Dingle was one of my favourite little fishing villages we stopped in on our family roadtrip through Ireland. Located in County Kerry on the Atlantic coast and the only town on the Dingle Peninsula, this town was probably one of the cutest I’ve ever been too.
With a population of under 2,000 and a sea of great pubs, and by a sea I mean literally there has to be at least 30-50 which is an overwhelming amount for such a tiny town. That’s why there was no question that we knew we had to do a pub crawl to at least visit some of these pubs that make this town what it is today.
After walking around to look for the best to add to our list, here’s what we came up with and what I’d recommend. If you limit yourself to only a drink or two in each, you should be able to complete this in an evening but keep in mind that Irish pubs don’t often stay open all night. Most of these closed by 11:30pm.
Start (or end) at John Benny’s as this is located closest to the pier. John Benny’s boasts a typical pub menu so fill your belly before drinking all night. Owners, John and Ellis are well-known Irish musicians which means this place is one of the best for live music. However, you’ll need to make sure to catch it at the right time. They host music every night during the summer season and keep their Facebook page pretty updated with their musical acts. Remember however, this is a pub crawl in Ireland so if there’s no music while you’re there you’ll likely find it at one of the below places on your route.
O’Flaherty’s is a vintage pub opened in 1957 located not too far from the pier which is why I recommend this as your next stop (or your second last if you’re doing the route backwards). This is one of the few pubs I had been in with an open concept and I loved the character this place had. The stone outside the building dates back to the 1860s and the bar is made from a ship that was lost at sea. The walls are lined with photos and memorabilia that document the history of this pub and Dingle. Live music happens every night starting at 9:30pm and can be found here.
One of the most well known pubs in Dingle, Dick Mack’s was also one of my favourites. This pub opened in 1899 and is named after a leather-craftsman and the family business carries on the tradition with a small leather shop still on the premises. As you drink your beer you’ll scan the shelves to see leather boots, belts, and family memorabilia making this place truly unique. The bar is a bit of a maze with multiple rooms, a back outdoor area and even the traditional snug which was where women used to drink when they came to the bar back in the day. This bar has also been visited by celebrities such as Julia Roberts.
Open since 1871, this bar serves as a general store and a pub. On one side of Currans Pub you’ll see the bar lined with alcohol and the other you’ll see the shelves lined with all the hardware and items you might need. Another one of my favourites along this route because it was so unique. I mean, how often can you shop for nails and beer at the same place?
Get your bike fixed, buy some odds and ends, and enjoy some pints with your friends. Another dual purpose pub in Dingle full of character. Foxy John’s is a small pub with a lot of history. I find in the pubs like this you can’t stop yourself from looking around because you never know what you’ll find.
The Dingle Pub
Serving as a bar, restaurant and bed and breakfast, The Dingle Pub is home to live music and when we were there, Irish dancing from an award-winning dancer who was also a bartender (multi-talented apparently… haha). You can find music there seven nights a week and the place will be jammed. Although I didn’t find The Dingle Pub had as much character as some of the others listed on this list, it was definitely one of the busiest and most alive when we were there. Definitely worth a stop!
An Droichead Beag
I didn’t actually make it inside of this place as it was closing right when we went to walk in. However, it definitely looked fun and tops all the lists of some of the best pubs in Dingle. This pub sits beside a bridge that leads to the road you’d take to the Conor Pass and holds live music nights every night of the year starting around 9:30-10pm.