Explore Dublin through innovative, immersive AR map

Interactive 3D map DiscovAR Dublin uses new open Google Maps technology so that tourists from all over the world can explore the city. 

An augmented reality (AR) mapping feature has been added to the Dublin Discovery Trails app, so that users can open up an interactive 3D map of the city and explore it in new ways that combine real-world history with the latest smart tech. Attractions, landmarks, monuments and museums can be uncovered through the new map. Places to explore include the award-winning social history museum at 14 Henrietta Street, Irish emigration museum Epic and the Guiness Storehouse.

Dublin city skyline during night time

Photo of Dublin by Andrei Carina

It’s the latest example of innovative use being made of mapping technology – a subject we’ve covered a lot in recent months. 

DiscovAR Dublin is built using Geospatial Creator, which in turn uses a third party Unity package called Cesium to render Google Map Tiles in the Unity editor’s scene window. From this, an interactive 3D map of the city is created.

The trails app, which launched earlier this year, is one element in a wider ‘smart tourism’ strategy, with investment in tech to transform the tourism experience in Dublin. The mapping project is the result of collaboration between the Dublin City Council, Smart Dublin and Virgin Media Business. Leading augmented reality and digital storytelling company Peel X developed the mapping feature for the Dublin Discovery Trails app. 

Developed as part of the Dublin City Council Tourism Strategy 2023-2028 Innovation pillar, the immersive Dublin Discovery Trails app is a first of its kind immersive heritage and storytelling platform, produced by Dublin City Council in partnership with Fáilte Ireland. 

The aim is to help users learn more about Dublin and its rich history and extensive sights of interest. It can act as a guide to locals and tourists in the city, and also be used in to prepare a visit – in advance of getting to Dublin. 

Daithí de Róiste, Lord Mayor of Dublin, says: ‘This is first for Ireland, the user can literally step into the city from anywhere in the world and explore Dublin in the palm of their hand.  

‘This innovative technology will help further position Dublin as a world class destination with this new experience. I’m delighted to launch DiscovAR here today and I’d encourage everyone to download the app and try it today to explore the best of what Dublin has to offer.’ 

Jamie Cudden, Smart City Lead at Dublin City Council, adds: ‘DiscovAR offers a new way for visitors and locals to experience the capital city. Through our Smart Dublin programme, we are always thinking about how we can embrace new technologies to enhance how people engage with our capital city. 

‘This app through its immersive AR technology is a new and fun way to explore the city’s culture and history and we see huge potential to expand this.’ 

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