The Phoenix Park Tea Rooms

by Kristin on August 11, 2011

Dublin Zoo is Ireland’s most popular visitor attraction (almost 1 million visitors last year in a country with a population of only 4.5 million) and we take the kids once or twice a year. I like the zoo as much as the next person, but my favourite part isn’t the tigers or the elephants or feeding time for the sealions — it’s treating ourselves to lunch at The Phoenix Park Tea Rooms located just outside the zoo entrance.

The Phoenix Park, established in 1662, covers 1,752 acres at the western end of Dublin’s city centre and is one of the largest parks in a European capital city. The Tea Rooms is located within the park in a tiny Victorian-style building dating from the late 1800s. Nestled in amongst huge old trees that tower over it and around it, the charming, picturesque Tea Rooms are like something out of a fairytale that you half expect to be made out of gingerbread.

They have a small but good selection on their menu, including soup, toasted sandwiches and paninis, and they even use a lot of organic ingredients. But the real highlight is their desserts. On the day we were there, they had bread and butter pudding, apple crisp, Banoffee pie, caramel slice, brownies, carrot cake, chocolate biscuit cake and banana, cinnamon and walnut cake. They also serve organic coffee and Fairtrade tea. On weekends you’ll see people sitting at the picnic tables outside with the newspaper, coffee and a scone after a walk through the park, maybe with their dog tied up to the fence beside them. It’s a little piece of heaven in the middle of the city.

Some words of warning though — the building is so small that strollers aren’t allowed inside if you’re planning on going with young children, but we only ever go when it’s a nice day anyway when we can sit outside. And even more importantly, the Tea Rooms only take cash, so be sure to have enough for lunch or a few treats in your wallet before you head to the park (there are no ATMs nearby) so you can enjoy this little gem of a place.

The Phoenix Park Tea Rooms
Phoenix Park
Dublin 8
+353 (0)1 671 4431

{ 5 comments… read them below or add one }

stasty August 11, 2011 at 11:02 am

Haven’t been to the zoo in about 10 years. Now I have a great excuse to make a day trip out of it and get some of those yummy desserts :-)

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Kristin August 18, 2011 at 2:34 pm

The whole time I’m in the zoo, I’m actually just thinking about what I’ll have for lunch and a treat afterwards!

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Móna Wise August 11, 2011 at 1:05 pm

I love the zoo and I love those tea rooms too. We always pack a picnic lunch and go there before we head home in the evening for a needed sugar rush. It is exactly how you describe it.
Fairytale like….

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Kristin August 11, 2011 at 8:57 pm

Móna, if I’m completely honest, about 45 minutes into the zoo, I’m ready to leave and go have my much-anticipated piece of cake! I like the zoo, but I like the Tea Rooms more.

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Cleo February 10, 2012 at 4:59 pm

Hey! visited Tea Rooms today after 2hr walk in mist through stunning Park, varied menu, many choices in confined space but not a smile from anyone as we selected, collected, paid for our and had our grub. Spanish tourist in our group also pointed this out! Guys lighten up, greet our few tourists with a welcome smile and maybe a bit of banter! Thought I would share this with you in an effort to encourage visitors as Phoenix Park, Zoo etc are so popular with so much demand for your Tea Rooms?

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