So, there isn’t one main Dublin Christmas Market – there are several!
The capital has been severely lacking when it comes to festive markets, but a few recent additions have given the city Christmassy boost.
And, while the last few years have been a bit of a mess, we can expect several Christmas Markets in Dublin in 2023!
Quick need-to-knows about the Dublin Christmas markets 2023
If you’re looking to visit Christmas Markets in Dublin in 2023, take 10 seconds to read the points below, first:
1. Don’t believe what 90% of websites are saying
So, if you Google ‘Dublin Christmas Market 2023’ you’ll find a load of websites listing off markets that no longer take place, e.g. the Dublin Flea Christmas Market or the market at the IFSC – they’re using very dated info.
2. There’s very few Bavarian-style markets
There’s hundreds of Christmas fairs taking place across Dublin in halls and car parks. Unfortunately, there’s only one (maybe two) Christmas markets in Dublin in 2023 that are even remotely Bavarian-style (e.g. the one in Dublin Castle).
3. The reality
There’s only one ‘main’ Dublin Christmas market and that’s the one in Dublin Castle. The likes of Mistletown (will 2023 finally be its year?!), the old Dun Laoghaire Christmas Market (hasn’t run in several years) and the Guinness Storehouse Christmas Market (it wasn’t a market last year) are all only ‘maybes’ at this stage.
7 Christmas markets in Dublin likely returning in 2023
Although the dates for the various Dublin Christmas markets are still TBC, we can make some educated guesses based on previous years (there are plenty of Christmas markets in Ireland going ahead, too!).
Below, you’ll find the markets that are very likely to go ahead (we’ll update this guide when we get definite dates).
1. The Dublin Castle Christmas Market: TBC
A couple of years back, the Dublin Castle Christmas market arrived out of nowhere and it went down reasonably well.
It was one of the only Christmas markets in Dublin that went ahead over the last two years and, although small, it’s set in the impressive grounds of Dublin Castle.
In previous years, the castle was finely decked out in fairy lights and the entrance to the castle grounds was lined with 100+ Christmas trees.
The main market was held within the courtyard where there was all of the usual stalls selling festive bits and bobs, a carousel and an open-air bar (more info here).
Although the dates are TBC, if this Dublin Christmas market follows the format of the last number of years, the market will run from December 8th to December 21st, 2023.
2. The Swords Castle Christmas Market: TBC
If there’s one Dublin Christmas market that’s stood strong in recent years it’s the one in Swords Castle.
Here, you’ll find over 50 stalls buckling with gifts, art, crafts, and food all sold by local traders. There’s also a Santa’s Grotto open.
If the Swords Castle Christmas market follows the format of the last number of years, it should run on November 26th and December 2nd.
3. The Howth Castle Christmas Market: TBC
Next up is one of the newest Christmas markets Dublin has to offer – the Howth Castle Christmas Market.
This was first announced in November last year, not long after it was announced that the castle had been sold.
While there was a lot of excitement about the arrival of a new Dublin Christmas market, this sounded more like an ‘add-on’ to the circus that was taking place.
The event was primarily a circus, but a festive market also took place with fairground rides.
If this ‘market’ returns, and if it follows the format from last year, it should run from December 8th to January 13th.
4. Botanic Gardens Eco Christmas Craft Market: TBC
The Botanic Gardens will likely bring back what is one of several eco-style Christmas markets in Dublin in 2023.
Here you’ll find over 70 stalls offering a range of sustainable gifts, as well as seasonal treats and decorative crafts.
It’s an indoor and outdoor market, set in and around the historic glasshouses at the Botanic Gardens in Glasnevin.
The venue will have a light sprinkling of festive cheer with performances from a local choir.
If it follows the format of last year, this Dublin Christmas market should run on the 9th and 10th of December.
5. Rathfarnham Castle Christmas Market: TBC
Rathfarnham Castle Christmas Market is an outdoor market held in, unsurprisingly enough, the grounds of Rathfarnham Castle, an impressive 16th-century fortified house.
Throughout the day, the magical market has a range of stalls selling artisan goods, local art and crafts, plus opportunities for food and festive warm drinks.
Kids will have the opportunity to post their letters to Santa and there’s also all-day entertainment taking place (it’s TBC but it should run on Saturday, December 9th).
6. The Fumbally Market: TBC
The Fumbally Market is held over several days in December (TBC), with rotating stalls featuring goods from independent artists, crafters, and traders.
It’s one of only a handful of indoor Dublin Christmas markets, which is handy if the weather isn’t playing ball!
You’ll find many a unique gift with everything from notebooks and local honey to hand-made knitwear on offer.
Don’t miss out on the Scéal Bakery’s signature Christmas puddings, minced pies, and festive preserves.
7. Bremore Castle Christmas Market: TBC
A lot of Christmas markets in Dublin are taking place in the grounds of castles this year!
The Bremore Castle Christmas Market in Balbriggan is held in the walled garden of Bremore Castle, with a range of market stalls selling a variety of arts and crafts, as well as delicious food and drinks.
It’s a wonderful opportunity to ‘support local’ with a focus on local traders, artists, and businesses. We’ll add the dates in here when we know more!
8. Christmas Markets near Dublin
If none of the Dublin Christmas markets above tickle your fancy, don’t fret – there’s a handful of markets nearby and plenty more a 2-hour drive away, depending on how dedicated you are to getting to one.
Here’s a mix of Christmas Markets near Dublin to choose from:
- Wicklow Christmas Market (1-hour drive)
- Kilkenny Christmas Market (1.5-hour drive)
- Winterval Waterford (2-hour drive)
- Glow Cork (3-hour drive)
Christmas events in Dublin in 2023
OK, there are only a few markets above, so I’ve whacked in some other festive things to do at Christmas in Dublin this year.
I’ll add more to the list below when pantos, carols, and other events are announced closer to December (find loads more things to do in the city in our guide on what to do in Dublin).
If the Christmas Markets in Dublin aren’t you’re cup of tea, you can kick-back with some live entertainment at one of the many pantos taking place.
- The Gaiety Panto: Cinderella (26th Nov – 7th Jan)
- The Helix Panto: Treasure Island (24th Nov – 14th Jan)
- The National Stadium Panto: Sammy Buffy + the Beanstalk (12th Dec – 7th Jan)
- The Civic Theatre Panto: Cinderella (6th – 31st Dec)
- The Liberty Panto: Rapunzel (18th – 31st Dec)
2. Christmas drive-in movies
Fancy watching the Santa Clause, ELF, Home Alone or Love Actually on a big aul screen from the comfort of your car?
Retro Drive-In is an outdoor cinema that takes place at Leopardstown each year, and there’s no reason it won’t be back in 2023.
If it’s lashing rain and you don’t fancy getting drenched while sauntering around a Dublin Christmas market, take refuge in your car and catch a festive flick.
3. Christmas carols
There’s an absolute tonne of different Christmas carol events you can visit in Dublin at Christmas, with a mix of free and ticketed events on offer.
The National Concert Hall has endless festive events scheduled over the coming weeks. Christ Church also has several events running. You’ll also find hundreds of other musical events listed on EventBrite.
4. The Christmas lights
Like many of Ireland’s towns and cities, Dublin is completely lit up during the festive period. However, the Christmas light switch on in Dublin has gone a*se ways over the years.
For a number of years, there was a big switch on that people travelled in to see. However, those running the event couldn’t control the crowds, and it was cancelled.
Grab a cup of coffee and take a little stroll around O’Connell Street, Henry Street, Grafton Street and just follow the lights. Finish the festive ramble off with a bite to eat in one of the best restaurants in Dublin.
5. Christmassy pubs
Dublin’s home to many a pub, but some go all out during November and December with Christmas decorations.
The Hole in the Wall pub is one of those places that you need to visit at Christmas if you haven’t nipped by already.
The folks here go all out decorating from November, and the result is incredibly special! Find loads more bars to visit in our guide to the best pubs in Dublin.
Christmas markets Dublin 2023: What have we missed?
Although I’ve spent (literally) 7 hours researching what Christmas markets Dublin may have returning to it in 2023, it’s been a pain.
Most websites are outdated and many leave providing further information until the last minute, which doesn’t help visiting tourists. Have a market to recommend? Shout below!
FAQs about Dublin at Christmas
We’ve had a lot of questions over the years asking about everything from ‘What’s the most German-like Christmas market in Dublin?’ to ‘Which are free?’.
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.