Dear old Dublin: 40 ways to get that ‘summer-in-Dublin’ feeling

We don’t always get the sun but there’s still something special about a summer in Dublin. Here are 40 ways to switch it on

Walk under the weeping willows alongside the Grand Canal while making your way from Percy Place to see the swans in Portobello. It could bring out your inner poet.

Approach Croke Park with tickets for the Hill to watch the Dubs while the natives and those from beyond the pale bait each other in good-humoured city v country verbal combat.

Spin for mackerel on a warm evening from Dillon's Park as the setting sun drenches Dalkey Island's Martello Tower in orange light. Even more spectacular when reflected on a still sea. And even more memorable when there's a shoal of feisty mackerel about.

Get to know someone with a key for the park in Fitzwilliam Square and rackets for lawn tennis.


Go late-night skinny-dipping – bold and cold but exhilarating nonetheless. Beware of the guards and passersby bearing smartphones.

Take a Sunday saunter along Dún Laoghaire's seafront to the outdoor market at the People's Park for seafood paella in squid ink at the Food Fiesta stall. Just €6 for a classic taste of Catalan cooking.

Take a late-night horse-drawn carriage ride around Merrion and Fitzwilliam squares. Here's hoping lots of lights have been left on inside Dublin's Georgian gems so you can get a good goo at the spectacular interiors.

Watch the cricket on a Sunday afternoon near the Wellington Monument in the Phoenix Park. Perfect for a picnic.

Walk from Howth Dart station along the cliff walk until the Baily Lighthouse comes into view – talk about a spectacular sight – before heading back to the village for seafood chowder overlooking the harbour.

People-watch from under a portico in the quadrangle, Trinity College. Life's rich pagent.

Have a dip in Dublin Bay at the Forty Foot followed by a nose around Joyce's Tower. Or dive in at Dalkey's Vico Bathing Place – hidden below the railway line but highly recommended.

Rollerblade along the East Pier in Dún Laoghaire – glide along the seriously smooth surface and let yourself reminisce about more care-free days.

Watch the kite-surfers whizz about off Bull Island and enjoy the conflict as your impulsive side says give-it-a-go while your rational side says get-a-grip.

Bargain-hunt around the second-hand clothes stores between Grafton Street and South Great George's Street with a touch of café society for afters.

Get to know who is living next door at a spontaneous neighbourhood barbecue brought on by a sunny day in settled suburbia.

Stroll through the docklands as daredevil young fellas in wetsuits dive into the Liffey off the Samuel Beckett Bridge.

Have a chance encounter with a curious tourist that leads to drinks in The Stag's Head and the discovery that they're obsessed with Flann O'Brien too.

Book a post-theatre dinner in the Trocodero on Andrew Street. Take your seats to eat as the last rays of light cling to the night sky and come out after your meal a few hours later to hear the dawn chorus. Deliciously disconcerting.Take the evening sun on the boardwalk as the city's chancers and attention-seekers pass by.

Watch the smiles as the hare krishnas chant and dance their way down Henry Street on a busy Saturday afternoon.

Hear a grinning aul’one say, in her flattest Dublin accent, “I don’t mind kissin’ but I hate tha’!”

Hear a D4-type holding forth at the "bor" about having to take the "Doirt" home because "I can't, hic, remember where I porked the cor".

Watch an unexpected Samba parade down Grafton Street on Saturday afternoon – guaranteed to put everybody in a good mood and something the corpo should encourage.

Watch to see if the preachers beside the James Joyce statue on North Earl Street gain any traction with the populace and lip-read the observations of passers-by.

Wake up in a two-up two-down in Stoneybatter as a southerly breeze brings the sweet smell of the St James's Gate brewery into your bedroom.

Wander around the wonderful Iveagh Gardens – a hidden gem.

Watch the neon lights in Grand Canal Square before heading down the quays to see the Convention Centre change colour too.

Listen to the shouts of stall-holders on Moore Street as lost-looking tourists try to understand what's being said.

A-la the final scene in My Left Foot – take a bottle of champagne up to the Obelisk on Killiney Hill while watching the setting sun and raise a glass to dear old Dublin.

Can you add to this list? Leave a comment below