Dublin's prominence as the cultural leader of the Republic of Ireland is no less true of the districts north of the Liffey. Literature plays an extensive role in Dublin's contributions to world culture. James Joyce, Bram Stoker and Roddy Doyle all hail from Northside Dublin.
The Dublin Writers Museum at 18 Parnell Square North was built to honour their contributions and that of others such as Samuel Beckett and Oscar Wilde as well as all Irish writers from the beginning of its history.
James Joyce spent much of his youth around the Fairview and Drumcondra neighbourhoods, and The James Joyce Centre, located at 35 North Great George Street, was established to memorialise his contribution to literature. The centre shows exhibits related to Joyce's life and work, hosts lectures and walking, and organises the annual Bloomsday tradition where fans of Ulysses can retrace the protagonist's steps through Dublin.
If you find visual art more appealing than the written word, Dublin City Gallery The Hugh Lane is located at Parnell Square on O'Connell Street and features a permanent collection of contemporary Irish art.
For a more purely historical focus, Phoenix Park's Ashtown Castle Visitor Centre is a fully restored medieval tower dating back to the 1600s. The Pearse Museum in Rathfarnham north-east of the city centre is housed in a Georgian mansion surrounded by parkland. Exhibits focus on the Pearse brothers, known for their educational and political activism. Admission to both of these attractions is free of charge.
The National Wax Museum on Granby Row in Parnell Square has some educational value or with life-sized Simpsons and superhero figures at least tries to market itself towards visitors with families.