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The Stag's Head is one of Dublin's loveliest pubs. Tucked down a lane off Dame Street and beloved of generations of discriminating students, it is long, narrow and wood-panelled, and yes, features a stag's head (splendid, if you like that sort of thing) above the main bar. The little snug is perfect on a chilly afternoon, although, like the main bar, it gets very busy at night. The pub grub is probably the best in the city. A gem.
With plenty of huge screens broadcasting the most exciting games, Woolshed Baa & Grill is the place to go to watch sports and enjoy a cold beer. Their menu features classics like wings, fries, nachos, and more. With regular theme nights and specials, there's always something going on at this friendly bar.
An integral part of Dublin's music, Whelan's front bar is convivial and relaxed, with an intimate music venue that's the real heart of the place. It's a great spot to catch some of Dublin's better bands; there's a strong contemporary country or roots slant to a lot of the acts. On weekends, a club follows the gig so you don't have to rush home. Check the local listings for what's on, and tip your hat to the eerily lifelike sculpture at the bar.
The Harbour Bar in Bray seems like a hidden gem, but it's well-known, especially among celebrities. This charming bar has eccentric furniture and occasionally hosts live-music gigs. The different rooms in the bar all have a different atmosphere, but no matter where you have a pint in this bar, you'll be sure to feel welcome.