Heading out for a day out with the kids can end up being a costly exercise so when somewhere offers an annual pass or membership it’s worth looking at these as a way of saving money – particularly if you think you will visit a few times during the year. We have rounded up some great attractions in Ireland that offer family pass options to help save you money.
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Many of Ireland’s top attractions, and plenty of local ones, offer the option to buy a family pass or membership that is worth its weight in gold for a family day out. For most, as long you visit a handful of times in the year, it pays for itself. It also takes the pressure off trying to do it all in one day, particularly for larger attractions – knowing you can come back takes a lot of the stress out of having a picture-perfect family day trip.
So whether your family prefers action, adventure, nature or history, there are lots of options available. Take a look at some of our favourites below.
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Where Can You Get a Family Pass in Ireland?
Powerscourt Estate, Wicklow
Powerscourt Estate members enjoy unlimited entry to Powerscourt Gardens, Waterfall and River Walk with playground during normal opening hours, as well as 10% discount in Powerscourt Garden Pavilion when you present your annual membership card.
Cost: Family membership pass for the year at Powerscourt costs €165
Compared to a normal family ticket? A family ticket for 2 adults + 3 kids to visit both the Gardens and Waterfall would cost €41.
Where to buy: You can buy it online on their website.
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Nore Valley Park, Kilkenny
You can buy a season family pass* for Nore Valley Pet Farm allowing unlimited entry to the farm all season long! This is excellent value for money as a season pass only costs the equivalent of three normal entries to the farm.
*Season passes are for farm entry only, extra activities on site like tractor and trailer rides, go-karts, 3D maze, and crazy golf are not included. For the Easter Egg Hunt, farm entry is included with the season pass but an additional €4 per child is required to participate in the egg hunt. The Halloween event is fully covered by the season pass.
Sample cost: e.g. 2 adults + 3 kids (one under 2) would cost €93 plus booking fee at time of writing.
Compared to a normal family ticket? A family ticket for 2 adults + 2 kids to visit will cost €29 plus booking fee.
Where to buy: To purchase a season pass head to their website, pick the date of your first planned visit, then add the number of people you want on the pass. Bring the ticket with you and on arrival, a season pass card will be given for all future entries.
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Irish National Stud, Kildare
Season Ticket holders enjoy access to the Irish National Stud and Gardens all year round, even when the farm is closed to the public in the off-season.
They also hold exclusive member-only events where you can meet the first of the foals before anyone else, enjoy exclusive member-only children’s events throughout the year and get news and updates on your favourite foals.
Cost: €110 for two adults and up to four children
Compared to a normal family ticket? A family ticket for 2 adults + up to 4 children (aged 5-16) would be €28.
Where to buy: You can buy the family season pass on their website.
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Belvedere House Gardens and Park, Westmeath
Belvedere House offers a great value 4-Visit Family Pass Voucher. The voucher is exchangeable for a 4-Visit Family Pass on presentation at Belvedere House and Gardens. Your 4 visits must be taken before the pass expires on December 31, 2019.
NB: Card is not valid for special events e.g. Easter and Halloween Treasure Hunts, Green Santa Christmas and other Special Events.
Cost: €20 per adult and €10 per child in total for 4 visits. So, for example, 2 adults, 2 kids (aged 4-17) and 1 toddler (under 4) would cost €60 for 4 visits.
Compared to a normal family ticket? A family ticket for 2 adults and 2 kids costs €23.
Where to buy: To buy your 4 Visit Family Pass Voucher, just go online here to their secure payment facility.
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Lough Key Forest & Activity Park, Roscommon
At the moment Lough Key doesn’t offer an annual membership or season ticket but we wanted to include their car parking pass which can be purchased from the Visitor Centre for only €35, and is valid for one year from day of purchase. There are no limitations on this pass, it can be used as often as you like, so works out at fantastic value if you plan to visit regularly for picnics and activities.
You also get free parking at Lough Key when you spend €20 or more on admissions to their attractions or in the restaurant, and they do also offer combination day passes for activities to save you money.
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Brigit’s Garden, Galway
Brigit’s Garden offer annual family pass which gives:
- unlimited entry to Brigit’s Garden for 12 months (when normal charges apply)
- 5% discount in the Garden Café and Gift Shop
- 10% discount on tickets for special events
- 20% discount for guests you bring to the gardens
- 10% discount on Summer Camps for children covered by family membership
- Monthly newsletters and updates by email
Cost: A 12 month membership for 2 adults and 2 kids costs €90, while a membership for 1 adult and 2 kids costs €55.
Compared to a normal family ticket? A ticket for a family of 5 (2 Adults, 3 Children) costs €28.
Where to buy: To get your annual membership go online to their website www.brigitsgarden.ie
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Heritage Card Ireland
The Heritage Card provides for free admission to all fee-paying State-managed OPW Heritage Sites located throughout the country (with the exception of Muckross Traditional Farms, Killarney) for one year from the date of first use.
NB: at certain locations, parking facilities and ancillary services are provided by other bodies or agencies, in which case there may be a charge for the use of such services, those are not covered by the Heritage Card.
Cost: A family card is €90 (Max. 2 adults & 5 eligible children aged from 12 to 18 years). Kids under 12 go free.
Compared to a normal family ticket? Prices for family tickets vary depending on site but cost on average €20-25 euros for 2 adults and 2 children (12-17yrs).
Where to buy: The quickest and most convenient way to purchase an OPW Heritage Card is to buy it at the one of their OPW sites, some have credit card facilities. Alternatively, complete and print off the Heritage Card Application Form from their website and post it to them, allowing 28 days for receipt of cards by post. You can also order over the phone by calling 01 647 6592 (Locall number: 1850 600 601) or email [email protected]
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Imaginosity, Dublin Children’s Museum
With Family Membership to Imaginosity, Dublin Children’s Museum your family can enjoy Imaginosity’s interactive exhibits, workshops and activities, as often as you like, in one year. Benefits include:
- Unlimited admission to Imaginosity for 6 or 12 months
- Receive monthly member’s newsletter
- 10% discount in the Imaginosity Gift Shop
- Discount of 10% on birthday parties hosted at Imaginosity (Saturday & Sunday only)
- 10% discount on all seasonal camps (Summer, Easter etc) at Imaginosity
- Advance notice of any forthcoming events to facilitate priority booking
- If you renew either a 12 month or a 6 month membership for 12 months you will receive an extra month of Membership for free.
- If you introduce a friend who then becomes a member, you will receive an extra month of Membership for free (Introduce two friends and you get two extra free months added to your membership). Just make sure that your friend mentions your name when they are signing up!
- Also, Imaginosity Membership now entitles you to have the opportunity to name an alternate adult on your membership. This means that a named spouse / grandparent / childminder can visit Imaginosity in your place, with your children, at no extra cost (proof of ID will be required).
A family of 2 covers 1 adult and 1 child, a family of 3 can cover 1 adult and 2 children or 2 adults and 1 child, and so on.
Cost: 12 Month memberships start at €195 for a family of 2, going up to €600 for a family of 8. A 6 Month membership starts at €140 for a family of 2 going up to €480 for a family of 8.
Compared to a normal family ticket? 2 adults and 2 children aged 3+ would cost €32.
Where to buy: You can apply for membership by downloading and emailing the Membership Form, they then call to take credit card payment. Or you can pay by cheque or cash by downloading, completing and posting the form to our address or by calling into the museum.
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Westport House, Mayo
Season Membership at Westport House gives you:
- Unlimited use of the amusements and rides in the Pirate Adventure Park during normal opening hours.
- 25% off additional tickets for friends and family to Westport House & Pirate Adventure Park
- 10% off birthday parties in the Pirates Den indoor soft play
Additional charges apply for adventure activities, special events such as the Halloween Fest and Winter Wonderland, carnival games, some additional attractions and rides. Membership cannot be used in conjunction with any other offers or for special events in Westport House. e.g. Santa, Events, Halloween, School Tours etc.
Cost: e.g. family of 4 membership is €240
Compared to a normal family ticket? 1 Day Pirate Pass for 2 Adults & up to 2 Children costs €70.
Where to buy: you can buy online on their website www.westporthouse.ie or at Westport House itself.
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A Dublin Zoo Annual Family Pass offers lots of value, including:
- Free admission to the Zoo for 12 months (plus at least one adult / two children)
- You will also get free admission to Fota Wildlife Park in Cork for 12 months
- Free admission to four UK zoos during the 12 months – Edinburgh Zoo, Colchester Zoo, Twycross Zoo and Paignton Zoo
- A free subscription to quarterly magazine Zoo Matters
- Discounts on selected events, summer camps and educational programmes
Cost: €185 for Pass holder + 2 Adults + 2 Children or Pass holder + 1 Adult + 4 Children or Pass holder + 6 Children
Compared to a normal family ticket? A day ticket for 2 Adults + 2 Children costs €49.
Where to buy: Buy online on www.dublinzoo.ie or at the ticket office at the Zoo.
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Killruddery House, Wicklow
A 12 month Killruddery House Membership gives you:
- Access to the Gardens and selected walking paths*
- Access to the Garden Tearoom and the Walled Garden*
- 10% off many events.
Cost: There are three tiers of membership.
- Gold Killruddery Membership €100 – Five guests allowed along with the member
- Silver Killruddery Membership €80 – Three guests allowed along with the member
- Bronze Killruddery Membership €60 – One guest allowed along with the member
This is the total number of either adults or children who can visiting Killruddery without further entrance fee, the member must be one of the guests present.
Compared to a normal family ticket? A Garden + House Tour entry ticket for 2 Adults + 2 Children costs €42.
Where to buy: You can purchase a membership on their website www.killruddery.com or at the Garden Entrance.
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Greenan Maze, Wicklow
Family Season Tickets at Greenan Maze are available and valid from opening day on Sat 6th April 2019 to Sunday 29th Sept 2019, excluding Easter weekend and Halloween or The Haunted Maze.
Cost: Season Ticket for 2 adults and 2 children costs €70 (includes booking fee). Extra children only €10 each (i.e. 2 ad plus 3 ch = €80). Children 2 yrs and under are free.
Compared to a normal family ticket? A family day ticket for 2 adults and 2 children costs €28.
Where to buy: You pay online at www.greenanmaze.com by Paypal and your PayPal email receipt will be emailed to your PayPal email address after your purchase – this will suffice as your e-ticket.
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Tayto Park, Meath
There are two types of season ticket to Tayto Park. There’s an Entry only pass and an Entry+Wristbands pass (unlimited rides). Both passes offer additional discounts to holders:
- 10% off Tayto Park Food & Beverage outlets, such as The Lodge Restaurant and Scoops and Sprinkles
- 10% off Tayto Park Retail Outlets
- Discounted rates on Halloween, Christmas experience, extra events & Funfest
- Discounted rate to have your Birthday Party in Tayto Park
- €10 off your renewal if you renew within 14 days of expiry date
Tayto Park operates a “Try before you buy” policy. If you wish to visit the park and then decide to become a seasonal pass holder, they will upgrade your ticket to a Seasonal Pass within 1 month of the date of your visit. Just keep your original payment receipt and they will take price paid in (the same amount of people as the Seasonal Pass) off the price of a Seasonal Pass.
Cost: Seasonal Pass (Entry Only) for 4 people is €190, while a Seasonal Pass (Entry + Unlimited Attractions) for 4 people costs €410.
Compared to a normal family ticket? Entry Only for 4 people costs €62 off peak (Apr, Jun, Sep, Oct) or €72 peak (Jul & Aug). Entry + Unlimited Attractions for 4 people costs €126 off peak (Apr, Jun, Sep, Oct) or €146 peak (Jul & Aug)
Where to buy: Online at www.taytopark.ie (extra online discount available)
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Explorium offers an annual membership allowing two adults + two children to enter Science. Benefits include:
- Unlimited family access to Science
- 20% discount in the shop
- Priority access to special events during the year
Cost: Explorium is currently offering annual membership at the introductory price of €199* (normal price €269) until end of June 2019, T&Cs apply. *This special price applies on presentation of family ticket receipt to the value of €70. Membership is not valid for Junior or Sports.
Compared to a normal family ticket? A Family Ticket for 2 adults & 2 children costs €70.
Where to buy: Available to purchase from reception only.
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Fota Wildlife Park, Cork
Members of Fota Wildlife Park get unlimited visits to the Park, as well as:
- Fota Wildlife Park Newsletters
- 10% off all Children’s Activity Camps
- Free admission to Dublin Zoo
- One visit per year to Edinburgh Zoo, Highlands Wildlife Park & Belfast Zoo (card & receipt must be produced)
- Admission concession to Paignton Zoo, Newquay Zoo, and Living Coasts (card & receipt must be produced)
Cost: €185 per year for their Conservation Pass which allows entry for Member + 2 adults + 2 kids (3-16yrs, under 3s are free) OR Member + 1 adult + 4 kids OR Member + 6 kids. They also have a Park Pass valid for Member + 2 children for €125.
Compared to a normal family ticket? A family ticket for 2 adults + 2 children costs €49.
Where to buy: On their website www.fotawildlife.ie or at the ticket office.
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Wells House & Gardens, Wexford
Wells House offers an annual pass that is valid for one year, 7 days a week, offers one car entry, and entry to non-ticketed events and the grounds all year round.
The gardens and House are open daily, so you can take advantage of their enchanted woodland walks and adventure playground, as well as the fairy trail. Explore the stunning gardens, animal farm, picnic area and giant chess. You can also visit the falconry centre or take a house tour and indulge in a yummy lunch from Mrs. Stone’s Restaurant.
Cost: Annual passes are €98.
Compared to a normal family ticket? Entry to Wells House costs €10 per car and then for House tours it costs €8 per adult and €4 per child.
Where to buy: buy your annual pass on their website www.wellshouse.ie or at reception
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Airfield Estate, Dublin
Airfield Annual Pass Holders enjoy:
- Unlimited visits
- Free entry to Airfield’s festivals and drop in workshops
- Money off Airfield’s workshops and courses
- A discount in Overend’s Kitchen
Cost: e.g. 4 Person Pass is €170
Compared to a normal family ticket? Day ticket for 2 adults + 2 children costs €32.
Where to buy: to get the annual pass visit their website www.airfield.ie/annual-pass and fill out and submit a form.
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Secret Valley Wildlife Park, Wexford
Become a member at Secret Valley Wildlife Park and you can visit as often as you like and contribute to the running of the park. You will also be invited to any special events that might be happening, as well as receiving their newsletter.
Cost: Annual memberships cost €45 for adults and €35 for a child, so e.g. 2 adults and 2 children would cost €160.
They also offer Sponsor membership where you get to sponsor your favourite animal at the park. For this membership you will receive free entrance to the park as often as you like, a fact sheet and photo on your chosen animal, a gift certificate, and your name on the sponsor’s board. That costs €60 per adult and €50 per child.
Compared to a normal family ticket? A family ticket for 2 adults & 2 children (aged 3+) costs €35.
Where to buy: Buy membership online on their website www.secretvalley.ie.
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Irish National Heritage Park
An annual pass to the Irish National Heritage Park allows free admission to the Park for one year. The Park, Restaurant & Shop are open every day, all year round. Benefits for pass holders include:
- Free unlimited visits/admission in to the Park for 12 months
- Special discounts on events and shop purchases
- 10% off children’s birthday parties.
Cost: Family 2 adults + up to 3 children is €120 and each extra additional child €25 each.
Compared to a normal family ticket? A family ticket for 2 adults + up to 3 children (under 18) costs €30.
Where to buy: at the Park
Dingle Oceanworld Aquarium, Kerry
Yearly tickets for Dingle Oceanworld Aquarium are available to purchase, with membership valid for 12 months from date of purchase.
Cost: Family of 2 adults & up to 4 children (under 16) costs €155, under 4s go free.
Compared to a normal family ticket? An entry ticket for a family of 2 adults & up to 2 children (4-16 years) costs €47 on the door or €44 if bought in advance.
Where to buy: you can buy online on their website www.dingle-aquarium.ie or at reception. A photograph of those on the membership will be scanned on your membership card, only those on the membership are admitted to Oceanworld Aquarium.
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SEA LIFE Bray, Wicklow
There are 2 Annual Pass options available at SEA LIFE, you can get a SEA LIFE UK and Eire Annual pass for 12 months giving you entry to 10 different Sea Life locations across Ireland and the UK. Or you can buy a SEA LIFE Bray local annual pass for 12 months.
The SEA LIFE UK and Eire Annual Pass gives you:
- 12 Months unlimited free entry into 10 UK SEA LIFE centres and Sanctuaries* with exclusive discounts for Annual Pass Holders
- One FREE entry to the UK Resort Theme Parks (Chessington World of Adventures Resort, Alton Towers Resort, Thorpe Park or LEGOLAND Windsor)
- 20% off Gift Shop
- 20% off hot drinks in the cafe
- Half Price Guide Book
- €5 off entry into York and Edinburgh Dungeons
- Special events onsite for pass holders
The SEA LIFE Bray Local Annual Pass gives you
- 12 Months unlimited free entry into SEA LIFE Centre Bray
- 20% off Gift Shop
- 50% off Guide Book (On-site only)
- Special events onsite for pass holders
Cost: UK & Eire pass: Family (price per person) – 3 or more guests €44.00. So e.g. 2 adults and 2 children costs €176.
Bray local pass: Adult (15+ Years) €30.00 and Child (3-14 Years) €25.00, so e.g. 2 adults and 2 children (3-14) costs €110.
Compared to a normal family ticket? Entry for 2 adults + 2 children (3-17yrs) would cost €41
Where to buy: You can buy both of these passes online on their website www.visitsealife.com/bray and then you need to visit SEALIFE Centre at Bray with your confirmation email and the card you used to buy it. You’ll also need two passport sized photos per pass.
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Bunratty Castle & Folk Park, Clare
A 12 month family membership offers plenty, including:
- Day visit admission to Bunratty Castle and Folk Park
- 10% Discount on admission to other Shannon Heritage Attractions
- 10% Discount in the Bunratty Retail Store
- 10% Discount in all food outlets including Mr O’Regan’s Café
- Free Parking
- Priority booking options for all events with early bird rates
- Exclusive Membership events
- NB It doesn’t include Pre-Booked events
Shannon Heritage also offer Gold and Platinum Membership & Rewards family memberships which give you admission to all Shannon Heritage attractions all year round as well as other discounts and benefits.
Cost: €95 for 2 adults and up to 4 children
Compared to a normal family ticket? A family pass for 2 adults and 6 children costs €61.50
Where to buy? Buy it online on the website www.bunrattycastle.ie
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Malahide Castle and Newbridge House & Farm, Dublin
Shannon Heritage have an Annual Family Membership Pass available for 2 adults and up to 4 children that covers both these properties. The annual family membership gives you:
- Day visit admission to Malahide Castle and Gardens, including Butterfly House and Fairy Trail
- Day visit admission to Newbridge House and Farm
- 10% discount on entry to other Shannon Heritage properties
- 10% discount in Malahide Castle and Newbridge House gift shops
- 20% discount on admission for guests of members
- Monthly newsletters (please ensure box is ticked to receive communications)
- Priority booking on all events
- Free parking
Cost: Family Membership for 2 adults and up to 4 children costs €95
Compared to a normal family ticket? Malahide Castle Family Day ticket for 2 adults + 3 children costs €35 while a visit to Newbridge House and the Farm for a Family of 2 adults + 2 kids costs €30
Where to buy: You can buy this on either the Newbridge House or Malahide Castle websites.
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Do you have a family pass to any of these attractions? Or is there anywhere that has good family pass options that we should add to our list? Leave a comment below and let us know – we’d love to hear from you!