|||

Trinity College

Ireland's most prestigious university, retaining a tranquil collegiate atmosphere in the midst of the city.

TravelCurious Tip

Only a limited number of people are allowed inside the library at a given time, and this can lead to queues - try to head there early to beat the rush.

Walking through the grounds of Ireland’s oldest university, it is easy to forget that you are in the middle of a modern capital city. Spread out over almost 50 acres, its wide-open grassy spaces and ancient quads provide a welcome break from the bustle of central Dublin and manage to combine a friendly, student-driven atmosphere with a strong sense of history. Elizabeth I founded Trinity in 1592 as part of an effort to prevent promising young Dubliners heading to Europe to pursue a university education. Since then, it has developed into one of the world’s most prestigious academic institutions, and can boast alumni such as Oscar Wilde, Francis Bacon and Jonathon Swift.


The Pages of History

Foremost among Trinity’s attractions is its library. A masterpiece of 17th century architecture, its original building would once have towered over the rest of the university. Even now, surrounded by building of comparable size, the old library dominates the view of the university from Nassau Street. Inside are housed no fewer five million books. The most famous of these is the Book of Kells, a 1200-year-old illuminated gospel manuscript widely regarded as one of Ireland’s finest historical artefacts. The old library also features the gorgeous Long Room, whose polished two-storey shelves stretch back a full 65m, interspersed with marble busts of historical figures associated with the university.


Bad luck of the Irish

Another of Trinity’s most important structures is the Campanile, a 30m belltower located in the centre of the university campus. Its size and form are impressive from any angle, but beware walking beneath it - legend has it that anyone passing under the tower when the bells begin to ring will be doomed to a lifetime of bad luck.

Nearby Attractions

See all attractions in Dublin
Irish Houses of Parliament
Today a branch of the Bank of Ireland, the old Irish Parliament buildings were a radical Neoclassical creation.
The Book of Kells
Ireland's most treasured medieval manuscript, dating back to the 9th century.
O'Connell Monument
A memorial to the 19th-century nationalist leader located in the heart of Dublin city.
Trinity College Library
Wander through the endless rows of historical novels.
Grafton Street
The most popular shopping street in Dublin!
Molly Malone Statue
Iconic black bronze statue of Molly and her cart of fish.

Related Tours

Historic Highlights of Dublin: Private Walking Tour
Discover the culture and vibrancy of Ireland between the rolling landscapes and foggy skyline, by taking a historical highlights tour.

  • Explore the best of Dublin with a private guide in just 2.5 hours
  • Relive the history of the city, and even see a historic Viking home.
  • Walk through the gardens of Dublin Castle, with over 800 years of history. 
  • Enjoy the various architectural styles present throughout the city, each speaking to one of the different eras of Dublin.
  • See Ireland’s most famous college, Trinity College.
  • Stroll through several of the city’s famed sites, including Grafton Street, Temple Bar, and St Stephen’s Green.
  • Finish your tour, learning about Molly Malone, where your guide will give you several recommendations to try a traditional Irish pub meal.

Dublin has a rich 2,000-year-old history, spanning from the Celts to the modern-day; this curated walking tour will bring that history alive. On your tour, you will explore the castle’s 800-year history. Near old Christ Church Cathedral, you will learn about the area's history as a Viking settlement, and view the site of the world’s first performance of Handel’s Messiah.

Stepping on the Ha’penny Bridge, a beautiful pedestrian bridge that once charged the eponymous half penny to cross, we will cross the River Liffey to walk within the hallowed campus of the famed Trinity College, Ireland’s first and most acclaimed university. Here you will hear about the college’s numerous treasures and tales of renowned past students, including Oscar Wilde and Bram Stoker. 

Continue your turn about the city with a dive into some of Dublin's most famous architectural buildings, including the Neoclassical 18th century former House of Parliament and the Georgian-style City Hall. You will also visit the famous Temple Bar, Dublin’s cultural and entertainment quarter and one of the liveliest nightlife areas that preserve its medieval street pattern, with many narrow, cobbled streets.

Visit famed O’Connell Street, where you will see The Spire, Daniel O'Connell and James Joyce statues and the General Post Office. This is the very spot where the crowds gathered for the Declaration of Irish Independence and which became the inspiration for poetry and literature of the era. You will hear all about the many writers and rebels from your knowledgeable local guide. Your tour will leave you not only full of the local history of the capital city but also with a great foundation to explore the city at your own leisure. 
Private Walking Tour of Dublin's Literary History
Ireland is famed for its rolling landscapes and tranquillity, so it is no surprise that many famous literary figures grew up in Ireland, and based their novels of such settings.  

  • Visit the famed Trinity College Library where notable Dubliners, like Oscar Wilde and Bram Stoker, studied.
  • Wander Merrion Square, where dozens of famous Dubliners called home, including Yeats and Wilde.
  • Stop by St. Patrick's Cathedral where Jonathan Swift is buried.
  • Stop for a pint in Davy Byrne's pub, famous for its appearance in James Joyce's Ulysses.

Ireland’s Literary Greats
In Merrion Square, where many houses have plaques detailing the rich and famous who once lived in the area, you will learn more about the life of Dublin’s most famous son, the writer and dramatist Oscar Wilde. At St Patrick’s Cathedral, you will hear about the illustrious writer and satirist Jonathan Swift, who had a lifelong connection to the cathedral's Dean. Whilst pausing at his tombstone, you will hear about some of Swift's triumphs and greatest controversies. 

Next, find yourself stepping back into the 18th century with a visit to Marsh’s Library. Unchanged for three centuries, this perfectly preserved library of the early Enlightenment—with its original oak bookcases— houses more than 25,000 rare and obscure books.

On your literary tour of Dublin, you will visit Sweny’s Pharmacy and a literary pub such as Davy Byrne’s. Both made appearances in James Joyce’s Ulysses and are bursting with interesting tidbits about the famous novelist and poet. You and your guide are welcome to stop for a pint, should time allow (you may locally for any drinks you wish to have). 

Dublin: City of Literature

UNESCO recognises Dublin as a City of Literature, reflecting the city’s rich and varied history of writers and writing. During your tour, you will meander through the streets, libraries, and book stores which are woven into the stories and lives of Ireland's most celebrated Irish thinkers. From Nobel Literature Prize winners WB Yeats, GB Shaw and Samuel Beckett to its beloved James Joyce, Dublin is brimming with stories of its favourite authors waiting to be heard. 

One of your tour's highlights includes a visit to the famed Trinity College campus, Ireland's first and most acclaimed university. Here you will learn about the college’s numerous treasures, as well as lesser-known tales of some of its most renowned alumni, like Bram Stoker and Oscar Wilde. 

We built this tour because Dublin played an influential role in the writings of many renowned literary figure for 
Dublin's Private Full Day Highlights Driving Tour
This full day driving tour will whisk you through Dublin's highlights, and give you great insight into Ireland and its people.

  • Enjoy the comfort of a private car for your excursion.
  • Learn about Dublin's extensive history with your private driver guide. 
  • Snap photos of landmark sights, including Trinity College, O'Connell Street, and Dublin Castle.
  • Visit the historic St Patricks Cathedral.
  • Venture towards the  Georgian Henrietta Street. 
As you travel, your driver-guide will inform you about Dublin’s 1,000 year history from the first Viking settlers to the Norman arrival and the building of the city into what you see today. Highlights of this tour include the beautiful Georgian squares and parks of Dublin, the Grand Canal Dock, Trinity College area, Templebar, O’Connell Street, the Guinness and Jameson areas, the historic Phoenix Park, Dublin Castle, St Patricks Cathedral and much more.

On your tour, you will have the opportunity to visit the historic St Patricks Cathedral which dates back to 1211 AD and was lovingly restored in the 1800's by the Guinness family. From St Patricks Cathedral, you will make your way across Dublin to the perfectly preserved Georgian Henrietta Street dating from the mid 1700's to visit this historical townhouse telling the story of Dublin in the 1800's. This site is closed on Monday and Tuesdays so alternatively one can enjoy a tour of Glasnevin Cemetery which has a fascinating history and is very much a who's who of Irish history. 
Private Walking Tour of Dublin with a Local
Travel isn’t just about travel, it’s people, faces, food and cultures, fresh perspectives, discoveries and different ways of life - it’s about uncovering the city’s soul. It’s about connection. On your private, guided tour of Dublin with a local

  • Enjoy meaningful insights and Irish humour with a Dubliner
  • Hear how locals describe Dublin - the experiences that have shaped their worldview, including Brexit and the ‘open-border question.
  • Spend a few hours walking around the city’s highlights - including St Stephen's GreenDublin Castle, and O'Connell Street, with a private, local guide.
  • When open to the public, pop into famed Trinity College, and hear about the famous alumni who have walked its halls.
  • Pick up invaluable recommendations on off-the-beaten-tracks pubs, advice, and tips on finding the best whiskies.
  • Finish your tour over a pint of Guinness - or a coffee or tea- in your local guide’s favourite haunt.
Ireland’s compact capital - with its vibrant, historical and beautiful streets - has witnessed everything from the Great Famine to the fight for Irish Freedom. A city made for walking, easily navigable districts make orientation a breeze, but even if you get lost, the locals are some of the friendliest you will find in the world. The annual St. Patrick's Day Parade attracts millions of revellers to Irish folk songs and Cèilidh dancing, but in Dublin, there are free-flowing pints of “the black stuff” and live music year-round in lively watering holes.

Enjoying a private, guided tour with a local will help you discover the side-streets and stories often missed. Hear the intriguing backstories and learn the backstories and neighbourhood rumours which bring Dublin to life, from the revolution over a century ago to the country’s current relationship with mainland Europe and the United Kingdom

There are no substitutes for anecdotes and first-hand insight – which is why we’ve built this tour: so that you can have a Dubliner's knowledge to help you swerve tourist traps, lengthy queues and over-priced nonsense. While you walk the city, you’ll uncover its authenticity through the eyes of a Dubliner. Your tour is immersive - bringing meaningful and like-minded interesting people together that would never meet if you stuck to the main tourist drag. Experience the world-famous Irish humour, the lilt in the local accent, and great ‘craic’ over a beer or coffee at a local pub, and then jot down your guide’s version of “must do Dublin.

Note: Due to the current restrictions, access to Trinity College grounds may not be possible. When it’s not possible to visit, your guide will give you the historic information from the outside of the College and instead take you to other highlights in the area. 
x

Guides

Join the fastest growing community of professional tour guides.

Partners

Use our easy to integrate toolset to include Tours & Attractions in your customer journey.