Menu

50 Outstanding Places to Take Your Child this Summer in Ireland

As parents, we are always on the lookout for great places that are child-friendly and fun to visit. We have picked 50 Outstanding Places to Take Your Child This Summer in Ireland! You’ll find a mixture of paid for and free places to visit, indoors and outdoors venues, old historical places and fun modern attractions.

We hope you have fun visiting them all and be sure to let us know how you got on and what you thought of them, we always welcome feedback!

Sign up for our free newsletter, find us on facebook and Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, Pinterest and please share this with your family & friends if you liked it!

Leinster

#1. National Museum of Ireland – Dublin

The National Museum of Ireland in Dublin are all free to visit and have great collections as well as a wide range of ongoing events for families. The National Museum of Ireland – Decorative Arts & History is home to a wide range of objects, which include weaponry, furniture, silver, ceramics and glassware; as well as examples of Folk life and costume.

national-museum-archaeology_1The National Museum of Ireland – Natural History has galleries of animals from Ireland and overseas, also geological exhibits form a total collection of about 2 million scientific specimens with a Discovery Zone.

Opened in 1890, the National Museum of Ireland – Archaeology is the national repository for all archaeological objects found in Ireland and displays artefacts dating from 7000 BC to the 20th century. The Irish archaeology collections include The Treasury, featuring outstanding examples of Celtic and Medieval art.

In both the Decorative Arts & History and Archaeology brances of the National Museum of Ireland there is a Museum shop selling gifts, books, jewellery and replica items and also a café offering snacks and hot and cold beverages.

#2. Irish National Stud, Kildare

Enjoy a great day out for all the family at the Irish National Stud & Gardens in Kildare Town, Co. Kildare. Just off the M7 motorway and only 30 minutes by car from Dublin and the M50, the Irish National Stud is home to both wonderful horses and great gardens.

The Irish National Stud offers an unforgettable experience in 800 acres of beautiful Kildare countryside that can be enjoyed by all the family. It is a unique attraction of outstanding natural beauty with some of the most magnificent horses and sumptuous gardens to be found anywhere in the world.

Don’t Miss: Complimentary pony rides and face painting every Wednesday and Sunday in July & August for all our younger visitors!

#3. The Ark, Dublin


50 Places AdThe Ark’s summer programme is always a big hit with families looking for creative and fun activities during the school holidays.

This summer at The Ark experience a world full of Colour! Be guided through the interactive exhibition that brings to life the fascinating stories of creating and using colour in all its forms. At the end of the tour you will become an artist as you move into The Ark workshop and create your own piece of artwork inspired by one of the themes in the exhibition, guided by a professional artist.

Don’t Miss: The chance to learn how your favourite colour is made! There will be a different workshop option each week, so check out their website to find out more.

#4. Zipit Forest Adventures, Dublin

Zipit Forest Adventures offers up to 4 hours of tree-top, fun-filled, thrilling experiences in a healthy, outdoor setting for adults and children from age 7.

At their location at Tibradden Woods, D16 you can climb poles and climbing walls, swing into cargo nets, balance on a rope bridge, hurtle down a zipwire.

From beginners to adrenaline junkies, everybody can have a fun experience with guidance and encouragement from instructors and knowing that you are secure in your harness.

Don’t Miss: Cycling a BMX across a Treetop Bridge!

#5. Powerscourt Estate, Wicklow

powerscourt-waterfall_1Experience one of the best views in Ireland at Powerscourt Gardens, just 20km south of Dublin City Centre. Featuring ornate Italian and Japanese Gardens where mum and dad can enjoy a romantic stroll to rambling, wooded walks where little ones can play hide and seek, Powerscourt offers a fantastic family day out.

Children love climbing the Pepper Pot Tower and posing for a picture with the cannons nearby. Enjoy the year-round events programme of treasure hunts, enchanted walks and lots more.

Don’t miss: Powerscourt, the highest waterfall in Ireland, located 5 km from the main Estate where you can discover trees that are hundreds of years old such as the Giant Redwoods which grow up to 80m high!

#6. Imaginosity, Dublin

Imaginosity, Dublin Children’s Museum is a child-centred creative, educational & interactive space, suitable for children up to the age of 9 years & their families.

It is a space for adults & children to engage in creative play, emphasizing learning through hands-on experience and engagement. Imaginosity’s 3 floors of exhibits are educationally designed to inspire life-long learning through play, celebrating children’s imaginations, on the journey from curiosity to discovery. Booking is essential to guarantee entry.

Don’t Miss: Imaginosity’s Summer Camps, running weekly from the 29th of June, with themes ranging from Elsa & Olaf camp, to Super Science Camp, to Imaginosity’s Little School of Magic. Check out www.imaginosity.ie for more info.

#7. Belvedere House, Westmeath

Belvedere House - LeinsterBelvedere House is set on an elevated site overlooking Lough Ennell with spectacular views of the 160 acre estate, complete with Victorian walled Garden, exotic trees and numerous follies including the infamous Jealous Wall. The House is fully restored and offers an interpretative ‘Upstairs Downstairs’ experience and an Owner’s Gallery.

The Walled Garden is 1.5 acre sloped garden with formal lawns, old rose beds, tumbling herbaceous borders, alpines, climbers, a fragrant potager and a Victorian style glass house with exotic plants. Café, gift shop, interpretative centre and exhibition galleries.

Don’t Miss: the Narnia Trail and the Fairy Garden!

#8. Secret Valley Wildlife Park, Wexford

secret valleySecret Valley Wildlife Park, Wexford, has fourteen acres of fun-filled adventures from bottle-feeding the hungry kid goats to riding Snowball the pony, with a variety of animals inside and out, they promise unforgettable, great value, family fun.

Don’t miss: the lovely lemurs, Roxy, Lenny and Penny!

#9. Malahide Castle, Dublin

Take a guided tour of one of Ireland’s oldest castles dating back to the 12th Century and learn the fascinating & colourful history behind the Talbot Family who owned Malahide Castle for nearly 800 years! Don’t get spooked in Puck’s corner!

Explore Malahide Walled Botanical Garden & Exhibition, perfect for little exploreres with 7 glasshouses, 5000 species of plants, a grass parterre and lots of wild life roaming happily. Visit the West Lawn and take your picture beside some of the oldest trees on the Malahide Castle demesne – including the contorted branches of the old oak tree and the ornamental ‘Cedar of Lebanon’ tree believed to be nearly 400 years old!

With 22 acres to explore it might be worth bringing your picnic and a flask!

Don’t Miss: The state of the art playground at Malahide Castle is located just 2 minutes from the Visitor Centre and has plenty of apparatus for the very little ones and the not so little ones to enjoy!

#10. Wexford Lavender Farm, Wexford

Wexford Lavender Farm is Ireland’s first Lavender Farm, with 2 acres of Lavender and woodland walks with 3 routes to suit all abilities. Kids will love riding through the lavender field on Billy the friendly Bull quad train, and playing in their outdoor playground.

And of course you can take home some Lavender plants for your own garden.

Don’t Miss: a homemade treat or lunch in The Purple Haze Cafe

#11. Croke Park Stadium Tour & GAA Museum, Dublin

croke-park-skylineThe Croke Park Stadium Tour offers you the chance to explore the home of Gaelic sport and take a behind-the-scenes journey through this 82,300 capacity stadium. Enjoy an unrivalled state-of-the-art interactive visitor experience and find out more about Ireland’s unique national games of Gaelic football and hurling, the fastest field team sport in the world. The guided Stadium Tour offers an access-all-areas experience as you walk in the footsteps of legends and visit the team dressing rooms before going pitch-side via the players’ tunnel and taking a seat in the VIP area. Enjoy panoramic views from the top tier of the stand – 30 meters above the famous pitch!

The whole family can explore the GAA Museum with its exhibition galleries that vividly illustrate the story of Gaelic games from ancient times to present day. Featured exhibitions include the original Sam Maguire and Liam MacCarthy Cups, the official GAA Hall of Fame, temporary exhibitions and many other exhibits.

Don’t Miss: Test your hurling and football skills in the interactive games zone – a must for museum visitors of all ages!

#12. Shackleton Experience, Dublin

shackleton-exhibition2Visit the Shackleton Endurance exhibition in Dún Laoghaire Harbour, for a taste of their epic adventure. For almost two years, no one knew where they were or if they were alive. The 28 men on Sir Ernest Shackleton’s 1914-17 Trans-Antarctic expedition endured freezing temperatures, the loss of their ship and a rescue mission that faced impossible odds. Their survival was a triumph of hope and faith in an inspired leader. Learn about the most extraordinary maritime rescue in history. The story of the Endurance Expedition is told through Frank Hurley’s photographs, unique video footage and much more.

Don’t Miss: the life size replica of the rescue boat the James Caird, which gives you a real sense of how small the boat was compared to the huge ocean.

#13. Spire of Lloyd, Meath

spireofloydThe Spire of Lloyd in Kells is an inland lighthouse designed by Henry Aaron Baker (designer of the King’s Inn, Dublin) for the First Earl of Bective in memory of his father Sir Thomas Taylor in 1791. At 30m high, one can see magnificent views of the surrounding countryside as far as the Mourne Mountains in County Down, Northern Ireland on a clear day. The Spire was used to view horse racing and the hunt in the 19th century. It is open on selected dates during the summer.

Don’t Miss: the “Paupers Graveyard” in the community park (The People’s Park) in which many victims of the mid-19th century famine lie buried.

#14. Lough Boora Discovery Park, Offaly

lough boora parklandsFor something unique, visit Lough Boora Parklands in Co Offaly.  At Junction 7 on the M6 Dublin/Galway exit towards Moate/ Clonmacnoise and follow signs for Kilcormac and Lough Boora.

The Discovery Park consists of a magnificent collection of natural & manmade lakes, wetlands, woodland areas, 50km of walkways. Picnic benches and a bike hire facility, as well as guided tours are also available.

Don’t Miss: the sculptures throughout the parklands!

#15. Emo Court House & Gardens, Laois

emo court

Emo Court, near Emo village, Laois, was designed by the architect James Gandon in 1790 for the Earls of Portarlington and is a magnificent example of this neo-classical style. The house, which is accessible by guided tour only, is surrounded by beautiful gardens and parkland which were first laid out in the 18th century and contain formal lawns, a lake and woodland walks with many very fine trees and shrubs.

The gardens are open all year and entry to the gardens is free. The tearooms in the walled garden are worth a visit.

Don’t Miss: Take the 2.2km walking loop of the 20 acre man made lake, which includes foot bridges and pathways. 

#16. Castletown House, Kildare

Castletown HouseCastletown House, Celbridge, is Ireland’s largest and earliest Palladian style house, with 120 acres of parkland. Guided tours of house from March to October daily, with Self Guide/Audio Guide option on Sundays. The beautiful restored parklands and river walks are open every day throughout the year and there is no charge to explore the parklands.

There are free children’s workshops on Sundays, and a regular programme of events throughout the summer months, including free music recitals, monthly markets and children’s tours of the house during school holidays.

Don’t Miss: the Summer Sunday Series free music recitals on Sunday afternoons in June, July and August between 2pm and 4pm.

#17. Altamont Gardens, Carlow

Altamont GardensKnown as the most romantic garden in Ireland, Altamont, near Tullow, is an enchanting blend of formal and informal gardens located on a 100 acre estate. Whilst still little known, it ranks in the top ten of Irish gardens and is often referred to as ‘the jewel in Ireland’s gardening crown’. The formal lawns slope down to a romantic lake, and there’s a fascinating walk, which kids love, through the Arboretum and Bog Garden. There’s a garden centre, tea-rooms during summer months, and picnic areas.

Don’t Miss: the Ice Age Glen with its canopy of ancient oaks leading to the River Slaney

#18. Castlecomer Discovery Park, Kilkenny

Located 18 km North of Kilkenny City, Castlecomer Discovery Park has a range of exciting recreational, cultural and educational activities for visitors of all ages. Attractions include pedal boats and Canadian canoes on one of the picturesque lakes, a Tree Top Adventure Walk course nestled 10m high in the great Sycamore and Lime trees, a ‘Leap of Faith’ and Climbing Wall.

This ‘young park’ opened in 1997 and has 80 acres of natural woodland with 6km of trails throughout, a fishing lake, an interactive coal mining museum, design craft workshops and award winning Jarrow café (Bridgestone listed).

Don’t Miss: 3 permanent orienteering trails, perfect for a bit of trail practice with a compass!

#19. Sea Life Bray, Wicklow

SeaLifeFor something to do with all the family, you need go no further than Bray’s Seafront, where you will find the National SEA LIFE Centre. SEA LIFE Bray is home to over 1000 fresh water and marine creatures from Ireland and all over the world in 29 amazing displays: from Perch to Piranhas, from Starfish to Sharks!  Discover Ireland’s largest collection of sharks, and marvel at these amazing creatures up close!

Don’t Miss: the Interactive Rockpool where you can hold a crab & touch a starfish

#20. Dublinia, Dublin

DubliniaAt Dublinia, travel back to Viking and Medieval Dublin, witness the sights, sounds and smells and unearth the city’s archaeology in the History Hunters exhibition! With a full programme of events taking place at weekends during the summer, including Family First Saturdays which includes medieval pot making workshops, puppet shows and much more, and there’s Viking Dublin Tours, Medieval Dublin tours and lots more, there’s heaps for families to do at Dublinia.

Don’t Miss: Family First Saturdays with fun workshops and more.

#21. Jump Zone, Dublin

Jump ZoneJump Zone is Ireland’s first indoor trampoline park, located in Stillorgan and Santry, Dublin. Jump Zone offers a number of trampoline activities including open jumping, Trampoline Dodge ball, and trampoline Aerobics on its wall to wall trampolines.

Adults as well as kids can enjoy!

#22. Viking Splash Tours, Dublin

Viking Splash ToursViking Splash Tours is Ireland’s only tour company that shows you the sights of Dublin on both land and water, without having to leave the vehicle! Take a trip on their World War II amphibious DUKWS as they bring you on a fun filled tour through the streets of the capital with engaging Viking captains, before splashing down in Grand Canal Dock! Please note children must be aged 3 or over to travel on the water section of the tour.

Connacht

#23. Lough Key Forest & Activity Park, Roscommon

Located in Boyle, Co. Roscommon and set in the grounds of the old King-Harman Estate on the shores of island studded Lough Key, the Lough Key Forest and Activity Park, offers hours of entertainment for all the family.

A wonderful Adventure Play Kingdom will entertain the smallest visitors while the weather independent Boda Borg Challenge will test the mental skills and physical agility of everybody over seven! Take a boat trip on the lake or out to the islands, try the Zipit courses and you can even stay over in the campsite.

There are miles of biking trails and orienteering courses and loads of picnic spots as well as the Lakeside Café.

Don’t Miss: The Treecanopy walk and climb to the top of the Moylurg Viewing Tower

#24. National Museum of Ireland – Country Life, Mayo

Museum of Country LIfe MayoThe National Museum of Ireland – Country Life, Castlebar, brings to life the traditions of rural life in Ireland. Exhibitions are full of wonderful objects from long ago. See what schools were like, the toys children played with and how they marked special events like Halloween & Christmas.

Learn about how people lived in the towns and countryside, cut turf, caught fish and worked in the home. Workshops, exhibitions and family programmes for all ages and entry is free.

Don’t Miss: a stroll around the lake and lunch in the courtyard cafe.

#25. Westport House & Pirate Adventure Park

Westport House 20-08-2014_2691-sqA visit to the West is not complete without a trip to the home of family fun at Westport House & Pirate Adventure Park.

Set on the 480 acre estate, explore the House and Gardens, or have some fun in the Pirate Adventure Park – a treasure trove of family fun with its Grace O’Malley-themed amusement park with rides and activities. Or take a trip of the newest attraction the Westport Train Tour which runs right through the grounds.

You also have a choice of milder to wilder adventure activities including zorbing, zip wire, archery, combat games, high ropes frame as well as tree climbing and archery tag. Be sure to arrive early for a full day’s fun – and dress for the weather!

Don’t Miss: The Swan boats!

#26. Athenry Heritage Centre

Athenry Heritage Centre The Athenry Heritage Centre is the ideal place to experience history the fun way. The ‘Medieval Experience’ provides visitors of all ages the opportunity to dress up in medieval costume and become a Knight, Princess, a Lord or Lady of the Manor. Discover your inner Robin Hood with our exciting Have-A-Go Archery activity and engage with history using interactive exhibits, which includes weapons and armour from the middle ages.

Experience the market street and see the dark side of life in the centre’s medieval dungeon. Relax in the picnic area afterwards. The centre’s tour guides are here to make sure everyone has fun in the best-preserved medieval town in Ireland.

Don’t Miss: exploring the wooden maze!

#27. Galway Atlantaquaria, Galway

Galway AtlantaquariaThe first time you venture through the entrance to Galway Atlantaquaria, Ireland’s largest aquarium, we guarantee you’ll jump!  That’s because their first exhibit is Ireland’s largest “Splash” tank!

You’ll also enjoy the ray pool, ocean tank, fin whale skeleton, touch pools and heaps of activities and fun things to do while you visit such as feeding the fish and touching starfish and crabs.

Don’t Miss: the Eel tank – see if you can spot them sliding in and out of the pipes!

#28. Brigit’s Garden, Galway

brigits gardenBrigit’s Garden in West Galway, located between Moycullen and Oughterard, is a magical place for families to explore.

With family-friendly Celtic gardens, children’s discovery trail, willow play area and sandpit, Nature trail, ring-fort and crannog, gift shop and the award-winning, family friendly Garden Café.

Don’t Miss: The fun nature trail that takes you around the Garden

#29. Zipit Forest Adventures, Roscommon

zipit photo_mykidstimeZipit Forest Adventures offers up to 4 hours of tree-top, fun-filled, thrilling experiences in a healthy, outdoor setting for adults and children from age 7.

At their location in Lough Key in Roscommon you can climb poles and climbing walls, swing into cargo nets, balance on a rope bridge, hurtle down a zipwire.

From beginners to adrenaline junkies, everybody can have day a fun experience with guidance and encouragement from instructors and knowing that you are secure in your harness.

Don’t Miss: Cycling a BMX across a Treetop Bridge!

#30. Funny Bones, Sligo

Funny Bones House of Fun is a large children’s activity centre based in Collooney, outside Sligo. Vertigo @ Funny Bones is a unique adventure zone for older children, Student and Corporate groups.

Vertigo is not for the faint hearted with a specially built 6 meter climbing wall and high ropes adventure course not to mention the fun to be had in their Hurricane.

Go Karting and Laser fun are also available. And for younger kids, there’s lots of fun at their soft play section.

Don’t Miss: Vertigo High Ropes Adventure Course, not for the fainthearted!

#31. The Burren Nature Sanctuary, Galway

burren nature sanctuaryThe Burren Nature Sanctuary near Kinvara, is an interpretive centre for the natural history of the Burren. There’s an Adventure Playground with excellent equipment, including a fantastic sand pit. Afterwards, take the 1K Nature Trail, a gentle loop walk where you can feed the sheep and see llamas.

Kids can do a nature trail activity where they can make rubbings of leaves and other nature items on the way around and return their sheet for a “reward”. Indoors there’s an artisan cafe, and soft play area with slides, ball pool and climbing frames. Free for Adults. See our Family Trip to the Burren.

Don’t Miss: Feeding the animals as you wind your way around the nature trail. 

#32. Jackie Clarke Collection, Mayo

 Jackie Clarke CollectionLocated in Ballina, the Jackie Clarke Collection showcases one of the world’s leading collections of historical Irish material. Discover 400 years of Irish history through the self-guiding family friendly interactive touch screens.

Discover something new about your family history by searching the in-house census and eviction records. Learn about Irish Native trees, organic vegetable gardening and the importance of our hedgerows in the Urban Walled Garden. Admission is FREE and you can enjoy lunch in cafe after your visit.

Don’t Miss: The Memory Pod where you can record and share your stories and memories. 

Munster

#33. Fota Wildlife Park, Cork

See a Kangaroo hop in front of you or get close to a Ring-tailed Lemur! Fota Wildlife Park is only 20 mins from Cork and is a great day out for all the family. For a fun Family Day Out in Cork, there is no better place to visit than Fota Wildlife Park.

Whether you’re seeking outdoor activities for children in the summer, holiday camps or you simply want to take advantage of some sunny weekend weather, the Park has a variety of things to do for children and parents alike.

Don’t Miss: the new arrivals this summer, the 2-tonne Indian Rhinos!

#34. King John’s Castle, Limerick

King Johns CastleKing John’s Castle delivers a modern visitor experience with a dramatic history of over 800 years of stories, all brought to life in a stunning exhibition. Touch-screen technology connects you to tales of siege and warfare, and a dazzling array of computer generated imagery, animations and ghostly projections are all part of the experience. Try on historic costumes including 18th century dresses or chainmail tunics. 3D models, discovery drawers and audio visuals help you to delve into the Castle’s history.

The busy Castle courtyard is home to a medieval campaign tent, a blacksmith’s forge and scenes from a 17th century siege. An array of colourful characters, reveal the secrets and scandals of castle life. Not to be missed!!!  Read what Jill and her family thought of King John’s Castle.

Don’t Miss: The Audio Visual Characters from the past that talk to you!

#35. Bunratty Castle & Folk Park, Clare

Bunratty CastleAt Bunratty Castle & Folk Park everywhere is open for you to explore! The Castle is the most complete and authentic medieval fortress in Ireland. Built in 1425 it was restored in 1954 to its former medieval splendour and now contains mainly 15th and 16th century furnishings, tapestries, and works of art which capture the mood of those times.

Wander through the castle and marvel at the finest collection of medieval furniture in the country which brings to life a vital part of our medieval past. Visit the farm houses and cottages and watch the tasks of rural Irish life. Make sure you see the baking of the griddle bread next to the fire and tasting it hot with fresh creamery butter.

Don’t Miss: the new playground full of fantastic play equipment!

#36. Craggaunowen, Clare

Lughnasa at CraggaunowenA highlight of any visit to Ireland is the Living Past Experience at Craggaunowen. It is off the beaten track and will give you a real sense of stepping back in time. The many paths of Craggaunowen have something of interest to adults and children alike. Explore the grounds and you may even meet some Bronze Age animals, our wild boar and soay sheep!

Don’t forget to visit the ‘Brendan Boat’ – a leather hulled boat built by Tim Severin who sailed across the Atlantic re-enacting the voyage of St. Brendan. To get away from the hustle and bustle of life stop into the wonderfully relaxing Tea Room and enjoy a fresh scone and other homemade fare on offer. It’s fun for all the family!

Don’t miss: Lughnasa Festival August 2nd & 3rd 2015, a festival in honour of the Celtic God Lugh of the Tuatha de Danann, God of arts and crafts, and it marks the start of the harvest season

#37. Titanic Experience Cobh, Cork

Titanic CobhThe Titanic Experience, Cobh tells the story of a legend and her connection to Cobh. Situated in the original offices of The White Star Line, retrace the footsteps of the 123 Queenstown Passengers who boarded Titanic from Cobh.

Upon check-in at the White Star Line Ticket Office you will receive your boarding card. Your boarding card will have the details of one of the 123 passengers who came to the White Star Line Ticket Office on Thursday April 11th 1912.

After check-in, experience life on board through the innovative audio visual technology, and replica set designs and discover the facts surrounding the tragic sinking of Titanic.

Don’t miss: the end when you will find out if you are a survivor or not!

#38. Hunt Museum Limerick

Hunt Museum ImageThis Summer the Hunt Museum in Limerick is jam packed with family friendly and kids activities. The museum will be running it’s Summer Camps for July and August. It will be hosting special event for Heritage week in August and for Culture Night in September.

As well as all this you can also get a unique tour of the collection from one of our expert guides. This is a great way to view the museum; every guide is different and will offer a fascinating personal experience of the Hunt collection. To find out what’s on in the Hunt during your visit be sure to check the website!

Don’t Miss:  Get Hands On! Where you can encounter artefacts in a new and exciting way through tactile, family friendly object handling sessions. Every Mon-Fri 11am-1pm and 2pm-4pm. Free with admission.

#39. Zipit Forest Adventures, Cork

zipitwallclimbingariel

Zipit Forest Adventures offers up to 4 hours of tree-top, fun-filled, thrilling experiences in a healthy, outdoor setting for adults and children from age 7.

At their location at Farran Woods in Cork you can climb poles and climbing walls, balance on a rope bridge, hurtle down a zipwire.

From beginners to adrenaline junkies, everybody can have day a fun experience with guidance and encouragement from instructors and knowing that you are secure in your harness.

Don’t Miss: Cycling a Unicycle Inverted !!!!!!

#40. Lifetime Lab, Cork

lifetime labLifetime Lab is a multi award winning visitor centre located at the Old Cork Waterworks offering a fascinating insight into industrial heritage and environmental issues.

Visitors will Journey through Victorian architecture and explore the age of steam, investigate our interactive exhibits and transform into environmental detectives discovering how daily choices impact our world. Lifetime Lab is suitable for all ages.

Don’t Miss: Make sure to allow time for the playground and garden overlooking the River Lee.

#41. Lough Gur Heritage Centre

Lough Gur is a magical and mysterious place that is rich in folklore along with a wealth of archaeology and history dating back to Stone Age times. The Heritage Centre provides a fascinating interpretation of the sites associated with Lough Gur.

At the Heritage Centre you will find interactive exhibitions with touch screens. There’s a fully guided tour and also audio guides and outdoor acoustic guides to help you enjoy your visit. For children there’s an activity sheet, dressing up, and a neolithic pot building section.

Don’t Miss: The Archaeology Dig where kids can try out some digging!

#42. Waterford & Suir Valley Railway

Waterford & Suir Valley RailwayThe magic of rails golden age has been brought to life in Kilmeadan on the Waterford & Suir Valley Railway. Experience the beauty of the Suir Valley from a partially opened carriage as you take in the panoramic views of the river and rolling farmland of Waterford and across the river to County Kilkenny on a 40 minute return trip and 1 hour return trips on Saturdays.

The track runs mostly along the picturesque banks of the River Suir offering a glimpse into the world famous Mount Congreve Gardens and across the river to County Kilkenny. You will also see The Magic Wood, a magical Fairy glade, where the fairies come out to play and enjoy the sunshine during the day and at night they curl up to sleep in their little houses. Sometimes they can be seen among the trees but you have to look carefully!

Don’t Miss: the Family Fun Events every Wednesday and Sunday at Kilmeadan Station.

#43. Fairy Trails, Kerry

fairy trails kerryThere are two magical fairy trails to be found in County Kerry. One in the wooded surrounds of Derrynane House, Caherdaniel, and the other in the woods of the Parknasilla Resort. Both are free and open to all visitors.

Searching for the fairy homes on the Irish Fairy Trails is a great family fun adventure. Walking through the woods you will hear laughter and excitement as children on the trails discover yet another little house! On a rainy day you will still be in the shelter of the woods, making this an all-weather, year-round, magical family fun activity!

Don’t miss: the fairy house made out of a boot!

Ulster

#44. W5, Belfast

w5 belfastwhowhatwherewhenwhy – W5 is Ireland’s award winning science and discovery centre at Odyssey in Belfast. With over 250 interactive exhibits and a changing programme of events, shows and exhibitions, W5 is a great value day out for all the family, we recommend you allow at least 2 hours for your visit.

Don’t Miss: Climbit, an unusual mixture of physical fun, exploration and art!

#45. Slieve League Cliffs, Donegal

slieve leagueAlmost 3 times higher than the Cliffs of Moher, the Slieve League Cliffs in Co. Donegal reach to a height of almost 2,000 feet making them some of the highest sea cliffs in Europe. With 2 car parks families can opt to leave their car at the lower level and walk the road to the base, or drive along the winding road to the upper parking level.

From here enjoy the view across the Atlantic to Sligo, Leitrim and Mayo. The cliffs cater for all levels of climber, with a rocky path leading you to the top.

Don’t Miss: The more adventurous can climb to one man’s pass, and discover early stone dwellings and sacred sites.

#46. Donegal Castle, Donegal

Donegal CastleDonegal Castle, Donegal Town, was built by the O’Donnell chieftain in the 15th century. The O’Donnell clan held it until until 1607, when they fled Ireland following a failed rebellion – becoming part of the so-called ‘flight of the earls’. Red Hugh O’Donnell was the leader and one of the Earls that fled to Spain after the defeat at the Battle of Kinsale.

A few years later the King granted the castle and its lands to Basil Brooke, whose descendants owned it until 1898 when it was donated to the state. It was partially restored in the 1990s. Guided tours available.

Don’t Miss: The suits of armour – see how many you can count!

#47. Cavan County Museum, Cavan

Cavan county museumThe Cavan County Museum is located at Ballyjamesduff, Co. Cavan. The museum houses a medieval dug out boat and sheela-na-gigs, galleries on folk life in the late 19th and early 20th Centuries, the great famine, Percy French & the GAA.

Don’t Miss: Coffee shop and playground at the Museum.

#48. Marble Arch Caves, Fermanagh

marble arch cavesThe Marble Arch Caves Global Geopark is located in the rugged mountainous uplands and the gentle rolling lowlands of counties Fermanagh and Cavan.

Taking in the world-famous Marble Arch Caves, the Geopark boasts some of the finest natural landscapes in Ireland and offers a window into the area’s 650 million year past.

Don’t Miss: Lough Navar Forest, located approximately 5km outside the village of Derrygonnelly, and undoubtedly one of the jewels in the Marble Arch Caves Global Geopark, it is a spectacular forest. 

#49. Giant’s Causeway, Antrim

Giants CausewayThe Giant’s Causeway provides a glimpse into the Earth’s most ancient past, and thus was designated a World Heritage Site by UNESCO. Made up of over 40,000 interlocking basalt columns, the Giant’s Causeway is the result of intense volcanic activity millions of years ago. Climb the Shepherd’s Steps and hike along the cliff-top trail to get a bird’s eye view of the beautiful causeway coast.

Don’t Miss: The award-winning visitor centre, there are also guided tours/audio guides available.

(photo credit: CavinB via photopin cc)

#50. Ulster American Folk Park, Omagh

Ulster American Folk ParkThe Ulster American Folk Park is an outdoor museum which tells the story of emigration from Ulster to America in the 18th and 19th centuries. Follow the emigrant trail, meeting an array of costumed characters on your way, as you journey from the thatched cottages of Ulster, on board a full scale emigrant sailing ship, leading to the log cabins of the American Frontier.

(photo credit: mkairishstudies via photopin cc)

Did you visit any of the 50 places we recommended? Tell us how you got on in the comments below!

Tagged under