Crosskeys Inn Antrim -

Pubs are to Ireland what cheese is to Switzerland and chocolate is to Belguim – they’re a big draw for many visitors to the country. Today, pubs in Ireland come in all shapes and sizes, with old traditional pubs and modern cocktail bars providing plenty of variety across the country. One thing is for sure, as you travel around the country, you’ll rarely be stuck for somewhere to call in for a tipple or two.

If you’re planning a weekend break in Ireland and looking for some travel inspiration, then this list of old Irish pubs could be just what you need. Below we look at seven of Ireland’s oldest pubs that everyone should try to visit at least once.

7 of Ireland’s Oldest Pubs

1 Seans Bar, Westmeath

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Among the most famous pubs in Ireland, Sean’s Pub in Athlone is considered the oldest pub in Ireland, having been officially recognised by the Guinness World Records. Indeed, the bar is considered to be the oldest pub in the world, although this is a more difficult to prove. Sean’s Bar is thought to date back over 1,000 years to 900 AD. Discover the detailed history of Sean’s Bar as you relax with a beer while visiting Athlone.

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2 Brazen Head, Dublin

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The Brazen Head is another pub that lays claim to being Ireland’s oldest, and while Sean’s Bar is most likely the official oldest pub in Ireland, there’s no doubting that the Brazen Head is the oldest in Dublin. Located a short distance from two of Dublin City’s most popular tourist attractions – The Guinness Storehouse and Christchurch Cathedral – The Brazen Head has live music seven days a week. The pub has welcomed some of Ireland’s most famous faces since opening its doors in 1198, so be sure to stop by and sample a real slice of Dublin history.

View the latest deals for hotels in Dublin City Centre and remember to visit The Brazen Head on your trip.

3 Kyteler’s Inn, Kilkenny

Kytelers Inn Kilkenny -

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The oldest pub in Kilkenny, the Kyteler’s Inn was established in 1324, the original owner was a lady called Dame Alice le Kyteler. Dame Alice was accused of witchcraft and escaped to England before she could be burned at the stake. Today the pub has several areas to relax with a drink and some food, while you can enjoy music seven days a week, with Kyteler’s in particular one of the busiest pubs in Kilkenny come the weekend. A must see when visiting Kilkenny.

View the latest Kilkenny hotel deals and check out our 48-hour guide to Kilkenny and plan your next adventure today.

4 Grace Neill’s, Down

Established in 1611 and recently refurbished, Grace Neill’s is located in the County Down coastal town of Donaghadee and considered to be one of the oldest pubs in Ireland. Originally called the Kings Arms, the pub is now named after one of its previous owners, with Grace given the bar as a wedding gift from her father. The bar has welcomed all types of visitors over the years including pirates, smugglers and sailors, although today you’ll find friendly locals relaxing in the bar. The pub has a bistro area, which has earned a great reputation for food in recent times.

Plan your trip to Donaghadee and Co Down today by viewing the latest Down hotel deals.

5 JJ Bowle’s, Limerick

JJ Bowles Limerick - Irish Pubs -

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The oldest pub in Limerick, JJ Bowle’s is a popular stopping point for many visiting the city for a rugby game. Located within walking distance of Thomond Park, JJ Bowles’s is well worth visiting if you’re in Limerick when a big rugby game is on. The pub is also a short distance from King John’s Castle and Kings Island and is perfectly located on the banks of the River Shannon – perfect for relaxing outdoors if the weather is on your side.

Check out the latest deals for hotels in Limerick and plan your Limerick city break today.

6 The Old Thatch, Cork

One of the oldest pubs in Cork, The Old Thatch is located in the town of Killeagh and has been owned and run by the same family for over 300 years. The bar was renovated in the 1960s but managed to maintain its thatched roof, a roof that has now become a big feature for the continued popularity of the pub. The Old Thatch Bar is famed for its warm and homely atmosphere, while the riverside beer garden and great food menu ensure the bar attracts a crowd throughout the year.

Plan your holiday to Cork by checking out the latest Cork hotel deals. Get a taste of the area by reading our guide to Ireland’s food capital – Cork.


7 The Crosskeys Inn, Antrim

Crosskeys Inn Antrim -

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Another thatched pub, The Crosskeys Inn in Toome in County Antrim is thought to be Ireland’s oldest thatched bar. The Crosskeys Inn dates back to 1654, and today offers a variety of entertainment for visitors considering stopping by. Trad sessions are the order of the day over the weekend, with Saturday in particular attracting locals and visitors alike. A 30-minute drive from Belfast and about 5-10 km from Lough Neagh, The Crosskeys Inn is a pub you simply must stop by as you enjoy a driving holiday in Northern Ireland.

Plan your Northern Ireland adventure by checking out the latest deals on Antrim hotels.

What’s Your Favourite Irish Pub?

Discover more great pubs in Ireland to explore on your travels by visiting our Irish Pubs website, and let us know your favourite pubs in Ireland by commenting below.


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