Best Shopping in Dublin

Dublin's City Centre Offers Famous Department Stores, Boutiques and Markets

Whether it's the old school glamour of renowned fancy department stores that you crave, or the kitsch nature of open air markets and book stalls there is always something within walking distance in Dublin's city centre. The two main shopping districts in Dublin are located either side of the Liffey and have a wealth of high street shopping interspersed with expansive department stores and open air markets. The only suburban shopping centre on this list - the Dundrum Shopping Centre - is a mere fifteen minute ride on the Luas tram line and offers an alternative to the hustle and bustle of the centre of the city with plenty of amenities for families with young children. If you want to intersperse your shopping with a look at some of the city's landmarks then taking a stroll down Grafton Street and popping into the Powerscourt Townhouse Centre, or stop by The Spire that overlooks Henry Street to get in your quota of sightseeing before hitting the shops. Those looking to peruse something different should try the weekend markets in Temple Bar or the Moore Street fruit and veg market to get a slice of authentic Dublin and perhaps some food to accompany it. 


Southside suburbs

The Dundrum Shopping Centre has become the prime suburban shopping centre in the county and features a broad range of shops and restaurants to keep you occupied for the entire day. House of Fraser and Harvey Nichols provide the high end department store products, while boutiques, sports supply shops and baby oriented stores mean that everyone is catered for under one roof. The center itself is bright and airy and with the Mill Theatre nearby as well as a mini-golf park and a cinema there is plenty to occupy both adults and children with well into the evening.

Local Expert tip: Parking on the above ground carpark is more expensive than the lower levels, if you spend over �30 in the Tesco Supermarket however, your parking will be validated.

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Henry Street is the main hub of north-of-the-Liffey shopping and is a concentrated street of shopping malls, high street stores and Arnotts, Dublin's oldest and largest department store that evokes commercial past and present within its walls. Located adjacent to the Spire, Henry Street is often awash with stalls selling hats and handbags and sometime you will find women pushing old-style prams filled with fresh cherries. Just behind Arnott's on Middle Abbey Street you will find the Epicurean Food Hall that offers wide range of foreign cuisines to sample.

Local Expert tip: Coming up to Christmas expect to see a vibrant market with some very vocal sellers shouting in the Dublin vernacular.

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Moore Street is a Dublin landmark, famous for its open air fruit and vegetable market which is Dublin's oldest food market. Open Monday to Saturday it features dozens of stalls with fresh fruit and veg at competitive prices and always featuring the signature Dublin banter that the locals have come to expect. The street also features some ethnic shops catering for the various international communities with African and Asian shops sitting behind the main market area. Expect to drive a hard bargain and pick up a broad range of delights from this street.

Local Expert tip: Some of the fruit and veg can be so fresh you should probably consume it that day, be aware.

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Clery's is a long-established department store on the famous O'Connell Street which dates from the mid 19th century. The large clock with two faces that hangs outside Clery's doors has long been recognised as a popular 'rendez-vous' spot for both Dubliners and people from the country alike. Clery's has a mix of upmarket fare with more affordable products. The Warehouse section of the store offers affordable, glamourous evening and occasion wear and there is also an in-house nail bar if you want to treat yourself to a manicure on the go.

Local Expert tip: Clery's has a good mix of Irish designers with regular high street and upmarket brands.

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The tourist hub of Temple Bar is also home to three different markets over the weekend that provides something different and interesting for consumers. Saturdays include the Temple Bar food market in Meeting House Square with a wide range of stalls from cheese to seafood to freshly baked goods. Meanwhile, at Cow's Lane, the Designer Mart showcases the very best in Irish handmade craft and design with 20 different stalls. The Temple Bar Book Market is on both Saturday and Sunday in Temple Bar Square and offers vintage books and vinyl for literature and music lovers alike.

Local Expert tip: These markets are a must see and the food market in particular offers produce that you may not find elsewhere in the city at affordable prices.

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Enter this treasure trove of vintage fare to find something that stands out from the crowd. The Harlequin is a mother and daughter run vintage and Repo boutique that has everything from casual wear to accessories to occasion and evening wear under one roof. The rails are packed to the hilt with every type of vintage garb you can imagine and many swear that it is the best vintage shop in the city. Many shoppers swear by the bag selection in particular which includes many unique, leather items.

Local Expert tip: While this shop is vintage it is at the higher end of the price spectrum and you can expect to see prices start from around the �25 mark.

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George's Street Arcade offers an eclectic mix of boutique and vintage clothes shops at affordable prices, food markets and quirky collectible stalls along with little caf�s and a record shop. Shops and vendors here tend to come and go although the general atmosphere and vibe stays the same - it's random, diverse and cool and you will find things here that you might not find anywhere else. Originally purpose built in 1881 as a Victorian Shopping Centre it has undergone reconstruction and changes of hands but has always maintained its own unique atmosphere.

Local Expert tip: The Gallery here has a series of lovely photographs and prints on sale which are completely unique.

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The Powerscourt Townhouse Centre is a high-end boutique shopping centre located inside a magnificent Georgian townhouse that once belonged to the Powerscourt family. Managing to avoid being lost to drab reconstruction, the townhouse now offers a range of upmarket retail and design outlets in an airy, spacious interior. Peruse fashion, jewelry and antique vendors before settling down for lunch in some of the fabulous cafés. If you fancy pampering yourself there are also hair salons and make-up and beauty salons to treat yourself in.

Local Expert tip: Have lunch at The Pepper Pot café and watch the world go by.

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Brown Thomas is synonymous with luxury shopping in Dublin and this department store offers the Irish version of Selfridges; an upmarket mix of prêt-à-porter and haute couture clothing, accessories and cosmetics. The sister shop, BT2 is located on the opposite side of Grafton Street and caters to a younger, more mass market clientele. Celebrity chefs Domini and Peaches Kemp are at the helm of Brown Thomas' exclusive 'The Restaurant' which is the perfect pitstop after a busy day of shopping for a drink or a bite to eat.

Local Expert tip: Check the sale dates for Brown Thomas and BT2 to get designer items at affordable prices.

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Grafton Street is the epicenter of Dublin shopping and has everything from high-end boutique shops to regular high street fare. The St. Stephen's Green shopping centre marks the top of Grafton Street with an eclectic mix of shops inside meanwhile the street itself is often littered with buskers and street performers vying for shopper's attention. The famous statue of Molly Malone marks Grafton Street's end and is often accompanied by a friendly leprechaun. Take in a rooftop view of the city on the top floor Marks and Spencer's caf� or admire the flower stalls set out along the street.

Local Expert tip: For budget buys try Dunnes Stores both on Grafton Street and in The Stephen's Green Centre.

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Meet Emily Carson

Emily grew up in Dublin, and studied French and English Literature at the University of Edinburgh. During her university years, she lived in both Scotland and France, but traveled around Europe...  More About Emily