10 Free and Fabulous Events For Families during Heritage Week

Jill Holtz

July 16, 2019

heritage week

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Heritage Week takes place across Ireland during 17th-25th August 2019 with literally tons of free events in every county. We’ve picked out a selection of events that look fun for families. Here are 10 Free and Fabulous Events For Families during Heritage Week.

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There are hundreds of events taking place during Heritage Week 2019 and you can visit the Heritage Week website and search by county to see what’s on near you. We’ve just picked out 10 fun events that are all free for families.

#1. Bug Hunt, Wexford

Beetles Bugs and Bumblebees National Museum of Ireland June

On Tuesday 20th August there’s Bug Hunting in the Raven Woods at Wexford Wildfowl Reserve 11am – 12.30pm. Search for and identify bugs that live on land and in the water. All equipment will be provided, just bring yourselves! Park in the Raven car park and follow the signs down into the woods.

Other fun events for Heritage Week at Wexford Wildfowl Reserve:

  • Sunday 18th August  Butterfly Walk  2pm – 4pm
  • Thursday 22nd August Nature Scavenger Hunt in the Raven Woods 11am – 12.30pm
  • Saturday 24th August Bat Talk and Walk 8.30pm – 11.30pm

You might also enjoy reading Visit Heritage Ireland Sites for Free on OPW Free Days

#2. Cork Heritage Open Day

lifetime lab old cork waterworks

As a special event for Heritage Week the team of Old Cork Waterworks will provide guided tours of the impressive Victorian Architecture, and the steam engine and boiler rooms. Saturday 17 August, 11am – 3:30pm.

Discover a lesser told story, a behind-the-scenes secret: yet an essential ingredient to the prosperity of Cork City’s rapidly growing population in Victorian times. Arriving at the Old Cork Waterworks on the banks of the River Lee, you find handsome red sandstone and limestone buildings and a towering chimney: monuments to that same Victorian civic pride that left architectural legacies of Cork City.

You might also enjoy reading 100 Free Fun Things With Kids in Ireland

#3. Drumboe Donegal’s Favourite Engine


On Thursday 22 August, 7pm – 9pm, at Donegal Heritage Railway Centre you can meet Drumboe, Donegal’s favourite engine.

Come and hear about the history of Drumboe and other Donegal steam engines that operated here. There will also be an update on the planned restoration of Drumboe and its return to Donegal Station.

#4. Build a Bug Hotel, Roscommon

Bug Hotel eco activities for kids

There is a Build a Bug Hotel Kids Workshop on Tuesday 20 August, 3:15pm – 4pm at The Green, near The Spinney, Abbeytown, Roscommon Town.

Come and join Martina Butler on The Green and learn how to build a cosy home for insects using natural materials to attract friendly bugs to gardens helping flowers to bloom and fruit and veg to grow!

This is an outdoor event so please dress for the weather. Children must be supervised by an adult at all times.

#5. Games on the Square, Dublin

games on the square

Games on the Square takes place on Sunday 18 August, 2pm – 4:30pm at National Museum of Ireland – Decorative Arts & History, Clarke Square, Collins Barracks.

Join in the fun at Games on the Square where Clarke Square will be turned into a playground, featuring art activities, outdoor and indoor games.

Inspired by the public art project Stories Between Us.

You might also enjoy reading National Museum of Ireland Fun Family Events

#6. Guided Tour of Griston Bog, Limerick

griston bog

There is a Guided Tour of Griston Bog on Tuesday 21 August, 10:30am – 12pm, at Ballyhoura Outdoor Classroom. Glennahaglish, Ballylanders, Co. Limerick.

Griston Bog in the lovely Ballyhoura Country offers a lovely boardwalk and guided tour around the bog. Learn about biodiversity, history, heritage and more in a fun, and informal environment.

During the tour, visitors can enjoy the history and geography of how the bog has evolved from Ice Age to present day. There is also an invaluable insight into how ways of life have changed over thousands of years. BOOKING REQUIRED

#7. Athenry Walled Towns Day, Galway

athenry walled town day

Athenry Walled Towns Day takes place Sunday 18 August, 1pm – 5pm at Athenry Park, Athenry Heritage Centre, Co. Galway.

Athenry Walled Towns Day is a free family fun day that celebrates the rich medieval history of Athenry. The programme of events illustrates the pastimes & past times of Anglo-Norman life.

Enjoy a free family fun day in the medieval town of Athenry and experience a world of children’s craft activities, battle reenactments, have a go archery, medieval circus skills, music, craft exhibits, displays of weaponry and living history presentations. The programme of events is suitable for all ages and reflects the rich history of the medieval town. The event will be held in Athenry park and the Athenry Heritage Centre.

#8. Queen Maeve and the Honey Bees, Cork

queen maeve and the honey bees

Queen Maeve & the Honey Bees is especially for littler visitors who will imagine they are busy honeybees buzzing around the Victorian Working Gardens at Fota House! Explore the magical world of honey bees on this children’s garden tour. Follow the hidden bee trail and find out about the Fota bees. At the end of the tour you may even get to taste some yummy honey! Tours run Monday 19th to Friday 23rd August at 11am. Places are limited so book now by calling Tanya at 021 4815543.

There is lots of other fun for families at Heritage Week at Fota House. This year’s Heritage Week theme is Pastimes Past Times.

  • Pastimes at Fota Exhibition – Travel back in time and enjoy the pastimes of previous residents of Fota House. This fascinating exhibition explores the hobbies, games and field sports enjoyed by the gentry and their staff. The exhibition runs in Fota House from 10am to 5pm from Sunday 17th August to Sunday 25th August. Admission Free – no need to book – just walk in !
  • Cork Heritage Open Day Saturday 17th August – Come along on Saturday 17th August at 12.30, 2pm or 3.30 for a free guided tour of Fota House OR at 11am and 1pm for a tour of our Victorian Working Garden. Spaces are limited so booking is essential. Call Tanya at 021 4815543 to secure your place.
  • Thursday 22nd August Workshops and demos with Sonia Caldwell on all things to do with straw and rush craft with the chance to try out different techniques. 11.00 to 12.30. Workshop Weaving with rushes Age 6 and up. 1.30 to 3.30 Workshop Straw crafts make a harvest bow. Ages 8 and up. 3:30 to 5pm. Talk and demonstration by Sonia on all things to do with straw and rush craft and a chance to try out different techniques – all ages welcome. To book one of Sonia’s demos please text or email 087 2998218 or [email protected]

#9. Kids Go Free, Kerry County Museum

kids go free kerry county museum

Kids Go Free at Kerry County Museum, Co. Kerry during Heritage Week 17 – 25 August, 9:30am – 5:30pm. From digging up skeletons and playing Viking chess to dressing up in medieval costume, Kerry County Museum offers plenty of hands-on family activities to explore history and archaeology in a fun way.

Other activities include a hands-on Discovery Trail through the Main Museum Gallery and strolling through the streets of medieval Tralee complete with the sounds and smells.

#10. Vintage Game Day, Offaly

vintage game day

Join Cormac Bowell for an amazing day of vintage games at Tullamore Library County Offaly on Tuesday 20th August 10am-6pm. Children can investigate and play a whole range of games that were popular with children in past times.

Have a go at playing a huge range of traditional table-top games from throughout history at this internationally acclaimed and award winning Very Interactive Nostalgic Toy And Game Exhibition. Parents and Grandparents are welcome to play too!

These are just 10 events that we picked out, there are literally so many more family events taking place, most of them free, so be sure to check the Heritage Week website for more ideas.

Over to you now. Are you planning to go to any Heritage Week 2019 events? Tell us in the comments below. 

 10 Free and Fabulous Events For Families during Heritage Week

Like this? Share it with your network!

Like this? Share it with your network!

Published On: July 16th, 2019 / Categories: Ireland, Things To Do / Last Updated: April 28th, 2021 / Tags: , , /

About the Author: Jill Holtz

Jill is one of the co-founders of Mykidstime and a mum of 2 girls

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