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10 Of The Best Snugs In Dublin: A Guide To Dublin’s Finest (And Cosiest) Snugs

10 Of The Best Snugs In Dublin: A Guide To Dublin’s Finest (And Cosiest) Snugs

It was when I was hitting ‘publish’ on a guide to 39 of the best pubs in Dublin that I remembered that we published a guide to the best snugs in Dublin many years back.

It was around Christmas time when we (myself, Dublin Snugs and a talented designer named Karen Harte) came together to create the guide below.

It was originally a guide to Christmassy pubs in Dublin that boasted snugs perfect for tucking yourself away in for an hour or four.

But, as snugs are as mighty during the warm summer evenings as they are in the depths of winter, the guide below is handy for any time of the year.

The best snugs in Dublin

pubs in dublin with snugs

Photo © Karen Harte & The Irish Road Trip

 

Snugs are (usually) small private areas in pubs that are perfect for a bit of privacy. They were introduced in Ireland towards the end of the 1800s, in an attempt to make pubs more respectable places.

Snugs served a couple of purposes – the first, was to offer privacy for those in society who wished to enjoy a drink privately (think Guards and Priests).

Another purpose was that they provided women with a place to drink away from judgmental eyes. While it wasn’t illegal for women to drink in bars, public houses were still viewed as ‘male-only’.

Below, you’ll find a clatter of Dublin pubs with snugs along with some photos of what you can expect if you manage to nab a seat.

1. Toners (Baggot Street)

toners pub dublin

Toners didn’t win Best Snug in Dublin 2010 for nothing – this traditional snug lives up to and exceeds every expectation.

It’s fully enclosed, offers private access to the bar, and is littered with old-school Irish memorabilia – what more could you want?!

2. Doheny & Nesbitts (Baggot Street)

Doheny Nesbitts pub dublin

With three snugs to choose from, the chances of grabbing a seat in a snug in Doheny & Nesbitt is pretty high.

If you can, opt for the snug that’s tucked away at the back. Boasting all of the criteria of a traditional Irish snug, you’ll need to tear yourself out of here at the end of the night.

3. Kehoe’s (South Anne Street)

keoghs snug dublin

Kehoe’s is one of the oldest pubs in Dublin and the snug here will take you back in time – expect a hatch, a bar door and an old wooden floor along with wooden panelling.

I’ve been to Kehoes a hundred times over the years and I’ve never managed to nab a seat in here. If you want to increase your chances of getting it to yourself, nip in midweek.

4. Slattery’s (Rathmines)

Slattery's pub Rathmines

The snug in Slattery’s is mighty – it’s fully enclosed and also has its own door to the bar. It’s also pretty spacious, with room for around 10 people inside.

There’s a proper old-school feel to this snug, with its worn wood and red leather seats. The perfect spot to whittle away a rainy evening.

5. Smyth’s (Ranelagh)

smyths pub ranelagh

To say this snug is in high demand would be a massive understatement! You’ll find it tucked in on the right of the front door, where it always tends to be filled with people!

If you’ve managed to cop a seat here, expect a cosy snug with decent seats that’s full of charm and character.

6. Searson’s (Baggot Street)

searsons pub dublin

You’ll be greeted by this ornate snug the minute you enter, just to left. Although this one is fully enclosed, there’s natural light spilling into it from the window.

It’s called ‘Con’s Snug’ after the famous Irish writer Con Houlihan who used to frequent this very spot during his writing days. Traditional snug lovers, look no further.

7. The Waterloo (Baggot Street)

waterloo pub dublin

There are two snugs to choose from in the Waterloo on Baggot St. (the one to the left as you go in the door is the best!)

This snug features natural light from a full pane window that makes for people-watching perfection! Although there’s no door, this snug offers a private setting whie still allowing you to be immersed in the bar’s atmosphere.

8. PMacs (Stephens Green)

pmacs pub dublin

Despite not being beside the bar, PMacs boasts a solid, modern snug section. Situated at the back left of the bar, this fully enclosed snug has a cosy granny couch and is filled with natural light from a full pane window.

I’ve heard from a few people now that the Guinness from PMacs isn’t the best, so try at your own risk or grab something else!

9. Bottlers Bank (Rathgar)

the bottlers bank dublin

This traditional Irish snug has it all – door, hatch and the creamiest Guinness in Rathgar village! This pub closed for a bit back in 2018, but it appears to be back open for good.

Bottler’s Bank is also dog-friendly, so if you’re out for a ramble with the pooch and you fancy a pint, nip in here!

10. Blackbird (Rathmines)

blackbird pub dublin

You’ll find this snug just after you saunter through the main door of this spot in the middle of Rathmines. The snug here is fully enclosed and has faded windows along with ample space.

Although this snug would be a great setting for an evening with friends, the lads at Dublin Snugs say the privacy and romantic lighting make it the ideal date spot.

What Dublin snugs have we missed?

The guide above was written several years ago, and it’s in need of a good update. It’s missing bowes, the Gravediggers and the Palace, and plenty more, I’m sure.

If you know of any pubs with snugs in Dublin that you’d like to recommend, shout away in the comments below.

FAQs about the best snugs in Dublin

We’ve had a lot of questions over the years asking about everything from ‘Which are the easiest to get a seat in?’ to ‘Which are the oldest pubs with snugs in Dublin?’.

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.

What are the best pubs with snugs in Dublin?

The snugs in Slattery’s, Kehoe’s, Doheny & Nesbitts and  Toners are all well worth trying to nab (there’ll be fierce competition for a seat!).

What actually is a snug in a pub?

Snugs are (usually) small private areas in pubs that are perfect for a bit of privacy. They were introduced in Ireland towards the end of the 1800s, in an attempt to make pubs more respectable places.

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