Get Out and Explore Monaghan with the Kids

Caroline Kelly

July 13, 2022

Explore Monaghan Castlelaney Outdoor Adventure Centre

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Are you looking for a new adventure to have with the family? We can recommend exploring Monaghan for your next family trip. There is so much to do including; fantastic forest parks, family-friendly cycle trails, adventure centres, heritage sites and other amazing places to see.

With a superb range of places to eat and stay, it is a great choice for your next family getaway. What’s more, Monaghan is so easy to get to, just an hour’s drive from both Dublin and Belfast.

We have teamed up with Monaghan Tourism to bring you a flavour of some of the activities on offer so you can plan your family visit to explore Monaghan.

Some of the best things for families to do in Monaghan

Rossmore Forest Park

Rossmore Forest Park Monaghan

The most popular Coillte-managed park in the country, Rossmore Forest Park is a brilliant place to visit, for kids and grown-ups alike. You will find numerous walking trails, picnic spots, a coffee shop and a large playground.

Look out for the Drumlin Giants, crafted from reclaimed materials by Game of Thrones set designer, Marc Kelly, and download the free app for maps and useful nuggets of information about the park and its history as home to the Barony of Rossmore.

Glaslough Village

Explore Monaghan Glaslough Village

The chocolate-box village of Glaslough is one of the most photogenic places in Monaghan, but there is also lots for visitors to see, do and eat here.

For foodies visit, Glaslough Chocolate, Ambledown Cottage pizza, Pocono Ice Cream or enjoy afternoon tea at Castle Leslie Estate.

Visitors will also love the new sensory garden in the centre of the village, and you could throw a pot at Busy Bee Ceramics, which caters for crafters of all ages.

On the outskirts of the village, a visit to Glaslough Alpacas is a must!

Lough Muckno Leisure Park

Lough Muckno Monaghan

Get active at Lough Muckno in Castleblayney. From buggy friendly forested trails, to the purpose-built Castleblayney Outdoor Adventure Centre, which offers kayaking and SUP hire and tuition, you’ll be spoiled for choice.

The littlest visitors will enjoy Wilbert’s Enchanted Garden play park, as well as feeding the ducks at the lakeside picnic area. There is also a coffee and ice cream trailer on site.

Carrickmacross Workhouse

Explore Monaghan Carrickmacross Workhouse

Step back in time at Carrickmacross Workhouse, one of a very small handful of surviving workhouses that were built to house the poor at the time of the Great Famine.

It has been fully restored and is open to the public. The guided visitor experience is a real eye-opener, taking in the children’s dormitory and famine graves.

Explore Monaghan

Get more ideas on activities, cultural and heritage sites, places to stay and dine and festivals and events at Monaghan tourism.

Explore Monaghan with the kids

Family Cycling

Explore Monaghan Drumlin trails

Cycle through the glorious, unspoilt countryside of North Monaghan, uncovering hidden history as you go. Drumlin Trails bike hire offers e-bike and regular bike hire, as well as kids’ seats and trailers.

Local historian, Paddy McQuaid, has devised a series of trails, suitable for all fitness levels, and can provide expert guidance on the best routes to take.

We highly recommend a visit to Emy Lough where you can park up the bikes and head out on foot on the 4km looped walk, or head to the beach area for a paddle!

St Peters Tin Tabernacle

A hidden gem nestled in the village of Laragh, St. Peter’s Tin Tabernacle would not look out of place in the Swiss Alps – a curious tin church faithfully restored by the local community and now used for community events and concerts.

Be sure to pack a picnic and settle yourself at one of the picnic benches stream-side, and enjoy an amble through the beautiful countryside afterwards.

Adventures on Sliabh Beagh

Explore Monaghan Slieve Beagh

Head out to the wilds of Sliabh Beagh in North Monaghan, where Sliabh Beagh Adventures are on hand with information and advice on how to get the most from this beautiful upland bog area. They offer everything from walking trails and orienteering to bike hire, with maps, safety gear and child seats provided, as necessary.

Look out for native wildlife including the hen harrier, curlew and marsh fritillary butterfly.

Rally School Ireland

Families with a sense of adventure will enjoy tooling around at Rally School Ireland. It is one of the leading motorsports facilities in Ireland, and activities take place under the expert guidance of David Smyth and his team.

Suitable for those aged 10 years and up, activities include; an adrenaline-fueled rally, supercar and drifting experiences on the purpose-built track in the beautiful surroundings of Scotstown.

Ballybay Town Park

Explore Monaghan Ballybay Town Park

Ballybay Town Park overlooks the gorgeous Lough Major. Here you will find an excellent playground and trails suitable for scooters and smaller children learning how to ride a bike.

Grab a bite to eat from one of the food trucks, who are there during the holiday season and at weekends out of season, or pop into town for a bite to eat at Dinkin’s, an award-winning local bakery chain.

The park also boasts:

  • Picnic tables
  • Outdoor gym equipment
  • A football/basketball court

Family Friendly Hotels in Monaghan

Explore Monaghan places to stay Nuremore

There is a wide choice of accommodation for families who want to explore Monaghan at their leisure. These include guest houses, self-catering options and hotels to suit all budgets. Here are 3 great family friendly picks for you.

The 4 Seasons Hotel

A warm welcome awaits families at The 4 Seasons Hotel in Monaghan Town. Prices for a night’s stay in a Family Suite, including breakfast and access to the award-winning 4Fit Leisure Club and pool start from just €150 per family per night.

The Hillgrove Hotel

The Hillgrove Hotel, also in Monaghan Town offers:

  • Kids club facilities
  • Cinema room
  • Playground
  • Swimming Pool

Prices for a family room  start from €155, including full Irish breakfast and complimentary use of the swimming pool.

Nuremore Hotel & Country Club

The 4-star Nuremore Hotel & Country Club in Carrickmacross is the perfect base to explore all Monaghan has to offer.

Family breaks start from €199 per family for B&B, including a 2-course evening meal for the grown-ups. Prices are based on a family of four (2 adults, 2 children) sharing.

We hope you are inspired to put Monaghan on your family bucket list of places to visit and explore in Ireland.

For itineraries, activity suggestions, heritage sites, free things to do and more places to dine and stay, Monaghan Tourism has everything you need to plan the perfect trip.

Explore Monaghan with the kids

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