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All too often newcomers and tourists get drawn by the more commercial side of Temple Bar represented by its famously overpriced pubs. Did you know, Temple Bar offers a great selection of cultural activities.

Your first visit to Temple Bar

There is a good chance that as a newcomer to Dublin you have already heard about Temple Bar. Your tourist guide probably told you that it is the place to go to for ‘a bit of craic’. After the visit, and with your wallet significantly lighter, you may have wondered what the fuss is all about and carried on with your exploration elsewhere.

What local Irish people think about Temple Bar

Among locals Temple Bar has a reputation of a tourist trap. If you ask people from Dublin what are the first three things that come to their minds when they think of Temple Bar, they are likely to say ‘expensive bars’, ‘drunk tourists; and ‘hen parties’. Temple Bar is undoubtedly set up to be profitable but its reputation of a tourist trap does not seem to be fair. All too often newcomers and tourists get drawn into the more commercial side of Temple Bar represented by its famously overpriced pubs, while Temple Bar offers a great selection cultural venues and activities.

Cultural venues in Temple Bar

With over 50 cultural venues and events there is plenty to choose from. Here is our selection of what you definitely should check out:

Irish Film Institute

The Irish Film Institute is one of the finest establishments in Ireland for lovers of good cinema who wish to celebrate the art of moving images. Check regularly for classic film screenings, thematic festivals and free events. If you are a hardcore film enthusiast, you may also consider getting the IFI membership deal for cheaper tickets, numerous discounts and other benefits.


Irish Film Institute, 6 Eustace St, Dublin 2

Meeting House Square

Meeting House Square a unique place for outdoor events. Retractable umbrellas shield it from often unforgiving Irish weather. Meeting House Square is equipped with a stage, large screen and hi-tech projection facilities which provide endless possibilities. Events held there range from theatrical performances, film screenings to street markets… and there is much more to discover. Check out their promotional video.


Temple Bar Food Market

The Temple Bar Food Market is one of the finest examples of how the Meeting House Square is utilised. Every Saturday from 10am – 4.30pm lovers of good food can sample and purchase high quality selections of artisan cheese, orchard produce, organic fruit and vegetables, meats, olives and plenty of other culinary delights. Stalls and available products change depending on the season.

Gallery of Photography

The Gallery of Photography is a stage for exhibitions from many of the most important names in contemporary photography, admission is free. In addition to being a place for showcasing photography, the Gallery is running photography courses and rents out facilities at concession prices to registered members. Check out their website for a list of current events and available courses. Facilities available include a digital studio and a darkroom.


Gallery of Photography, Meeting House Square, Temple Bar, Dublin 2

Button Factory

The Button Factory is one of Dublin’s most exciting venues for live music. Formally a part of Temple Bar Music Centre, it offers unbeatable acoustics, large capacity and a great line-up of gigs. Students of the affiliated Sound Training Centre get to practice there.

The New Theatre

The goal of this 66 seat theatre is to support new writing. Young Artists, Performers, Writers, Directors and Technicians get a chance to bring their artistic vision to life in a professional state-of-the-art setting. From the theatre’s mission statement:

The New Theatre seeks to provoke debate and to stimulate engagement and interest, they seek to give both Artists and audiences access to Irish Theatre – particularly young people who might not otherwise have access to this rich heritage.


The New Theatre, 43 East Essex Street, Temple Bar, Dublin 2

Project Arts Centre

The Project Arts Centre describes itself as:

Ireland’s leading centre for the presentation and development of contemporary art, dedicated to supporting artists and protecting the next generation of artists across all forms of the performing and visual arts.


Project Arts Centre, 39 East Essex Street, Temple Bar, Dublin 2

Temple Bar Gallery + Studios

Temple Bar Gallery + Studios (TBG+S), focuses on what’s new in contemporary visual art. TBG+S celebrates being 30 years in existence. TBG+S also provides affordable facilities and space for artists to showcase their exhibitions. The Gallery aims at bringing you closer to the artist by means of organised talks and events.



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