Opening Hours

  Mon-Thurs, Sun: 4pm–11.30pm

  Fri-Sat: 4pm-12.30am (winter)

  Opening earlier in summer

Contact Us


  Address: 1 Strand Road, Bray

  Co. Wicklow, Ireland

  (across from the Harbour)


  theharbourbarbray @


Why not suprise a friend with one of our Gift cards? Available for purchase behind the bar.

Local Taxis

  Andy's Cabs:

  Dargle Cabs:

  M.T. Cabs:

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The Harbour Bar first opened in 1871. In the last century it has served as both a bar and a make shift undertaker for when the harbour was used by sailors delivering coal to the port. There are four distinct spaces.

The Harbour Bar Bray back in the dayThe Harbour Bar Bray - outside

The original bar was enlarged over the years when then owners bought the neighbouring houses on Dock Terrace, and added the snug, the lounge, a conservatory and the performance area in the back. There is also a large beer garden, perfect for pints in the summer.

The Harbour Bar Bray - O'Toole familyThe bar has been in the O’Toole family for three generations. Wicklow TD, James O’Toole, who also fought in the War of Independence, bought the bar in 1931. Des and Paul inherited the business from their father. In fact its official name is O'Toole Bros. Des, sadly, passed away in 2009 and the pub remains in the hands of his brother, Paul, and his widow, Maureen.

In turn it is now managed by Des's son, Colin O'Toole, who has given it a welcoming vibe. It plays host to traditional Irish music sessions, stand-up comedy, alternative music and a host of other events on any given night.


Legendary actor and hellraiser Peter O'Toole often drank in the bar when he was working in nearby Ardmore Studios and, indeed, often had to be helped back to his hotel - the International on the promenade, long since destroyed by fire - by one of the owners, Des O'Toole, who would deliver him into the care of the night porter. As a token of his appreciation, he donated a mounted deer's head used as a prop in Woody Allen's “What's New, Pussycat?”and it remains proudly on display in the back lounge.


The bar plays host to the Bray Music Video Awards, sponsored by Ardmore Studios, and sell paintings by aspiring artists without taking any commission. In the best Van Gogh tradition, the artists often donate works to the bar, where they form a very eclectic backdrop - you'll see everything here, from Russian Expressionism to the occultist to the avant garde, even two works by the famous artist, Rasher.


The famous moose head at the best bar in the world

A performance of the Rocky Horror Picture Show, which saw all the customers dress as their favourite characters, even led to the formation of a very successful burlesque troupe, The Love Cats.


The great virtue of the pub comes from the egalitarian vibe; everyone is treated exactly the same. Because of that ease and lack of ceremony, the Harbour Bar has, over the years, been a regular haunt of celebrities, Bono from U2, Oscar winner, Neil Jordan (Crying Game, Interview with a Vampire), Brendan Gleeson, Cillian Murphy, Liam Neeson, Beverly D’Angelo (Entourage, American History X), Simon Delaney, who filmed part of Zonad there, and musicians Sinead O’Conner, Mary Coughlin, Shane MacGowan of the Pogues, Ronnie Drew, The Dubliners, Christy Moore, Damian Dempsey, Brendan Behan, James Joyce (who once lived across the road), Peter O’Toole, Lawrence Oliver, Katherine Hepburn.


The bar also has been home to many rescue cats, most famously Raoul, Cinders and Fidel.They're so used to having lights, people and noise around them, the TV vet Pete Wedderburn often uses them in the studio and they have appeared on Ireland AM and on The Den (Johnny Morrison, the man behind Dustin the Turkey, is yet another regular).