9 No-Spend Things to Do in South Dublin with Kids


March 31, 2023

Round Tower Clondalkin family days out in Dublin

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Dublin is a pretty amazing capital city with loads of options for days out with kids and teens. But it can be expensive too.

With the cost of everything on the rise we have teamed up with Dublin’s Outdoors to bring you ideas for budget-busting no-spend things to do in South Dublin with kids that your whole family will love.

Budget-Busting Ideas for Free Things To Do in South Dublin with Kids

From walking, cycling and activity trails to magical fairy adventures and historical sites where the kids can dress up and explore what life was like in days gone by, you’ll be amazed what you can see and do for free in South Dublin!

Here are some ideas of what’s on offer for free, all within easy reach of the city centre.

#1. Explore the Round Tower in Clondalkin

Small but mighty, the Round Tower Clondalkin has loads of free interactive activities to keep the family happy.

From dressing up to building your very own round tower to seeking out Milly the mouse who is hiding in every room of the exhibit to learning about different plants and herbs in the monastic garden, a visit combines fun with history and education.

#2. Enjoy Interactive Explorations with the South Dublin County Heritage Trail App

Discover some of the history and lesser known sights around South Dublin when you download the free interactive heritage trail app.

From an 8th century round tower, a 12th century weir, a 16th century stately home to a 17th century hunting lodge in the Dublin mountains, you will discover over a 1,000 years of Dublin’s history all in one handy app.

The app has both audio and visual guides, and can be downloaded directly to your mobile so you can plan your days out and explore at your own pace. It’s available in English, Irish, French and German.

#3. Have a Fantastical Day Searching for Fairies

Fairy Door at Corkagh Park

We all know Ireland is famous for myths and legends, but did you know you can find fairies too?

There are 3 free to visit sites in South Dublin where you can search for fairies; Corkagh Park, Tymon Park and Lucan Demesne Park. The fairy trails have been developed in conjunction with the Irish Fairy Door Company and children of all ages love them.

#4. Lose Yourself in a Book

There is always something happening at the County Library in Tallaght and the other South Dublin village libraries. From story time to a teen zone as well as a large up-to-date stock of books for all ages.

The library is free to visit and you can certainly while away a few hours with a good book or spend time reading to the kids in the children’s library. And if you want to take some books to enjoy at home, it is free to join too.

Follow them on Facebook to hear about upcoming events.

Plan Your Perfect Day Out in South Dublin

Are you looking for things to do with the kids, but really don’t want to spend money? Then Dublin’s Outdoors has some great options for you.

#5. Rathfarnham Castle & The Pearse Museum

The Pearse Museum is free to visit and Rathfarnham Castle is free to visit on the first Wednesday of the month. They are 5 minutes apart by car and while either are worth visiting independently, combining a visit to both means you can enjoy 2 museums, 2 cafés, two parks and a playground! Both locations offer good accessibility too.

#6. Orienteering at Massy’s Estate

Orienteering is a great way to get the family active with a purpose. Massy’s Estate in Glencullen offers a permanent orienteering course and nature trails that are suitable for all ages and abilities.

In addition there are waymarked trails to guide you through the atmospheric forest where you may spot deer, red squirrels, birds and other wildlife.

It is also home to The Hellfire Club, am impressive hunting lodge which dates from 1725! From here visitors can enjoy breathtaking views over Dublin city and beyond.

#7. Discover the Dublin Mountains Way

The Dublin Mountains Way is a 40km waymarked trail across the majestic Dublin mountains.

It stretches from Shankill in the east to Tallaght in the west. It is especially designed for those who are looking for more of a challenge. Visitors can download the Dublin Mountains Way map and plan their journey, which is best completed in stages rather than tackled all in one go!

#8. Discover Amazing Playgrounds & Outdoor Spaces with Activities for All Ages

There are no fewer than 12 large parks with a further 50+ community parks to explore in Dublin South. All are traffic free and offer acres of space for a fun family day out.

Whether you want to feed the ducks, see other wildlife, visit a playground, ornamental garden or check out other amenities, you will be spoiled for space and choice in any of these amazing parks.

These parks are all accessible for buggy and wheelchair users. Perhaps the best known of them is Corkagh Park where you will find a purpose built cycle track. Here you can learn to cycle in a safe environment or improve your cycling skills or even have races against other friends and family members.

#9. Explore the Waterways of South Dublin

Royal canal for instagram places in Dublin

The Liffey runs through the heart of Dublin city centre. But you can follow the course of the river from Palmerstown to Lucan where the River Liffey Valley offers tranquil walks, parks and villages to explore.

Alternatively, the The Grand Canal Greenway is just a short stroll from Clondalkin Village and you can walk or cycle or push a buggy along the banks where you might spot some of the local wildlife.

I hope we have given you some ideas for some free fun days out with the family in South Dublin. You can find loads more ideas on Dublinsoutdoors.ie including places to stay, eat and more fantastic things to do.

Free family activities in south dublin

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