13 Fun Events for Families During Heritage Week 2023

Jill Holtz

July 18, 2023

Heritage Week 2023

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National Heritage Week takes place across Ireland from 12th-20th August 2023 with lots of free events in every county. There are plenty of family-friendly events and activities to enjoy, from bread making and castle tours to traditional games and archaeology digs – we’ve picked out a selection that look really fun!

National Heritage Week 2023 may be a time for individuals or families to uncover their personal histories for the first time. Is there a tradition such as a song or craft that has been passed down through your family or community that you are curious about? Have you become more aware of nature in your locality? Heritage exploration opportunities are endless, no matter your interest.

On Wild Child Day, The Heritage Council encourages kids and families to drop the devices, jump off the couch and get outdoors to explore the heritage and biodiversity in their locality. This year’s Wild Child Day will take place on Saturday 19th August.

Family Events at Heritage Week 2023

Dig It – Archaeology for Kids at Lough Key Forest & Activity Park

Heritage Week

Date: August 12th from 11am-3.30pm

Where: Lough Key Forest & Activity Park, Roscommon

‘Dig It’ is a free, fun, educational, hands-on archaeological experience for children of all ages (3+), where they learn why and how archaeologists do what they do. Using safe, child-friendly tools (wooden and plastic ‘trowels’ and brushes), children are invited to help archaeologist Alan Healy carry out a supervised ‘mini-excavation’ with the promise of hidden treasures, buried secrets and perhaps a surprise or two.

‘Dig It’ will appeal to any children who are interested in archaeology, curious about the past or just like digging in the garden! (Warning – children will be digging in garden peat and, like grown-up archaeologists, can get a little dirty!)

For more information, click here.

The Big Dig for Kids at Glendalough

Date: August 13th from 11am-4pm

Where: Glendalough

Join the School of Irish Archaeology in Glendalough for family fun and entertainment. Explore the archaeology of Glendalough through a simulated and controlled archaeology dig. Children have an opportunity to experience what it is like to be an archaeologist by learning how to excavate the remains of a Viking house. They will have an opportunity to dig for Viking treasures and artefacts dating back over 1,000 years and learn about our Viking ancestors through the eyes of real archaeologists!

For more information, click here.

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Athenry Walled Towns Day

Heritage Week

Date: August 13th from 1-5pm

Where: Athenry, Galway

Athenry Walled Towns Day is a free family day event curated by the Athenry Heritage Centre and Galway County Council which showcases the rich Anglo-Norman history of the best preserved medieval town in Ireland.

Experience the thrill of having a go archery, battle reenactments, medieval music, arts & crafts, food stalls, and children’s puppet shows. There are guided walks of the medieval town for adults and children to enjoy along with interactive classes and demonstrations.

Now in its 17th year, Athenry Walled Towns Day is the ideal day out for Heritage Week and is accessible by road, rail and bus.

For more information, click here.

Paint Your Own Medieval Tile

heritage week 2022

Date: August 13th and August 20th from 11am-3.30pm

Where: Old Mellifont Abbey Visitor Centre, Co Louth

Join in at Old Mellifont Abbey and paint a copy of the beautiful tiles found in the excavations. This event is always very popular and places at the painting tables are limited. When your tile has dried, you can take it with you and place it in your home or garden.

This is a family activity and all children must be accompanied by an adult.

For more information, click here.

Felting Fun with Niki Collier – Family Workshop at IMMA, Dublin

Heritage Week

Date: August 13th and 20th from 2pm-4pm

Where: IMMA, Royal Hospital Kilmainham, Dublin

Have some creative family time and discover your inner artist with Explorer at IMMA. Join Niki Collier for a Family Felting Fun workshop using local Irish wool and ancient felting techniques.

Booking required here.

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Castletown River and Nature Festival 2023, Wexford

Heritage Week 2023

Dates: August 12th from 9am-3.30pm and August 20th 1pm-3pm

Where: Castletown National School, Wexford

From bat walks to sea workshops and storytelling to art you are guaranteed plenty of family fun this Heritage Week. On Sunday 12th enjoy a fun Family Day on Clone Beach with sand art, nature searches, races and a picnic.

For more information, click here.

Ogham Trail, Clare

Heritage Week 2023

Dates: August 12th, 13th, 14th, 18th from 3-4pm

Where: Craggaunowen, Co Clare

Join Stefan on a trail to explore the ancient Irish writing tradition of Ogham. An early Iron age alphabet.

For more information, click here.

Children in Stone Age Kerry – Explore Prehistoric Archaeology, Kerry

Heritage Week

Date: August 16th at 10am-1pm and 1.30pm-4.30pm

Where: Ashe Memorial Hall, Tralee, Kerry

Step in the Stone Age with Explore Archaeology to discover Kerry’s prehistoric past. Through a hands-on archaeology workshop and craft demonstration.

This workshop is open to all ages and levels and interest!. For more information, click here.

Open Day at St. John’s Point Lightkeepers’ Houses, Donegal

Heritage Week 2023

Date: August 20th, 10am-4pm

Where: St John’s Point, Donegal

The Lightkeepers’ Houses at St John’s Point Lighthouse will be open for you to take a self guided tour and imagine life as a lighthouse keeper.

This is a free event but capacity is limited so pre-registration is required. For more information, click here.

Show and Tell Week in The Walled Garden, Strokestown Park

What's On

Date: August 14th-17th from 12-4pm daily

Where: The Walled Garden, Strokestown Park, Co Roscommon

During Heritage Week 2023 the volunteers who help maintain the walled gardens at Strokestown Park will be on hand to welcome curious visitors into their little piece of heaven! Originally created in 1740 as a large vegetable garden it now extends to 6 acres with glass houses, a pleasure garden and an exhibition space.

Afterwards, find adventure on the family-friendly woodland trail, and make music on the outdoor xylophone. Admire impressive specimens of mature Beech and Oak, planted by Henry Pakenham-Mahon over 300 years ago.

For more information, click here.

Storm the Castle Open Day at Athlone Castle

Heritage Week 2023

Date: August 16th 10.30am – 5pm

Where: Athlone Castle, Co Westmeath

Enjoy a re-enactment of a medieval town market and demonstrations of traditional skills and crafts including; herbology, cooking, needle-binding and embroidery, willow basket weaving, pole lathe turning and more.

A selection of period costumes will be available to try on and there will be traditional games for everyone to enjoy.

Free admission to visitors on the day.

For more information, click here.

Barrow Safari, Graignamanagh, Kilkenny

Family activities to do in Carlow

Date: August 20th from 2.15-3.15pm

Where: Outdoor Activity Hub, Graignamanagh, Co Kilkenny

Join Eanna Ni Lamhna for a river adventure on the beautiful river Barrow to learn more about the wildlife and biodiversity of this and the Duiske River on Water Heritage Day.

For more information, click here.

Free Family Tours at National Print Museum

heritage week 2022

Date: August 15th -18th, 2pm to 2.45pm daily

Where: National Print Museum, Dublin

The National Print Museum’s collection is unique. It is not behind glass or rope – it is an example of a living and working collection. On your tour, you are invited to witness the historic collection come to life with a series of print demonstrations. There will also be a chance to roll up your own sleeves to get inky with some mini hands-on activities.

Suitable for all ages. These are free tours.

For more information, click here.

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