Bars typically serve until about 23:00 Mon-Wed and about 24:00 Thurs-Sat. Late bars and clubs usually serve until 02.30, though if you’re a resident in a hotel you can drink in the residential bar as late as you want (within reason, of course).
Some clubs and bars don’t welcome those who are too casually dressed (battered sneakers or runners in particular seem to annoy doormen) so make a bit of an effort.
Indie music venues
There’s a veritable hub of bars for music fans, some of which are live music venues linked with traditional bars. On Camden St and neighbouring Wexford St (in the Southside of the city centre), there’s a nice selection of bars for alternative music fans.
The good news - Dublin has a great variety of clubs regardless of your music tastes, sexual preference and nightlife habits. The bad news - most have a cover charge, sometimes between €15-20 on weekends. Most of them close (ie stop serving drink) at about 02:30, but some stay open a little later. The mythical lock-in (when the venue closes the shutters and serves drink long after closing time) happens very rarely - we estimate an average three times in a lifetime - but it does happen.
Not quite pubs, not quite clubs, but essential in a country with such archaic licensing laws, late bars serve much the same purpose as nightclubs (dancefloor, late license...) but are essentially pubs that don’t charge you in (at least before a certain time) but stay open late. They’re often, we think, preferable to clubs and draw a marginally older crowd.