The very popular Bushy Park in Terenure is one of our favourite parks in Dublin.
Boasting 51 beautiful acres, the park dates way back to 1700 and it’s a fine place for an early morning ramble.
The park is home to numerous trails to tackle, a lively Saturday market (from 10-16:00) and 11 tennis courts.
Below, you’ll find everything from where to get parking at Bushy Park and when it opens to what to do when you arrive.
Some quick need-to-knows about Bushy Park in Terenure
Although a visit to Bushy Park in Terenure is fairly straightforward, there are a few need-to-knows that’ll make your visit that bit more enjoyable.
Stretching across 51 acres, Bushy Park is located in the south Dublin suburb of Terenure. The park has several entrances, with most of the found on Rathdown Avenue. It’s around a 15-20 minute drive from the centre of Dublin, while the 15 and 54A buses will take you straight there from Dame Street.
2. Opening hours
Bushy Park opens every day from 10:00, though its closing time depends on the month. Closing times are as follows:
- January: 17:00
- February: 17:30
- March: 18:30 before clocks go forward, 19:30 after clocks go forward
- April: 20:30
- May: 21:30
- June and July: 22:00
- August: 21:30
- September: 20:30
- October: 19:30 before clocks go back,18:30 after clocks go back
- November: 17:30
- December: 17:00
There are some parking spaces available on Rathdown Avenue (around here on Google Maps) and they would be the handiest. However, they can fill up fast on good days, especially at the weekend.
4. Dates back to 1700
This particular part of Dublin’s green space dates back to 1700, when Arthur Bushe, Secretary to the Revenue Commissioners, built the house known as “Bushes House”. That property was obtained by John Hobson in 1772, after which he changed the name to Bushy Park and remains to this day.
The playground at Bushy Park is a great spot to bring the kids and it’s located on the west side of the park, not far from the bandstand and duck pond. With climbing structures, slides and swings and a ton of other fun things, there’s plenty here to keep the children occupied and there’s even a zipline for the older kids!
About Bushy Park in Dublin
As we’ve mentioned, John Hobson changed the name to Bushy Park back in 1772, though it’s not actually clear if Arthur Bushe was the reason he did that. Coming in at a massive 1,000 acres, it’s possible he might have simply named it after the prominent Bushy Park in the London Borough of Richmond upon Thames.
But despite its size, there’s still plenty to do in this lovely south Dublin park. If you’re coming down for a ramble with the family, then you’ll be able to enjoy a children’s playground, an extensive wooded area, walks to the banks of the River Dodder, a woodland pond, a duck pond, and a recently-reopened kiosk.
There’s also a ton of things to do if you want to get active down at Bushy Park. With a GAA pitch, a soccer pitch, a skate park and 11 tennis courts, you won’t be short of options to burn a few calories! You can even play Boules if you like (though I can’t guarantee calories will be burnt during that particular ‘sport’…)
Things to see and do at Bushy Park
If you’re looking for day trips from Dublin City, Bushy Park is a great shout, as it’s 1, home to plenty to see and do and 2, it’s close to loads more attractions (more on this in a moment).
Here’s a handful of things to do at Bushy Park in Terenure. If you can, try and angle your visit around the market.
1. Head for a ramble
Rambles don’t come much more relaxing than that of a meander through the beautiful woodlands and open spaces of Bushy Park. There’s no particular set route though, so take a stroll in any direction – the only rule (well, my rule!) is to enjoy the park’s most scenic sections.
Basically, by that I mean enjoying the leafy stroll along the River Dodder and the Duck Pond, then heading past the colourful Bandstand and through the charming woodlands by Bushy Park Lake. Enjoy the tranquility and the many many dogs you’ll pass by on the way (never a bad thing!).
2. Bushy Park Market
Open to the public every Saturday from 10am until 4pm, Bushy Park Market is one of Dublin’s coolest (and most scenic) outdoor markets. There’s loads of great food on offer to perk up your weekend so don’t hold back on getting stuck in!
Churros, burgers, donuts and gourmet grilled sandwiches are just some of the kinds of food you might be able to enjoy should you make the journey down to Terenure (although don’t hold us to those in particular – they’re just examples of what you could find!).
It does get busy, however, so perhaps try to arrive a little earlier if you want a parking spot (or just jump on a bus).
Did I mention there were 11 tennis courts?! You might not turn into the next Roger Federer here, but you’ll have a good time and, with that amount of choice, almost certainly get a game. And don’t worry if you haven’t got a partner either – Club Bushy Park’s innovative PLAY! system will find one for you.
There’s also a choice of artificial grass and clay court too, if you want to try out some different surfaces. It’s €6.00 per hour on the green courts while the clay ones will set you back €6.00 per hour.
Things to do near Bushy Park
One of the reasons that a visit to Bushy Park in Terenure is so popular is due to its proximity to many of the best places to visit in Dublin.
Below, you’ll find a handful of things to see and do a stone’s throw from Bushy Park (plus places to eat and where to grab a post-adventure pint!).
1. Tymon Park (10-minute drive)
Yes, it might be near a motorway but Tymon Park is a nice spot and boasts over 300 acres of lush green space. Located between Ballymount and Tallaght and a 10-minute drive west of Bushy Park, it’s one of Dublin’s best parks for recreational activities so if a gentle ramble isn’t enough to keep your energy levels from petering out then there’s loads of other stuff you can try here.
2. Kilmainham Gaol (20-minute drive)
Infamous for being the site of incarceration for many Nationalist leaders, Kilmainham Gaol has played a hugely significant and symbolic part in Irish history and the prison is well worth a visit. Around a 20-minute drive north from Bushy Park, former inmates include Charles Stewart Parnell, Patrick Pearse and Eamon de Valera.
3. Ticknock Forest (20-minute drive)
Full of beautiful green forest and unique rock formations, the Ticknock walk is arguably one of the best walks in Dublin. Just a 20-minute drive from Bushy Park, the trail takes in forests of Japanese Larch, Sitka Spruce and Lodgepole Pine, as well as the weird and wonderful Fairy Castle Ruins.
4. Marlay Park (15-minute drive)
While it’s now largely famous for hosting the huge Longitude music festival every year since 2013, Marlay Park is actually a lovely spot to come for a ramble the other 362 days of the year! A 15-minute drive south, there’s also a nine-hole golf course, tennis courts, six soccer pitches, five GAA pitches, a cricket pitch, a dog park, two children’s playgrounds and a miniature railway.
FAQs about Bushy Park
We’ve had a lot of questions over the years asking about everything from ‘How big is Bushy Park in Dublin?’ to ‘Where do you get parking at Bushy Park?’.
In the section below, we’ve popped in the most FAQs that we’ve received. If you have a question that we haven’t tackled, ask away in the comments section below.
Is there parking at Bushy Park Dublin?
There’s very limited parking at Bushy Park, unfortunately. There are limited spaces available on Rathdown Avenue (see link to Google Map above).
What times is Bushy Park open?
The Bushy Park opening hours vary per month (see top of guide for all hours). It tends to close at sunset throughout the year.