Christmas is coming to Dublin – but while spectacular festive lights glitter across the city, some revellers are exploring the darker side of the city.
Ireland would not be complete without tales of the unexpected rooted in the country’s folklore of leprechauns and other tricky entities.
To prove the point, the National Leprechaun Museum is putting on an anti-Christmas celebration of ancient myth and legend linked to the ancient festival of Samhain.
The festival is like Halloween and marks the end of the harvest and the onset of winter.
That’s the sweeter side of the festival. Flip the coin and Samhain is also the pagan Festival of the Dead. A time when the spirits of those that have passed on mingle with the living.
The lighter side of Christmas
The festival runs until December 28 at the museum, on Jervis Street, starting at 7 pm nightly. Tickets are 18 euros and the show may not be suitable for children.
If you prefer shiny things, then pop to the Creative Quarter for the House of Lights from 6.30 pm to 8 pm at the Powerscourt Townhouse Centre on William Street.
The show is free and besides lights and shopping, expect to enjoy a performance from the cast of The Wizard of Oz, the Lucan Gospel Choir or the Rhythm Masters.
If you are still shopping for unusual Christmas gifts for the difficult to please, then stop in at the Dublin Christmas Flea Market.
Featuring nearly 300 stalls displaying arts, crafts, antiques and bric-a-brac, you are sure to find that unusual or quirky present that ticks the box for the most demanding loved one.
The bus that stole Christmas
Even if you are not shopping drop in to taste artisan foods and join the Christmas celebrations with some live music.
The festival is open from December 6 to December 9 and December 13 to December 16. The times are 1pm to 8pm Thursdays and Fridays or 11am to 6pm Saturdays and Sundays.
The market is at Point Village, off Sraid an Mheara Uachtarach.
Make a day of it by teaming the market with a 45 minute trip on the bus that stole Christmas– a fun storytelling adventure for children that runs from 1pm on the hour until 6pm from outside Flanagan’s Restaurant on Upper O’Connell Street.
For 15 euros, you can take part in some seasonal mayhem as part of a pantomime.