To celebrate the most wonderful time of the year, there’s Christmas events happening all across Dublin this month, from carol concerts to craft markets and free festivals.
Whether you’re visiting Dublin in December or you live in the city and you’re not sure what’s happening near you this Christmas, look no further – here’s a round-up of fun events in Dublin for Christmas 2017, including a few free and family-friendly options if you’ve got kids in tow.
Christmas 2017 events in Dublin:
Elf, Light House Cinema, 16, 21 & 23 December, tickets €8.50
Christmas just isn’t the same if you don’t watch Elf at least once, right? The good folks at Light House Cinema in Smithfield are on the ball this year and screening Will Ferrell’s finest moment on the big screen. If you want more Elf-related shenanigans, there’s even an Elf Fancy Dress Karaoke night on Friday 8th December which sounds hilariously good fun. All together now…I KNOW HIM!
Moving Crib, open until 8th January, FREE
A bit of a Christmas cult classic for Dubliners, the moving crib has been delighting locals and visitors alike for the past 61 years. Located downstairs in the St Martin Apostolate Church on Parnell Square, the Moving Crib features over 100 characters depicting mostly biblical scenes, as well as a plethora of exotic animals like bears, camels and lions. Definitely one of the most unique things to do in Dublin at Christmas.
Eimear Quinn, Pavilion Theatre, 16 December 2017, tickets €23
Best known for winning the Eurovision in 1996 with her timeless song The Voice, Eimear Quinn returns to the Pavilion Theatre for a night of Christmas carols and hymns. Accompanied by a string quartet and guitar, Eimear’s haunting voice on hymns like Silent Night is just the medicine to whisk you away from the hustle and bustle of Christmas.
GLOW Smithfield, 9 December, FREE
Looking for free, family-friendly fun in Dublin this Christmas? Glow in Smithfield is hard to beat. As well as the atmospheric light displays, this festival pulls out all the stops. You can look forward to workshops with acclaimed film company Brown Bag Films, a doodling session with award-winning artist Chris Judge in the Glow Tent, a screening of The Muppet Christmas Carol, the mood-setting sounds of a gospel choir and much more.
Carols by Candlelight, National Concert Hall, 22 December, tickets from €24.75
For a truly magical night in the run-up to Christmas, Carols by Candlelight at the National Concert Hall is guaranteed to give you that fuzzy festive feeling. At this exquisite live show, Dublin Bach Singers perform carols and seasonal classics while the Mozart Festival Orchestra give you a visual feast by performing in incredible 18th-century costumes. Hearing the Christmas sequence from Handel’s Messiah in the candlelit National Concert Hall will definitely be a festive experience to remember.
Christmas Open Day at Collins Barracks, Sun, 10 December 2017, FREE
If you haven’t been to the National Museum of Ireland – Decorative Arts in a while, now is your perfect opportunity to explore this fascinating museum with the Christmas Open Day at Collins Barracks. At this free afternoon of festive fun, food historian Regina Sexton will be on hand to talk about the seasonal food we love so much, and there will be storytellers, carol singers and more. While you’re in Collins Barracks, pay a visit to the ongoing Eileen Gray exhibition to feel inspired by an amazing Irish woman and her designs.
The Snowman, Bord Gáis Energy Theatre, 16 & 17 December, tickets from €16
Don’t miss Raymond Briggs’s adored animated film The Snowman when it’s brought to life at this special screening in the Bord Gáis Energy Theatre. The classic tale of a snowman who comes to life and enchants James, a lonely only child, will be accompanied by the Irish Philharmonic Orchestra performing Howard Blake’s original score. Whether you’ve got kids to entertain or you’re a big kid yourself (raises hand), The Snowman always adds an extra splash of festive magic to Christmas.
Dublin Flea Christmas Market, 7 – 10 December, FREE
Still searching for that perfect Christmas gift or just fancy a dig around for an unexpected bargain? The last Dublin Flea Market takes place from 7 – 10 December in the Point Square, Dublin 1 and, as well as the usual selection of antiques, retro collectibles, hand crafted goods and unique Irish designs, there’ll be a fabulously festive atmosphere and plenty of Christmas gifts and grub to sample across 135 stalls.
It’s a Wonderful Life, IFI, 15 – 23 December, tickets €11
Forget Home Alone, Frank Capra’s 1946 movie It’s a Wonderful Life is my ultimate Christmas viewing pleasure and this year we can savour its brilliance on the big screen with screenings at the Irish Film Institute. If you’ve never seen it (where have you been?!), James Stewart stars as George Bailey, a rare good-natured soul who, through a cruel twist of fate, contemplates suicide. At the crucial second, he’s visited by Clarence, an angel, who allows him to see what life would be like if he’d never been born. That close-up scene of Jimmy Stewart’s face on the bridge, looking like a desperate man on the edge, makes me cry every single time. And the scene with Zuzu’s petals. So, if you attend the IFI screening of It’s a Wonderful Life, I’ll be the lady with mascara running down her face.
Are you organising or attending a cool event in Dublin at Christmas? Tell me about it in the comments or on Twitter. If you want to find out more about visiting Dublin, read my previous post about my favourite places in Dublin.