Wondering which area to focus on when you visit Dublin and compare North Dublin vs South Dublin? I can tell you all about it!
We all know about the whole North vs South Ireland thing, but did you know Dublin itself has a quirky Northside-Southside rivalry? Yup, that’s right!
When I first got to Dublin I was, if anything, amused by it all but through my years here, I’ve come to understand the difference when you’re comparing North Dublin vs South Dublin.
So join me as I take you on a Northside-Southside journey and let’s see which one fares better!
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North Dublin Vs South Dublin: Affordability
Which is the more affordable of the two?
Well, North Dublin has always traditionally been associated with the working class, and because of this, things tend to be cheaper on this side.
From basic necessities like food and groceries to larger purchases like a house, you’ll find that the price rises once you’re on the other side of River Liffey.
The difference in prices extends to activities too, with pubs, shopping, and nightlife being more easy on the pocket.
If you want a more “budget-friendly” option between the two, stick to North Dublin. With more wallet-friendly options compared to the South, you’d be able to get more bang for your buck!
North Dublin Vs South Dublin: Beaches
If you’re a beach lover, North Dublin is the place to be.
Not to mention the beautiful Balscadden Beach, where you can take a dip in the water and watch seals just about 100 meters from the shore.
Even if you’re into more action, North Dublin’s coastline provides the perfect setup for action sports.
From kite-surfing at Dollymount Strand to wind-surfing in Portmarnock and Poolbeg, there’s no shortage of excitement in North Dublin.
However, some of these beaches, like Killiney Beach, have a mix of sand and pebbles, making them less ideal for sandy beach fun.
North Dublin Vs South Dublin: Canals
For canals, it’s a fair north-south battle. Both sides have got a grand stretch of waterway.
In the north, there’s the Royal Canal with its views of Croker and graced by the presence of Brendan Behan’s statue, whose first play “The Quare Fellow” was produced in Dublin.
The Royal Canal was originally built for freight and passenger transportation from home and work way back in the 18th century.
Over in South Dublin, there is the equally beautiful Grand Canal, built in the 19th century to connect Dublin to the Shannon.
Today, the canals are mainly used as pleasure waterways and are home to a variety of habitats, such as grasslands, hedgerows, and reed and sedge swamps.
The canal waterways are also where the Yellow Water-lily occurs.
In terms of canals, it’s definitely a draw between North Dublin and South Dublin.
North Dublin Vs South Dublin: Food
Since North Dublin is more affordable, it creates an affordable food scene with a wide range of bars, restaurants, and festivals.
Food hubs like Capel Street and Phibsborough offer quality meals at great prices.
You can also get seafood in North Dublin for almost half the price of what you’d pay in the South.
And annual events like the Dublin Bay Prawn Festival are a must-visit if you love seafood!
In South Dublin, the food scene is no less amazing.
In fact, you have a huge range of high-quality restaurants, cafes, and gastropubs, especially in areas like Ranelagh, Donnybrook, and Ballsbridge.
South Dublin has a wide range of food within different price points so that you can get anything from loud, casual spots to a refined fine dining experience.
If I were to sum it up, head to North Dublin for more budget-friendly, quality food, and go to South Dublin if you want a bigger range of food.
Photo: Viola Kovács
North Dublin Vs South Dublin: Nightlife
When you look up Dublin, you’ll definitely see the Temple Bar district, which is the focus of Dublin’s nightlife.
The Irish state actually pushed for modernization and rejuvenation as Temple Bar gained popularity and gave it a new life with a “fresh coat of paint” in 1991.
Temple Bar is now Dublin’s cultural quarter with lively nightlife and a thriving pub scene.
And where is this Temple Bar District booming with nightlife? South Dublin 🙂
Other hotspots in Dublin include the pubs on Wexford Street and nightclubs on Harcourt Street.
On the north side of River Liffey, you get a smaller, though as lively, night scene in Capel Street and O’Connell.
There isn’t much other nightlife in North Dublin to date, although Dublin Town, the city centre business improvement district, wants to rectify this disparity between south and north so it’s overall better for people who live in and travel to Dublin.
Until then, you want to be in the Southside for a good time!
Photo: Eini Trujillo
North Dublin Vs South Dublin: Parks
One of the best things about North Dublin is its many gorgeous parks.
The Northside has Europe’s largest enclosed park, the Phoneix Park.
And as if that wasn’t enough, they also have the stunning Botanic Garden, St. Anne’s Park, the list goes on.
If you love nature and just want to get lost in beautiful greens and appreciate the sights, North Dublin is where it’s at.
Not that the Southside doesn’t have any parks. There is the St. Catherine’s Park, for one. But given the number of parks that the north has, they lose out on the park battle.
Photo: George Bakos
North Dublin Vs South Dublin: Shopping
The shopping scene on both sides is interesting and varied.
Henry Street on the North Side has great shopping, but after dark, the place is pretty much dead. There isn’t much else to do on that side.
Of course, you could head to Moore Street, too.
It’s famous for the bustling, open-air market nearby. Moore Street in North Dublin is famous for its bustling open-air market, and there’s also a cool “cafe society” vibe there.
In Dublin, Southside is known for the shopping on Grafton Street. It’s got a bunch of quaint Irish boutiques mixed up with high-end stores and chain shops.
On Grafton Street, you can find almost anything!
For more authentic shopping, the Creative Quarter will take you to vintage shops and independent designers.
It really depends on what you’re searching for when you go shopping.
I think if you want more affordable stuff and a chill vibe, you’ll be happy shopping in North Dublin. And if you want more options from boutique to high-end, South Dublin is the place for you.
Photo: Nico Baum
North Dublin Vs South Dublin: Transport
The biggest win for Northsiders is that they have the airport! On the North side, you’ll just be a stone’s throw away from the airport in Swords and get other perks like avoiding the toll.
But once you’re in the city, which side’s transportation system is better?
Well, the Southside has better transportation in terms of the LUAS. The Green Line runs through many areas in the south like Dundrum, Sandyford, and Ranelagh.
In terms of LUAS, North Dublin does not have great connectivity.
But, the Northside has a better DART train service. It’s well connected to the city centre and you can easily get to and from areas in the north like Clontarf and Howth.
Both the North and South sides have a good bus system.
The bus network runs through both sides of the city and you can easily get around with it and even use it to connect you to the suburbs.
FAQs On North Dublin Vs South Dublin:
Is North Dublin Or South Dublin Better?
Wondering “is North Dublin or South Dublin better”? For real, North Dublin is better than South. Its fantastic attractions are why and there are tons of things to do in addition to the Phoenix Park, Dublin Zoo, Botanic Gardens and Malahide Castle.
Which Is Richer North Or South Dublin?
Which Is richer North Or South Dublin? The Northside was initially home to the city’s upper classes and more privileged, though it was considered poorer. Now while some of the most affluent areas in Ireland are on the north of the river like Castleknock, Clontarf, Howth and Malahide, the South side is actually richer.
What Is The Nicest Part Of Dublin?
Been wondering, “what is the nicest part of Dublin”? It’s Merrion Square. In southern, Georgian Dublin, it’s what Dublin travelers dream about. Merrion Square Park, Fitzwilliam Square, and St. Stephen’s Green are lively and lush with cobblestone streets and brick houses straight out of the 18th century.
Is North Or South Dublin Better
Is North or South Dublin better, you wonder? Well, North Dublin is better than South due to its amazing attractions like the Botanic Gardens, Phoenix Park, Dublin Zoo, and Malahide. In fact, there’s even more to add to the list!
Is Dublin 1 North Or South Dublin
Want to know Is Dublin 1 North or South Dublin? It’s in the city centre North. Dublin 1 is in the area around the Spire – the big needle on O’Connel street. The Red LUAS (tram line) serves this area.
Is North Dublin Posh
Is North Dublin posh? Well, the north was actually the more affluent side prior to the development of the Merrion Square area in Georgian Dublin. The Northside vs. Southside debate has been ongoing in Dublin for a time. Stereotypes define Southside as posh and Northside as blue collar, but it’s actually not that straightforward.
Which Is Better North Or South Dublin
Which is better, North or South Dublin? So North Dublin is better than South for the stunning Malahide Castle, Botanic Gardens, Phoenix Park and Dublin Zoo. These fantastic attractions are the biggest reasons why, and there’s more things to do where these came from!
How Is The North Side Of Dublin Different From The South Side
How is the north side of Dublin different from the south side, you wonder? Speaking of Southside, it has historically been regarded as wealthier and more privileged. It’s the part of Dublin City that’s south of River Liffey. Southside is an informal but commonly used term.
Is Dublin In Northern Or Southern Ireland
Is Dublin in Northern or Southern Ireland? The capital of Ireland is Dublin, on the eastern side of the island. Being the largest city, 2.1 million out of 5.13 million of Ireland’s population resides in Dublin.
Where Is The Roughest Area In Dublin
Where is the roughest area in Dublin? You’d want to avoid Tallaght as it’s one of the most dangerous areas in Dublin. Deliveroo drivers, who have encountered many problems in various areas in Dublin where they are being mistreated and abused by the public, have placed Tallaght under a big grey square to avoid.
The Final Showdown: North Dublin vs South Dublin
And there you have it, an exploration of the rivalry between North Dublin and South Dublin. Have you decided which side you’re on yet?
I can’t see any clear winners honestly but I can tell you this –
North Dublin is perfect when you want an authentic, grassroots experience. If you want to taste authentic Dublin, find hidden gems, and hang out where the locals are, the Northside is where you want to be.
South Dublin is more for you if you’d like a refined, polished atmosphere where a lot of the luxurious things are. From fine dining to upscale shopping, you will feel pampered in luxury on the Southside.
At the end of the day, it depends on the vibe you’re looking for. And you might not even need to pick a side – whichever side of Dublin you’re at, you’re bound for an experience of a lifetime!