Kilmainham Gaol Museum
Kilmainham Gaol Museum
4.5
Speciality Museums • Historic Sites
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This bleak old jail was notorious in the 19th century for its harsh treatment of prisoners.
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Detailed Reviews: Reviews order informed by descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as cleanliness, atmosphere, general tips and location information.
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4.5
27,085 reviews
Excellent
19,455
Very good
5,915
Average
1,224
Poor
259
Terrible
234

Melissa B
Phoenix, AZ148 contributions
This was hands-down my favorite thing I did while visiting Dublin. A friend had recommend I visit the museum during my travels but unfortunately, tickets were sold out when I initially looked. On a whim, I decided to check again while I was in town and was pleasantly surprised when there were a few tickets available. Our tour guide was not only knowledgable but he was passionate about the history of Ireland which I appreciated. We all learned so much about Ireland's fight for independence and the brave men and women who helped make it happen. If you can only do one thing while visiting Ireland, go on this tour!! You won't regret it!
Written July 2, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

vegetarian-girl
Austin, TX346 contributions
Couples
This is only for the museum, not the tour. We were unable to get tix for the tour but they let us visit the museum & at no charge which was very nice, so interesting & larger than we expected.
Tickets go quickly online but at 9:15 am or so, you can check for cancellations for that day.
The museum seems to have strict policies such that even if there’s a no-show, you can’t buy tix.
We are sorry to miss the tour but glad for the opportunity to visit the museum.
Written May 27, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Margaret B
San Francisco, CA40 contributions
If you have even a slight interest in Irish history, I strongly recommend this tour, and I also strongly recommend that you request Mick as your guide. Mick is so well versed in the gaol's history and does such a good job of making it all come alive - I was riveted, listening to what he had to say throughout about the eventful and truly sad history of the gaol and its most notable prisoners. Mick encourages questions from tour participants, and was never at a loss for a full answer to whatever anyone asked. Mick also offered recommendations to us regarding how we could learn more about some of the prisoners held in the gaol so that we could deepen our understanding of those prisoners' beliefs and motivations and place them within the larger context of Irish history.
I would happily take this tour again with Mick - I know I'd enjoy it and that it would be well worth the time.
Written July 6, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Byron_Hennessey
Herndon, VA153 contributions
My family and I opted to visit the Kilmainham Gaol & museum and did the guided tour. I definitely recommend taking the guided tour as our guide was very knowledgeable about the gaol's history and the history of Ireland. The guided tour goes through various parts of the gaol, including the cells of key prisoners in Irish history, sites of executions, prison chapel, etc. The tour really conveys the dreariness of the prison, the harsh conditions the prisoners were subjected to (overcrowding, cold temperatures) and the depressing nature of being incarcerated there. The museum attached is excellent, loaded with historical artifacts, personal letters, photos and other items. My family group is of widely varying ages (27, 48, 57 and 78) and everyone thoroughly enjoyed the tour and the museum. I highly recommend visiting the Kilmainham Gaol as part of any visit to Dublin.
Written May 27, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Alilu007
Menlo Park, CA305 contributions
I found out late that you needed to book tickets way in advance for a tour of Kilmainham, and when I searched, they were booked solid for two straight weeks, which included the dates that we were going to be there, over the busy Fourth of July weekend, so I had low expectations that we were going to get a ticket.

However, we managed to get a set of tickets last minute!

Our plan was to check in the morning, as they said they had tickets released at around 9am every day. Out of curiosity, I checked the morning we were supposed to head out, and they didn't have anything. However, later in the day, I checked again, and it seemed like more availability had opened up, so I jumped on it and booked it. So while I think officially it said that tickets would be released once, it seemed like they released a few later on, so don't worry too much.

If I were to do it again, however, I would schedule this towards the end of my trip, after having learned some of the history behind the conflicts of that area, so that we would have had a bit more context on the people they mentioned that had done stints in Kilmainham.

As for the actual tour, I thought it was very entertaining and interesting! The tour guides do a great job of telling stories and answering questions. It was a great value relative to some of the costs of the other attractions (emigration museum, book of kells, etc), so would highly recommend.
Written July 10, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Bee
27 contributions
Couples
Adam our tour guide was amazing! The rain hit Dublin after such a long summer spell which to be honest seemed really fitting and added to the atmosphere, feeling the horror that is locked within it's walls.
Adam was dramatic, knowledgeable and passionate in his regaling of some of the stories of Kilmainham Gaol. He made the history come to life and at points brought me to geniune tears.
We had no expectations of the visit but we are so glad that we did it, it was the best visit we went on during our Dublin holiday and would highly recommend it to all.
The place is so haunting, you can feel the horror and despair by placing your hand on the walls while listening, there is a smell within the wooden doors and a darkness even in the light. We knew very little about Irish history but this has wetted our appetite and thirst for knowledge on the subject. Since our return to the New Forest we have been reading up on Irish history and in particular the Easter Uprising 1916. The story of Joseph and Grace was unknown to us, despite singing the song for years, we have Irish family but we simply never knew.
The black crosses where the leaders were shot and the stones where the gallows once protruded over the front door of the Goal brought out such poignant emotions as we paid our respects, that neither of us are able to articulate with mere words.
Thank you so much to Adam for his skill in answering all of our questions and bringing the Gaols history to life.
Written September 11, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Stacey Nicholas
3 contributions
Friends
I cannot recommend visiting this place for a guided tour enough. Our tour guide David was absolutely fantastic, very passionate and explained/spoke really clearly. I would urge anyone who visits Dublin to visit here, but to pre book tickets due to them being sold out if you turn up on the day
Written June 16, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Mrs D C
9 contributions
I had no idea what this experience was going to be like before I went. We took the tram to get there. We collected as a group in the old courtroom next door to the jail. Our guide then took us on a tour of the prison. Her knowledge of the history of the people who had been kept there was vast. She spoke with passion. I could not believe how interesting and moving the whole experience was. After the tour there was a museum about the jail and its inmates which also included some artefacts relating to Michael Collins even though he was not incarcerated there.

I wouldn't recommend this for young children as the main reason that it was such a great experience was listening to the tour guide explain the history of each section.
Written August 28, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Michelle G
5 contributions
Friends
The guided tour at Kilmainham Gaol was hands down the best experience of my 5-day trip to Ireland with my sister and my aunt. My sister and I are not big museum people, but virtually every “must do” list for visiting Dublin included this museum, so we thought we’d check it out. This tour perfectly frames Ireland’s fight for independence through the lens of the prison system in a way that I was not expecting when we first arrived. Before this tour, I already knew the basic outline about modern Irish history, but this tour put everything in a whole new perspective. Our tour guide was very engaging and knowledgeable. I would recommend this museum tour to anyone who has the opportunity to do it. The only downside is that the majority of the tour is not handicap accessible due to the narrow hallways and staircases throughout the wings of the prison.
Written July 2, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

nancyandbrian2016
Scottsdale, AZ96 contributions
We booked months in advance for the opportunity to tour this historic landmark in Dublin. We spent two weeks in Ireland for our 37th Wedding Anniversary and this experience was most definitely the highlight in Dublin, if not all of Ireland. Our guide was brimming with the history and horror of this part of Dublin's past. He brought everything to life, and he made us feel welcome to experience and learn about this troubled past. The timing and pacing are excellent for adults, and this is fantastic for teens, but youngsters would be easily bored within minutes. Put this on your to do list!
Written July 30, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

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Kilmainham Gaol Museum, Dublin

Frequently Asked Questions about Kilmainham Gaol Museum

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