Saturday 17 March 2018

Welcome to our favourite leafy hangouts

The team choose their top Dublin parks. What's yours?

View from Killiney Credit: Stephen Traynor
View from Killiney Credit: Stephen Traynor
Louise Kelly

Louise Kelly

Our team got to thinking about alternatives to the busy beaches this morning and came up with a list of our all-time favourite Dublin parks to take some time out in. With a little help from our readers of course...


1) Bushy Park

"It’s a place steeped in childhood nostalgia for me, but that doesn’t solely explain my fondness for it. It’s a complete escape for the suburbia which surrounds it, and has managed to ward off anti-social behaviour many of the city’s parks have fallen victim to. It has a great mix of old and young, as well as play area, skate park and tennis courts." - Brian O’Reilly,

2) Killiney Hill and Park

Ciara O’Brien and Stephen Traynor, readers – “The views from the summit are absolutely amazing. I could sit up there for hours – not just for the rest after the long hike!” (COB) "You can see Bray to Dublin Bay on a summer's day." (ST)

View from Killiney Credit: Stephen Traynor

View from Killiney Credit: Stephen Traynor

3) St. Enda’s Park

“St Enda’s Park is home to the Padraig Pearse Museum, a picturesque garden and a number of pleasant walks. Next to Marlay Park, St. Endas often becomes a refuge for locals when concerts and events fill its more famous neighbour.” – Frank Whelan, 


4) Marlay Park

Caitlin McBride, – “It’s hard to pick just one, but Marlay Park is definitely a top contender for me. Besides the obvious aesthetic reasons, it’s always great for festivals and outdoor gigs. I associate it with summertime and a good time!”

Fans at the Longitude festival at Marlay Park, Dublin

Fans at the Longitude festival at Marlay Park, Dublin


1) Phoenix Park

“Phoenix Park because it's always possible to find a secluded area.” – Aoife Kelly, 

There has been a call for deer to be culled

2) St. Kevin’s Park

Geraldine Gittens,  - “I love this park on Camden Row for the silence. It feels like the walls and tombstones could crumble, and it feels like there could be spirits lurking.”


3) Merrion Square

“Merrion Square is so steeped in history which is why it is one of my favourite places to escape to in the centre of Dublin. Surrounded by beautiful Georgian houses once occupied by writers like WB Yeats and Oscar Wilde I can't help but love the idea that they too might have spent some time wandering through the cast iron gates and into the square's welcoming sunshine. I have spent so many lunchtimes, both in the crisp cold of winter and happy summer afternoons in Merrion Square, accompanied by Lolly and Cooks and a good book and it will always be the apple of my eye. I wonder if there's a bench free today?” - Trisha Murphy,

People enjoying the good weather on Merrion Square, Dublin. Photo: Gareth Chaney Collins

People enjoying the good weather on Merrion Square

4) National War Memorial Gardens

Mark McConville, - “On a bright warm evening on the way home from work, I love to take a small detour and stroll through here. A little oasis in contrast to the bustle of the Quays”



1) Malahide Park/Castle 

 “Malahide Castle is my favourite Dublin park as I grew up out in that neck of the woods and spent countless hours as a child playing football up there and exploring the castle’s grounds. As a teen, I also drank cans of cheap lager there on winter evenings with friends but the least said about that, the better.” – Garreth Murphy,

Malahide Castle

2) National Botanic Gardens/ Glasnevin Cemetery Museum

Ailish O’Hora, – “Just recently the gate between the Botanic Gardens and Glasnevin cemetery were opened. Separately they are great resources but the move shows how a bit of joined up thinking can create a much bigger space to enjoy– this time on the northside.”

National Botanic Gardens, Dublin Picture: El Keegan

National Botanic Gardens, Dublin

3) Fairview Park

"I'm a fan of Fairview. It's around a 12 minute run from my apartment and is big enough to enjoy the wooded seclusion and small enough so that it doesn't get boring. It's proximity to the gorgeous Clontarf road also helps." Jason Kennedy,

Daffodils in bloom in Fairview park, Dublin. Photo: Fran Veale

Daffodils in bloom in Fairview park, Dublin

4) St Anne’s Park

“It’s a lovely well kept park and the rose gardens are beautiful for an evening stroll in the sun.” – reader Lisa Ennis

Louise Kelly, "A perfect end to a stroll/run/cycle along the Clontarf sea front and a hop skip away from North Bull Island, St Anne's has something for kids, sportspeople, dog walkers (a lead-free time in the evening) and the florists among us. Despite the footfall, though, it's generally immaculate and a pleasure to have north of the river."

Sunset at St. Anne's Park

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