Life as a student in Dublin can be expensive. Rent, transport and food can often leave your bank balance a little worse for wear. However, the beauty of Dublin, as Ireland's capital city, is that there's always something to do. Even on the smallest of budgets, there are many little adventures to be had: from open mic nights to scenic strolls, Dublin has lots to do. We’ve put together our top five things to do in Dublin on a student budget.
Go to a Gig
Dublin has one of the best music scenes in Europe, with live music throughout the city every night of the week. If you’re on a budget but want to see some great live music, then an Open Mic night might just be the answer. Doyle’s on Trinity Street plays host to the Ruby Sessions every Tuesday night with international acts such as Ed Sheeran and The Corrs regularly stopping by. If that doesn’t take your fancy Sweeney’s on Dame Street has 3 floors of live music most nights of the week.
The Jeanie Johnston Famine Ship
Stationed at Custom House Quay (right beside NCI, just sayin'), the Jeanie Johnson famine ship replica transports visitors back to one of the most difficult periods in Irish history. Built in 1847, the 408 ton cargo ship was responsible for bringing thousands of poverty stricken emigrants from Ireland to North America during the Great Famine. For €9.50, students can step on board the ship and experience what life was really like for many Irish emigrants during the Great Famine.
Visit the Glasnevin Cemetery
The setting for the Hades episode in James Joyce’s Ulysses, Glasnevin Cemetery is a haven for history buffs. The final resting place of many Irish national figures such as Michael Collins, Eamon De Valera, and Luke Kelly, Glasnevin Cemetery is definitely worth a visit.
Ha’Penny Flea market
The Grand Social on Lower Liffey Street plays host to a weekly Flea Market every Saturday. Patrons can enjoy a pint from the bar while browsing a variety of stalls, with offerings from vintage clothes to contemporary crafts. Various DJ’s also take to the stage each week to provide some feel-good music for shoppers. The Ha’penny Flea market is a great way to spend an afternoon...even if you don’t actually plan on buying anything.
Visit EPIC The Irish Immigration Museum
This new museum about Irish diaspora is a fresh addition to the Dublin's North side attractions list. With a ‘passport’ in your hand, you can visit the multiple interactive galleries, stamp it at each section and embrace your inner kid doing so. EPIC also have multi-language self-guided audio tours so you won’t be lost if English is not your mother tongue.
Originally posted in February 2016 and updated in January 2019.