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“Treasure trove. Come see!!”

National Museum of Ireland - Archaeology
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$393.56*
and up
Private Tour: Irish Ancestry and Heritage Walking Tour in Dublin
Ranked #15 of 503 things to do in Dublin
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: <1 hour
Owner description: The National Museum of Ireland - Archaeology is the national repository for all archaeological objects found in Ireland and home to over two million artefacts. Permanent Exhibitions: Our exhibitions include the finest collection of prehistoric gold artefacts in western Europe, outstanding examples of metalwork from the Celtic Iron Age and the Museum’s world-renowned collection of medieval ecclesiastical objects and jewellery. The Treasury: Ór - Ireland's Gold, Prehistoric Ireland, Kingship and Sacrifice, Viking Ireland, Medieval Ireland, Ancient Egypt, Ceramics and Glass from Ancient Cyprus, Life and Death in the Roman World. There is also a number of Temporary Exhibitions taking place.
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8 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
“Treasure trove. Come see!!”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 20, 2013 via mobile

This is by far my favourite place in Dublin to kill time. Particularly if it's raining outside. It's free admission, like all our national museums, and it's absolutely fascinating if you are an archaeology/prehistory fan! It houses the majority of our national artefacts from the neolithic right through to medieval, and also has some egyptian stuff.

If it is your first visit, take a guided tour. But allow extra time to look around yourself afterwards. Look up when you walk in- the entrance dome over the gift shop is pretty!

You'll see lots of bronze age horns and a bronze trumpet in the collection, and crotales (bells) and I REALLY recommend buying the cd in the gift shop of Simon O'Dwyer playing these horns for the first time since their discovery. Musical instruments are best enjoyed by listening to them, even the ancient ones! And I'm pretty sure the cd is not available to download online anywhere, so pick it up while you're there, because hearing those horns sound for the first time is like listening to a very human call across the millennia and is the closest thing you'll get to time travel. Music is so timeless.

Apart from the musical instruments, my favourite items are the whimsical day-to-day things that give us a better insight into our ancestors' lives. For example: the bronze tweezers- vanity or surgical? Stone age beads and buttons (their jewellery was awesome!) the stone dildo from Knowth (sorry I mean "ritual fertility object") the mesolithic wooden model boat (if that's what it is, how cute- making toy boats to keep the kids entertained while you were busy killing something to feed them. Aww.) The mysterious significance of placing a single quartz crystal in with a cremated burials, which seemed a popular practice. And the elaborate hairstyle (complete with preserved head lice) of a certain royal bog body! His fingerprints are also fascinating.

Every time I come back here I see something a little differently. Take your time and enjoy.

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Thank lamb-shank86
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Morro Bay, California, United States
Level Contributor
30 reviews
13 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 28 helpful votes
“Not to be missed”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 19, 2013

I learned so much about Irish history at the museum--my head is still swimming. A must do for anyone visiting Ireland, and lifelong residents alike!

Visited November 2012
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Thank journeysofdiscovery
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Springfield, Missouri
Level Contributor
141 reviews
43 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 40 helpful votes
“Really Cool Pete Bog People and Viking Artifacts”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 17, 2013

It is terrific that the museums in Ireland are FREE! The National Museum of Ireland in Dublin is really cool. Great displays and interesting building itself! The Pete Bog people are really unusual and interesting.

Visited March 2013
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Thank alr464
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Castlebar, Ireland
Level Contributor
14 reviews
6 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
“Very good”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 17, 2013

I'm always surprised at the standard of Irish museums. Up there with the best. A huge amount of renowned artefacts, communicative staff and good layout. Gift shop is extremely expensive. No surprises there really.

Visited October 2012
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Thank Finn A
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Dudley, West Midlands, England
Level Contributor
65 reviews
18 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 38 helpful votes
“Wish we had more time there”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 17, 2013

Although not a huge museum you will need to give it a couple of hours (we had left it until an hour before closing to go na dhad to hurry round the upper level. The gold exhibits are particularly good as are the 'bog bodies'. We spoke to one member of staff who was very helpful. It is certainly worth a visit.

Visited March 2013
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Thank Jaymiller
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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