world.

Little Museum of Dublin: Finish your day with a visit to the Little Museum of Dublin, located in a charming Georgian townhouse. Join a guided tour to uncover the city’s history and hear fascinating stories about its past. From historic events to cultural milestones, the museum offers a unique glimpse into Dublin’s heritage.

Day 3: Dublin’s Culinary Scene

Bring your appetite along as you discover some of Dublin’s culinary delights, offering a diverse array of flavours and treats.

Temple Bar Food Market: Start your day at the Temple Bar Food Market, just a short stroll from Merrion Mews. Browse through the stalls filled with freshly baked bread, artisanal cheeses, and local produce. Create your perfect picnic basket with an assortment of gourmet goodies from passionate vendors.

Howth Food Market: Take a scenic DART ride to Howth and explore its bustling food market, open on weekends. Sample freshly caught seafood and artisanal treats while soaking in the coastal charm of this picturesque village.

Dun Laoghaire Food Market: Venture south to Dun Laoghaire and discover its vibrant food market, held every Sunday. Explore the diverse selection of international cuisine and local specialities while enjoying the lively atmosphere of this seaside town.

Foodie Tours: Join a culinary adventure with Delicious Dublin Food Tours, offering guided walks to hidden culinary gems. Spend a few hours exploring the city’s food scene and sampling delicious dishes crafted by local chefs. Alternatively, indulge in a unique foodie experience with Fab Food Trails, offering tours focused on gastronomy and local culture.

Perfect Pint Tour: Beer enthusiasts can enjoy the Perfect Pint Tour, learning the art of pouring the perfect Guinness pint. Discover the history of Ireland’s iconic stout while visiting local pubs and breweries.

Breweries and Distilleries: Explore Dublin’s craft beer and whiskey scene with visits to renowned establishments like the Guinness Storehouse and the Jameson Distillery. For a taste of local brews, check out smaller breweries like Rascals Brewing and distilleries like Roe and Co and Teeling Distillery. Note: Advance booking may be required for tours and tastings.

Day 4: Musical Interlude

Discover Dublin’s vibrant music scene, where traditional tunes and contemporary beats blend seamlessly to create an unforgettable experience.

Irish Traditional Music Archive: Located on Merrion Square, this archive houses a collection of recordings, books, and exhibits that showcase Ireland’s rich musical heritage.

The Cobblestone Pub: Experience the authentic sounds of Irish music at The Cobblestone Pub in Smithfield. Join locals and visitors for daily traditional music sessions, where lively tunes fill the air and the spirit of Ireland comes alive.

Musical Pub Crawl: Immerse yourself in Dublin’s musical traditions with a Musical Pub Crawl or Dinner Show. Explore traditional pubs while enjoying live Irish music, songs, and stories. It’s a lively and engaging way to experience Dublin’s vibrant culture.

Musical Landmarks: Take a stroll through Dublin and discover its musical landmarks, including the Rory Gallagher corner in Temple Bar, the Phil Lynott statue on Harry Street, and the Luke Kelly statue in the Docklands.

Dalton’s Musical History Tour: Uncover the hidden gems of Dublin’s music history with Dalton’s Musical History Tour. Available by appointment, this tour offers a fascinating insight into the city’s musical heritage and iconic landmarks.

Windmill Lane Studio: Journey through the evolution of Irish music at Windmill Lane Studio. Explore exhibits that highlight the impact of music on Irish culture and experience the magic of recording studios where legendary tracks were born.

Rock n Stroll Trail: Take on a self-guided Rock n Stroll Trail and uncover Dublin’s musical legacy. Visit recording studios, concert venues, and iconic landmarks that have shaped the city’s rock ‘n’ roll history.

Day 5: Nature Escapes

Escape the hustle and bustle of the city and reconnect with nature in Dublin’s stunning parks.

Phoenix Park: Phoenix Park is one of Europe’s largest enclosed urban parks. Why not rent a bike and explore its vast landscapes, where you might even encounter deer roaming freely? While here, don’t miss the chance to visit Dublin Zoo or Áras an Uachtaráin, the official residence of the President of Ireland. Don’t miss out on the Phoenix Park Tours available.

Other Parks to Explore: Discover Dublin’s diverse array of parks, each offering its own unique charm and natural beauty. From the serene St. Stephen’s Green to the historic Iveagh Gardens, there’s no shortage of green spaces to explore and enjoy. Check out the best parks in Dublin.

Day 6: Coastal Exploration

DART Coastal Journey: Take a leisurely ride on the DART, Dublin’s coastal train, to discover charming seaside towns like Dalkey, Killiney, and Dun Laoghaire to the south, or Clontarf, Howth, and Malahide to the north. Head to some of the local swimming spots, savour delicious seafood, and browse local markets along the way. Don’t forget to make a splash at the Clontarf Outdoor Pool for stunning ocean views.

Boat Tours: Experience Dublin’s beauty from the water with a scenic boat tour of Dublin Bay. Choose from various options, from relaxing cruises to exhilarating adventures, and enjoy breathtaking views of the city skyline and coastline.

Viking Splash Tour: Set out on a fun-filled Viking Splash Tour for a unique exploration of Dublin. Hop aboard a WWII amphibious vehicle and traverse the city streets before plunging into the water for an unforgettable aquatic adventure.

Day 7: Hidden Gems

Discover Dublin’s lesser-known treasures, waiting to be explored:

Marsh’s Library: Step into the past at Marsh’s Library, Ireland’s oldest public library. Marvel at its rare collection of books and manuscripts dating back to the 16th century.

Swenys Pharmacy: Immerse yourself in literary history at Swenys Pharmacy, famously featured in James Joyce’s “Ulysses.” Attend daily readings by passionate volunteers and experience Dublin’s literary heritage come to life.

The Gravediggers & Glasnevin Cemetery: Take a tour of Glasnevin Cemetery, Ireland’s necropolis, and delve into its rich history and folklore. Afterwards, unwind with a pint at The Gravediggers, a historic pub adjacent to the cemetery.

Relics of St. Valentine: Visit Whitefriar Church on Aungier Street to pay homage to the relics of St. Valentine, the patron saint of love. Explore the beautiful shrine and discover the fascinating history behind St. Valentine.

When to Visit

Dublin buzzes with activity year-round, offering something for everyone no matter the season. While larger festivals like St. Patrick’s Weekend draw crowds, there’s always plenty happening in the city.

For a comprehensive list of events, festivals, and happenings, visit Visit Dublin Events.

One not to miss: Heritage Week when all Irish Landmark Trust properties open their doors to the public, providing a unique glimpse into Ireland’s heritage and history. For more details, check out Heritage Week.

How to Book

Ready to experience the charm of Merrion Mews and other Irish Landmark Trust properties? Booking is simple: Visit Irish Landmark Trust to reserve your stay.

Remember, the longer you stay, the more you save! Take advantage of discounted rates for extended stays and immerse yourself fully in Dublin’s rich culture and attractions. With so much to explore, why not add an extra night to your itinerary?

All information here is correct at the time of writing ( Summer 2024). Please always check relevant websites for up-to-date information and booking details. Please note in high season it is recommended that you pre-book most activities and Restaurants in Dublin.

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Booking Conditions


It is possible to reserve dates online at but bookings are not confirmed until a confirmation email is received from the bookings desk.     


Your booking must be for holiday purposes only.  Irish Landmark reserve the right to refuse hire for purposes other than holiday accommodation. When you make a booking, you accept full responsibility for all persons who will use or visit the property during the period booked.  When you book, you agree to indemnify us against all loss and damage arising directly or indirectly to the property and its contents from any deliberate or negligent act or omission by yourself, or any person accompanying you. 


The hiring contract shall be between the Hirer and Irish Landmark and made subject to these Booking Conditions . The Contract of Hire is not effective until Irish Landmark dispatches to the Hirer written confirmation of a booking. 


Irish Landmark reserves the right to increase or decrease the price of unsold holidays at any time. However, such amendments to price will not be applied to holidays already confirmed.   


All prices quoted are based on current prices and rates of V.A.T. at the time of going to press. Irish Landmark is unable to absorb increases in Value Added Tax or any new forms of taxation which may be introduced. Any such increases will be charged as notified and will be payable. 


All bookings can be paid for in full at time of booking. All bookings made within 12 weeks of stay must be paid in full at time of booking. Bookings made more than 12 weeks in advance of stay require a 30% non-refundable deposit with the balance due 12 weeks before arrival.  Irish Landmark shall be entitled to treat any failure to pay by the due date as a cancellation of the booking and will notify the Hirer by email.  The maximum number of payments for a booking will be limited to two – the deposit and balance payment.   A separate payment may be due where an amendment has been made to the original booking.  


Payments can be made by credit/debit card (Visa or Mastercard ONLY).    

Payments for properties in the Republic of Ireland are taken in Euros, payments for properties in Northern Ireland are taken in Great British Pounds. 


Please note that only one voucher can be used per booking.  Vouchers have a strict expiry date. 


Upon receipt of payment by our bookings office, you will receive a confirmation of your reservation.  All charges for the booking will be confirmed in this notification.  Once confirmation has been issued, the Hirer is responsible for the total advertised price of the property and any extras notified.   

AMENDMENTS TO BOOKINGS (excluding cancellations):    

Irish Landmark does not offer a transfer of dates option. A complete change of dates is treated as a cancellation 

CANCELLATION POLICY: We hope that you will not have to cancel your stay, or part of your reservation.  If for any reason this is unavoidable, cancellations must be notified by email to In the event of cancellation (this includes a reduction in number of nights) your deposit is non-refundable and the following cancellation charges will apply:  

Date of Cancellation 

Cancellation Charge 

More than 12 weeks before start date 

The deposit of 30% 

84 – 28 days before start date 

50% of total rental 

Fewer than 28 days 

100% of total rental 

Irish Landmark does not operate a cancellation insurance scheme for any reason, including Covid-19, and strongly recommends that all guests take out full holiday insurance cover.    

PARTY SIZE AND COMPOSITION:  In no circumstances may more than the number of persons listed on the booking form occupy the property overnight.   Irish Landmark reserves the right to refuse admission if this condition is not observed. Bookings can only be made by adults and cannot be accepted from anyone under the age of 21.  Irish Landmark only allows guest stays where the lead guest is aged 21 years or over.   


Upon receipt of final payment, you will receive Access Details and Important Information via email about your rental. This includes the contact information of the Local House Manager, directions to the property, arrival and departure time, etc. However, the specific arrival time must be agreed with the relevant local House Manager at least four days prior to holiday start date.  It is the responsibility of the Hirer to arrive at the property at the time agreed with the House Manager. Irish Landmark reserves the right to levy an additional charge if the property is not vacated in accordance with these terms on the day of departure.  


The number of day visitors will be limited to the capacity of the property – i.e., a 2-person property may have 2 day visitors, etc.   Prior written consent must be obtained from Irish Landmark Trust for additional numbers of day visitors. 

PERSONAL BELONGINGS: Baggage and personal belongings are always at the Hirers risk. No responsibility can be accepted for loss or damage to any car or its contents. 


Only certain Irish Landmark Trust properties accept a dog.  ALWAYS check this before you book.  Hirers who have made a reservation and are taking a dog will be required to read and agree to special terms, which details the conditions of bringing a dog to one of these properties.  Failure to comply with these conditions could result in the guest being asked to leave a property.  The rental cost is non-refundable in such cases.   


Irish Landmark respectfully request that you charge your electric vehicle at the nearest charging point and not at the property.  


The Hirer is responsible for the property and is expected to take all reasonable care of it. Our House Managers work hard to maintain and clean the buildings and aim to ensure that the property is in a satisfactory condition for your enjoyment.  We ask that you leave the property in a clean and tidy condition upon departure, including all equipment, utensils etc. If the property is left in an unsatisfactory condition and additional cleaning costs are incurred, Irish Landmark reserves the right to recover these costs from the Hirer.   All breakages and damage must be reported to the House Manager immediately so that they can be rectified. All breakages and damage are the legal responsibility of the Hirer and the cost of repair or replacement must be paid to Irish Landmark upon demand.   If there are problems relating to the functioning of the building, please let the House Manager know immediately. Please note that candles are NOT permitted at any Irish Landmark property. Smoking is not allowed inside any Irish Landmark property. 


While every effort has been made to ensure that the representations stated on our website, or any printed literature, are made in good faith, neither they nor any oral representations made by employees or representatives of Irish Landmark Trust will create liability on the part of Irish Landmark. 


There shall be no liability for any claim arising from the act, omission or neglect or default of Irish Landmark Trust, its employees or representatives unless proved to be done with intent to cause damage or recklessly and with knowledge that loss or danger would probably result. Irish Landmark’s agents, servants and employees or other representatives have no authority to waive or modify these Conditions other than in writing. 


On rare occasions Irish Landmark may need access to the property for essential maintenance work, should it be necessary, Irish Landmark will give you as much notice as is possible.   There is no need for you to stay in the property since our House Manager can accompany any such visits. 


If you have any complaint during your holiday, please contact the House Manager.  If the matter is not dealt with to your satisfaction, please email outlining details of your complaint.   


Irish Landmark reserves the right to refuse any booking and cancel any booking already made, if in its absolute discretion it considers this to be necessary. Where a booking is cancelled by Irish Landmark, every effort will be made to offer an alternative holiday at no increase in cost.  If the Hirer does not accept the alternative holiday offered, Irish Landmark will return to the Hirer the deposit paid and any other sum paid to Irish Landmark by the Hirer.  Liability for all consequential loss, damage and disappointments is accordingly limited to such return. 


It is the hirer’s responsibility to ensure they book a specific dog-friendly property if they are bringing a dog.  There are specific terms and conditions that to which the hirer must adhere: 

We allow a dog, but only when they have been booked in and paid for. The “Taking a Dog” option must be selected at time of booking.  A charge will apply.  

Our policy is strictly ONE DOG. If you arrive at the property with more than one dog the House Manger is entitled to deny you access to the property.  If it becomes known during/after your stay that more than one dog is/was with you, you may be asked to vacate the property and a charge of €100/£100 per dog will apply. 

You must bring your own crate/bed in which your dog can sleep.  Please also bring bowls, towels, and waste bags for your dog. 

Your dog must be house-trained and kept under proper control.  Dogs are STRICTLY not permitted on beds, sofas, or any furniture.  There is no exception to this rule.  

Before departure, please thoroughly clean the property, paying particular attention to removing pet hair from rugs and soft furnishings.  A vacuum cleaner is available to you.   

If there is evidence that you have not cleaned up adequately after your stay, you will be charged a flat rate of €100/£100.   

You must double-check that the outside area around the property is free of any foul. Dog fouling inside the property is completely unacceptable.  Guests will be asked to vacate the premises immediately if this is discovered.  

Your dog must not be left unsupervised in the property.  We ask that you take your dog with you when you go out.  Please be mindful of any livestock nearby. 


By accepting a confirmation of a reservation from Irish Landmark the lead guest agrees: 


I have read and agree to be bound by the Booking Conditions. 

I agree to be held responsible for the balance of hire for the property due and payable in accordance with these terms. 

I understand that most Irish Landmark properties have no television or internet access; that some have no washing machines or dishwashers; and that many have limited mobile phone coverage. 

I understand that as the Lead Person, I am responsible, before their arrival, for informing all guests of Irish Landmark’s booking conditions, and for their observance of same. 

If I am bringing a pet or having day visitors, I have particularly noted the special conditions that apply in these situations 


Hirers making a reservation over the telephone are deemed to have read all Booking Conditions and agree to be bound by them.   


Availability Calendar

Check availability for all of our properties at a glance here.

Republic of Ireland
Northern Ireland

Important Notes

1-night stays are not permitted.

Bank Holidays & Special Dates have a set minimum number of nights.

Deposits are strictly non-refundable & non-transferable.

Cancellation Fees will apply if you cancel your reservation.

Terms and Conditions apply to all bookings.

Special Offers and Discounts are not valid against existing bookings.

There are restrictions on arrival and departure dates over the Christmas and New Year periods.
Strictly no arrivals or departures on 24th, 25th and 31st of December.