Welcome to Pat Liddy’s Walking Tours of Dublin!
Who is Pat Liddy?
Pat Liddy is a well-known Dublin historian, author and artist who has developed a unique walking tour service for Dublin. Covering the inner city and, by advance request, the coastal villages, waterways, hills and intriguing suburbs, the tours are compiled by Pat Liddy himself based on his years of experience, historical research and the collection of anecdotal and legendary stories of Ireland’s Capital City :
“All my life I have been an enthusiast of Dublin and now I would love to share with you the stories, the architecture, the history, the winding back streets, the beautiful parks, the hidden gems, the peals of medieval bells and so much more in this unique city”.
Who are the Tour Guides?
All tour guides are enthusiasts of Dublin and, although many already hold state qualifications in tour guiding, they have all been trained personally by Pat Liddy and his team of specialists.
The guides will captivate the listener with vivid, engaging and often amusing stories of Dublin city, both in its old and in its new guises and are guaranteed to make your tour a memorable experience.
Several of the guides fluently speak the main European languages so, with sufficient notice, it may be possible to provide a guide for pre-booked group tours in your own language. We are also in the process of seeking guides with proficiency in Japanese and Mandarin so if you require these languages please let us know.
Check out the following tours:
Departure: Tourist Office, Suffolk Street and Tourist Office, O’Connell Street
Daily at: 10.00am, Noon, & 2pm
Price: 1¼ Hour – €5
This tour is perfect for those of you making your first visit to Dublin or with only a little time to spare and you want to get a sense of the city. Many of the visitor sites and other places to see in Dublin will be pointed out or explained by the guide.
The walk brings participants past the celebrated Molly Malone statue and on through the main shopping streets of the historic Georgian and Victorian quarters of the Grafton Street area before arriving to Dawson Street. Here you will see the elegant Mansion House, the home of Dublin’s Lord Mayor for 300 years, the Royal Irish Academy, a scientific and cultural institution since the 1700s, and St Ann’s Church with its lovely 18th century galleried interior and rich and quaint historic connections.
We will then walk through a couple of the squares of Trinity College before passing by the classically proportioned Bank of Ireland, the former 18th century House of Parliament. Then through Temple Bar, Dublin’s equivalent to Paris’s Left Bank before crossing the famous Ha’penny Bridge over the River Liffey to bring you to Dublin’s main street and one of the widest boulevards in Europe, O’Connell Street. Around here you will find intriguing monuments including the magnificent O’Connell Monument commemorating Daniel O’Connell. He was known as the Liberator because he achieved emancipation for Roman Catholics in Ireland and Britain.
Passing along the street and noticing other points of interest along the way you will reach the General Post Office, the headquarters of the 1916 Rebellion and the de facto main shrine to Irish Independence. This will leave you near Henry Street, Dublin’s busiest shopping street and also close to all public transport and only 500m from where the tour started. Along this tour and at the finish you will have opportunities to ask your guide about any information you may require to help you enjoy and make the most of your visit to Dublin.
Mummies, Spirits & Hidden City
Departure: Tourist Office, Suffolk Street | Finish at the Old Jameson Whiskey Distillery. Adjacent to the Red Tram Line
Monday 10.00am, Wednesday 10.00am & Friday 10.00am
Price: 2 Hours – €12/10€ includes admission to Mummies
This tour will bring you to places the visitor to Dublin rarely sees. The early part of the tour goes through the east end of the buzzing yet historic Temple Bar district, the 17th and 18th century docklands area and now Dublin’s Left Bank and cultural quarter.
The walk will then take you over the famous Ha’penny Bridge and along the gracious boardwalk to enjoy the tidal waters of the River Liffey, where the Norse longboats sailed up over 1,000 years ago to capture the early Christian village of Dublin. They went on to build what was to become one of the most important trading towns in the Viking world.
Upon arriving into what is known as the Italian Quarter on account of the number of Italian cafes there, a surprise awaits in the form of an extraordinary contemporary wall-mounted depiction based on Leonardo da Vinci’s Last Supper. After passing a remarkable transformation from a church to a café-bar you will next arrive to an underground vestige of the Middle Ages, the Chapter House of St Mary’s Abbey.
After a brief stopover here the tour will continue on through the Victorian Fruit & Vegetable Market building and then continue past Ormond Square, a little townhouse oasis, before walking past the massive Georgian pile of the Four Courts, site of the country’s highest courts of law and forever associated with the start of Ireland’s Civil War in 1922. We then make the fantastic visit to St Michan’s Church, first founded by the Vikings around 1030 and for 600 years the only parish church on the north side of the city. In the crypt of the church you will ‘enjoy’ the macabre experience of seeing mummified remains of centuries-old burials and their individual stories The tour ends at the Old Jameson Whiskey Distillery.
Viking & Medieval Dublin
Departure: Tourist Office, Suffolk Street | Finish at St Audoen’s Church Visitor Centre, High Street or continue on to Guinness Storehouse.
Tuesday 10.00am, Thursday 10.00am, Saturday 10.00am & Sunday 10.00am.
Price: 2 Hours – €10/€8
This enchanting walk, starting from the Tourist Office, once the site of the old Viking parliament, will bring you through some narrow laneways until you reach an historic charitable building before visiting the courtyards of the historic Dublin Castle. Mostly an 18th century complex, we will discover the last remaining medieval tower.
Then a quick visit into the Georgian splendour of City Hall before crossing into west end of Temple Bar, the site of the very origins of Dublin. You will now explore hidden streets and passageways where you will discover interesting period buildings and the more modern city rubbing shoulders with the ruins of medieval towers, walls and gates and the mementoes of vast archaeological discoveries. An underground medieval tower reveals an intriguing connection with a Wagnerian opera! Stand close to the River Liffey where the Norse longboats sailed up over 1,000 years ago to capture the early Christian village of Dublin.
They went on to build what was to become one of the most important trading towns in the Viking world. Follow in George Frederick Handel’s footsteps and see the site where his Messiah was first performed under the shadow of the ancient Christ Church Cathedral. Find out why Dublin has two cathedrals of the same faith and why the tower of Christ Church Cathedral contains a world record. Enjoy the opportunity, after our walk, to visit Dublinia, the Viking & Medieval museum or the magnificent interior of Christ Church Cathedral with its atmospheric crypt containing cathedral treasures and historic artefacts.
The walk will then bring you to a stretch of Viking/Norman city wall still standing in splendid isolation on a street tourists rarely see. Enter the ancient gateway and pass up steps by the ancient St Audoen’s Church founded by the Normans in 1190, now the city’s oldest parish church and still in continuous use. We will end the tour at St Audoen’s which has a free-admission visitor centre. In the area there are many cafes and traditional bars to await you including the Brazen Head, Ireland’s oldest pub. You are also close to the Guinness Storehouse, This tour is an evocative journey into a past that stretches beyond two millennia.
Castle & Cathedral
Departure:Tourist Office, Suffolk Street | Finish at St Patrick’s Cathedral
Monday 2.30 pm, Wednesday 2.30pm & Sunday 2.30pm
Price: 2 Hours – 12€/10€ includes admission Cathedral
The courtyards and gardens of Dublin Castle reveal their own treasures and surprises including medieval towers, a section of city wall and one of the most outstanding museums in the world, the Chester Beatty Library Galleries.
Moving on through an historic former 17th/18th century Huguenot area you will wander past a modern apartment building which uniquely features scenes from Gulliver’s Travels, that great work penned by the one-time Dean of St Patrick’s, Jonathan Swift. A lovely park, laid out and paid for by the famous Guinness family, will afford a magnificent panoramic view and great photo opportunity of St Patrick’s Cathedral. It was founded by a Norman archbishop in the 12th century at the very site where St Patrick is reputed to have baptised the people of the area in the 5th century. In the park there is also a showpiece called the Literary Parade which highlights the pantheon of famous Dublin writers, from Oscar Wilde to George Bernard Shaw to James Joyce. Find out how the world-famous brewery of Guinness helped to lift this area from depressing slums into a reinvigorated community relocated into quality housing.
The walk will then take you around the neighbours of St Patrick’s including the deanery, a police station housed in a one-time medieval archbishop’s palace and, subject to it being open, we will visit Marsh’s Library, Ireland’s first public library (and believed to be haunted!). The walk concludes inside St Patrick’s Cathedral.
Trinity College & 18th Century Dublin
Departure:Tourist Office, Suffolk Street | Finish at the Merrion Hotel, Merrion Street, near St Stephen’s Green and Merrion Square
Tuesday 2.30pm, Thursday 2.30pm, Friday 2.30pm & Saturday 2.30pm
Price: 2 Hours – €10.00/€8.00
The first stop will be in the leafy early 19th century cul-de-sac of Foster Place to stand in front of the elegant former armoury of the Bank of Ireland which was erected when this institution took over the premises of the defunct Irish Parliament in 1803.
The next stop will bring you into the courtyard of the remarkable old Parliament House (1729), the first building in the world to be erected for a two-house legislature. An internal visit follows to the House of Lords, probably the world’s oldest parliament room in its original condition (dating from 1733).
After picking out some curiosities on College Green you will then enter the hallowed gateway of Trinity College and pass through its elegant 18th and 19th century courtyards and greens and hear some of the fascinating history as well as an occasional the tall tale associated with the university. Hear about the early origins of the university and admire the Old Library building, now believed to be the largest single library chamber in the world (internal visits to the Old Library and the famous Book of Kells may be made independently after the walk). Cricket and rugby pitches and hideaway gardens are still as much part of the tradition as are the impressive teaching and residential blocks.
Upon leaving the campus a stroll through the halls of the National Gallery of Ireland will bring you out, rather unexpectedly, into a district of splendid Georgian squares, long elegant terraces, tranquil parks and magnificent government institutions. The beautiful Merrion Square Park (Archbishop Ryan Park) will reveal many surprises not least the remarkable statue to Oscar Wilde and the Irish Military Memorial. See the Dáil (the Irish Parliament building, a former aristocrat’s mansion) and then, on the opposite side of the street, the birthplace of the Duke of Wellington, the victor of Napoleon at Waterloo, before standing before the last magnificent public building erected by the British before their final withdrawal in 1922.
Finally, the tour will bring you down into the atmospheric cellars of the Duke’s old house to the Cellar Bar of the 5 star Merrion Hotel where you can then choose to raise a glass of wine or partake in a repast. This location is only a stone’s throw from the shops and cafes of the Grafton Street area.