Ireland 2019: Dublin’s Temple Bar

Temple Bar is a bar. It’s also a street. And a square. And a neighborhood. It’s the heart of Dublin’s night life and where tourists flock for food and drink and song. On our first day in Dublin we decided to take a walk along the north Liffey quays and then cross the Liffey via the Ha’penny Bridge to check out this neighborhood.

View of the River Liffey from the middle of the Ha’penny Bridge

Click on any photo to see a larger version of that photo.

That’s the O’Connell Bridge in the near foreground. The domed building under the sea gull is the Custom House.

Ha’penny Bridge.

The Ha’penny Bridge was built in 1816 and has had many names over the years. It was originally called The Wellington Bridge and since 1922 it’s official name is The Liffey Bridge. There no longer is a toll but Dubliners prefer to still call it the Ha’penny bridge.

The Temple Bar district starts on Wellington Quay on the south end of the Ha’penny Bridge.

Temple Bar Square.

The main entrance to the Bad Ass Cafe is around the corner on Crown Alley. GBK is known for their gourmet burgers.

The Temple Bar Trading Company next to The Temple Bar.

The Temple Bar Trading Company is a souvenir store.

The Temple Bar.

Martha Temple, wife of Sir William.

Sir William Temple was secretary to the Earl of Essex who came to Dublin in 1599. William built his house in the early 1600s on the spot where The Temple Bar is now located. One story of how Temple Bar got its name is that it is named after Sir William. But there’s another story that sounds more probable. There’s an area near St Paul’s Cathedral in London that is also known as Temple Bar. The two major streets in this portion of London are Essex and Fleet Streets. Two of the major streets in Dublin’s Temple Bar also have these names. When medieval cities expanded beyond their walls tollgates called “bars” were installed at certain distances on major thoroughfares outside the walls.  The gate outside London’s western wall was near buildings owned by the Knights Templar.

One more view of The Temple Bar.

We had lunch one day in 2002 at The Temple Bar with our cousins Henry and Geraldine. But this time we just walked by. The place is always crowded and loud and is known to be a tourist trap. Food and drinks are very expensive.

Cloud Nine Gelato on Temple Bar (the street) across from Temple Bar (the bar).

Milano Restaurant on Eustace Street.

Costa Coffee on Eustace Street.

The Ark on Eustace Street.

The Ark is an organization for kids — art, theatre, music.

Dame Street and South St George’s Street.

Dame Street marks the southern border of the Temple Bar neighborhood.

Rebirth of Cool is a clothing store on Temple Lane.

Temple Lane is parallel to and one block east of Eustace Street.  After walking down Eustace Street to Dame we then walked back north on Temple Lane.

Street art on Temple Lane.

Sign outside the Crowbar on Temple Lane.

Portion of Dublin’s Rock n’ Roll Wall of Fame on Temple Lane at Cecilia Street.

The wall belongs to the Irish Rock ‘n Roll Museum Experience. That’s Luke Kelly on center left and Sinead O’Connor on upper right.

We then turned right on Cecilia Street and walked past Crow Street.

The archbishop of Crow Street.

I processed this photo in Lightroom and when I straightened it up the archbishop drinking coffee in the lower left disappeared. So I immediately unstraightened it since the archbishop is the most interesting part of the photo!

La Caverna and Lucy’s Lounge on Fownes Street Lower.

Cecilia Street ends at Fownes Street Lower. We walked up a block on Fownes Street Lower to get back to Temple Bar Square.

Quay’s Restaurant on Temple Bar Square across from Bad Ass and GBK.

Looking back at Quay’s on Temple Bar Square.

The Auld Dubliner on Fleet Street (Temple Bar becomes Fleet Street at Asdill’s Row).

Two of the most famous Irish restaurants on Fleet Street are The Auld Dubliner and Oliver St John Gogarty’s.

Oliver St John Gogarty’s on Fleet Street.

Remember Dunguaire Castle in Galway? We visited the place on our Cliffs of Moher tour the week before we got to Dublin (see here). Oliver St John Gogarty was a surgeon, poet and playwright who came from Connemara north of Galway but purchased his south Galway castle to use as a literary retreat for himself and his friends W. B. Yeats, George Bernard Shaw and Lady Augusta. I don’t think he had anything to do with the bar named after him. We returned to Gogarty’s on our last night in Dublin to hear some traditional Irish music while dining.

Bedford Lane from Fleet Street (near Auld Dubliner and Gogarty’s).

We walked along Fleet Street until we got to Westmoreland.

The Banking Hall on Westmoreland Street. It was built in 1868 and is now part of the Westin Dublin and is a popular wedding venue.

Westmoreland Street marks the eastern border of the Temple Bar neighborhood. We walked up Westmoreland to the O’Connell Bridge which we crossed to get to the north side of the River Liffey and back to our hotel.

Superman on Westmoreland. Batman is around the corner of the Lafayette Building which houses the Pillar Bar and the National Wax Museum..

Superman and Batman guard the south end of O’Connell Bridge. Daniel O’Connell watches over the north side of the bridge.

The O’Connell Monument at the foot of O’Connell Street, Dublin’s main street.

We’ll see more of O’Connell Street and its monuments in my next posting.

Irish Music BonusIn the Rare Ould Times — Ronnie Drew and The Dubliners

Pete St John is an Irish singer / songwriter most famous for penning the song Fields of Athenry. He also wrote In the Rare Ould Times (sometimes called Dublin City in the Rare Old Times). The Dublin City Ramblers first recorded the song and Danny Doyle’s version reached the top of the charts in 1978. The song is about Dublin in the ’60s ruining the old Dublin the narrator remembers. There are probably many people in 2020 who would rather be back in the Dublin of the 60s! Let’s listen to Ronny Drew and the Dubliners reminisce about the rare ould times: Be sure to view the last minute where you will see Ronny walking across the Ha’Penny Bridge and then singing along with a Dublin woman selling her foods at a market.

About crowcanyonjournal

I am a family man with interests in family history, photography, history and travel.
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7 Responses to Ireland 2019: Dublin’s Temple Bar

  1. Peter Klopp says:

    This has been a very interesting tour through the streets of Dublin. I liked the flow chart on the sign outside the Crowbar, which seems to say: whatever your situation you will enjoy a drink in the Crowbar. Best wishes and stay safe. Peter

  2. mvschulze says:

    Thanks for the tour. Nice! It’s also nice to see so much genial normalcy in this current time of social distancing. M 🙂

  3. disperser says:

    Weird . . . some of this looked familiar. Did you do a previous post on your 2002 visit?

    Or, maybe some other blog I follow had something about this.

    I mean, most of this was new to me, but some seemed familiar.

    Anyway, nice tour . . . but it’s a bar; I don’t go to bars.

    • disperser says:

      Yeah, I noticed the crowds . . . another reason I’d avoid.

      I looked at those other posts, but I don’t think I’d seen them before. I’m wondering if one of the other blogs I follow had something on this street.

  4. Hey, they are not all bars. That’s a gelato store in photo # 9!
    I don’t remember doing any posts on our 2002 visit to Dublin but I did a couple on our 2009 trip.

    Btw, did you notice all the people in these photos?

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