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National Botanic Gardens

The National Botanic Gardens are located in Glasnevin, just 3 km from Dublin city centre. These beautiful gardens cover a total area of 19.5 hectares, part of which is the natural flood plain of the River Tolka. The National Botanic Gardens are an oasis of calm and beauty, and entry is free.

The poet Thomas Tickell owned a house and small estate in Glasnevin and in 1795 they were sold to the Irish Parliament and given to the Royal Dublin Society for them to establish Ireland's first botanic gardens.

The original purpose of the gardens had been to advance knowledge of plants for agriculture, medicine and dyeing. The gardens were the first location in Ireland where the infection responsible for the 1845–1847 potato famine was identified. Throughout the famine, research to stop the infection was undertaken at the gardens.

Today the gardens hold over 20,000 living plants and many millions of dried plant specimens, the gardens also contain the National Herbarium and several historic wrought iron glasshouses such as the Curvilinear Range and the Palm House which contains many tropical and subtropical plants

 The National Herbarium contains a collection of more than half a million dried and documented plant specimens from Ireland and the rest of the world. The museum collection contains some 20,000 samples of plant products, including fruits, seeds, wood, fibres, plant extracts and artefacts, collected over the garden's two-hundred-year history. The gardens contain noted and historically important collections of orchids.

The gardens display a range of outdoor "habitats" such as a rockery, herbaceous border, rose garden, bog garden, arboretum, sensory garden, rock garden and burren area, large pond, extensive herbaceous borders, and annual display of decorative plants including a rare example of Victorian carpet bedding. A vegetable garden has also been established.


The new Education & Visitor Centre, opened in 2000, includes a cafe and a large lecture hall. It is fully accessible for people with disabilities.


Opening Times:

Every day except Christmas Day

Summer Opening Hours:

Mar - Oct:

Mon - Fri: 09.00 - 17.00

Sat & Sun: 10.00 - 18.00


Winter Opening Hours:

Nov - Feb:

Mon - Fri: 09.00 - 16.30

Sat & Sun: 10.00 - 16.30



General access is free but there is a €2 charge for parking.

Guided tours cost €2 per person - available by prior arrangement.

Free guided tours: Sunday at 2.30pm


The best way to get to the Botanic Gardens from the Castle Hotel is to take the  19, (19A) bus from O'Connell St and this will leave you right outside.


The National Botanic Gardens,
158 Botanic Rd,
Dublin 9.