Are you looking for activities for a rainy day in Carlow? Need some ideas for things to do to keep the kids occupied when it’s wet outside? Then we have lots of suggestions here to make your job a little easier!
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Big Blue Barn
The Big Blue Barn Playcentre, located in the Deerpark Business Complex on the Dublin road in Carlow is the perfect place to take the kids when the weather isn’t so nice. Great fun will be had here, especially on their 7 metre high spiral slide and 4 lane astra slide. Parents can enjoy a coffee while the kids run off some steam. They also run ‘Tumble Tots’ toddler mornings every Tuesday.
The Dome Family Entertainment Centre
Take the family bowling at the Dome Family Entertainment Centre in Graiguecullen. Boasting 12 state-of-the-art 10 pin bowling machines and one of the largest indoor kids play areas in the country, this is guaranteed fun for the whole family. They also have a new state of the art Laser Dome. It also has a fabulous diner offering breakfast, lunch and dinner with plenty of snack options for in between. All food is fresh and served daily.
Aside from their wide range of outdoor activities, Rancho Reilly’s in Graiguecullen has indoor slides and a great indoor soft play area. If the weather brightens up, there are lots of picnic tables also.
G2 Adventure Centre
G2 is a large indoor activity centre located in the Strawhall Industrial Estate with a huge variety of activities. They are home to Ireland’s fastest in-door go karting track. Other facilities include an indoor astroturf pitch where teams can compete in a game of bubble soccer, a roller skating disco rink, tag archery, indoor wall climbing and a zipline.
History & Heritage
County Carlow Military Museum
Another option is to visit County Carlow Military Museum. It is located in the old 19th century church on the grounds of St Dympnas Hospital, Athy Road, Carlow town. The museum is privately run and features a large range of artifacts relating to local, national and international conflicts, detailing the history of the World War 1, the War of Independence and much more. They have a military vehicle display on outside, a WW1 trench and 1916 memorabilia. It is open every Sunday from 2-5pm. Entry for adults costs €2.50 and children cost €1.30.
Carlow County Museum
Carlow County Museum recently reopened after an upgrade by Carlow Town Council and Carlow County Council in association with the Carlow Historical and Archaeological Society. Discover the varied history and heritage of County Carlow from the archaeological gems of Old Leighlin Cathedral and Saint Mullins to personalities such as Scientist John Tyndall, Volunteer Kevin Barry and Raconteur Val Vousden. Make sure to check out the original gallows trapdoor from Carlow Gaol, the 340 million year old fossilised squid and even the the last cigarette smoked by Kevin Barry, an 18 year old medical student who was executed for his role in the Irish War of Independence. They have a Carlow County Museum Detective Quiz for kids to do while exploring the museum.
Catch a Movie!
Who doesn’t love popcorn and a good movie?
- Take in a movie at the Carlow Omniplex. There is a kids’ club with discounted rates at 12 noon on Saturdays and Sundays. This generally runs on the school holidays too.
- The IMC Centre Carlow at the Fairgreen Shopping Centre on Barrack Street also has a regular kids club.
Alternatively, why enjoy all the fun of the cinema, without ever leaving home, by creating your own home cinema experience! Get the kids involved in setting up the cinema, arranging seating, making tickets etc. then sit back and relax!
Related: Make Your Own Home Cinema
Visit your local library. All libraries in the county have a junior section. Great for a rainy afternoon – go and read with the children or take part in many of the free events and activities that take place. Check out library opening times before you make plans.
Or head to your local bookstore and treat the kids to a new book. Spend time browsing for that special book and go home and read it together.
Go swimming at Graiguecullen Swimming Pool and Leisure Centre. The Swimming Pool in Graiguecullen is a modern facility situated in the historic building which was formally the old National School. The facilities include a 25m deck-level Heated Swimming Pool, a spacious Toddler Pool and viewing area for parents, Sauna, Steam Room and Coffee Dock. Open all year round, patrons can attend Public Sessions, Aqua Aerobics, Individual and Group Lessons.
Visual Centre for Contemporary Art
On a rainy day, the Visual Centre for Contemporary Art in Graigue, Carlow is a great idea for a family outing. It is one of Ireland’s leading contemporary art spaces and is very child friendly with brilliant activity sheets for kids available free at reception, with facts on the artists and interesting questions for them to have a think about. There are always lots of seasonal activities for families, so keep an eye out for their family workshops, for example Parent and Toddler art classes every Tuesday and regular plays for under 12’s. They also have a drop-in Make and Do table where children can draw and make to their heart’s content.
Sometimes, you have just got to get out and get wet!
Put on the raingear and wellies and go for a walk in the rain. Most kids love splashing in puddles, and sometimes it’s a great way to release pent-up energy from being cooped up inside. Here’s our Top Ten Things to do Outside in the Rain for some ideas!
Warm up afterwards with a hot bath/shower, dry clothes and hot chocolate. Then, why not pull out a board-game or snuggle up on the couch with a movie – a perfect end to a wet day!