What’s On for families in Ireland? Are you searching for things to do near you? Do you want to do something special at the weekend? Or have a midweek treat with the kids? We take the hard work out of entertaining the family with our pick of what’s on and things to do with kids in Ireland for the coming months, from family fun days, to festivals, to days out.
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We have listings below for an amazing mix of family and kid friendly events taking place around Ireland. They include plenty of free options, and ideas to introduce the whole family to a variety of cultural events, music events and festivals, open days, classes and much more.
With many events now taking place virtually, to help you enjoy what is on offer for you and your family to enjoy, we have included online events that children and families can enjoy alongside outdoor and socially distanced events too.
What’s On Around Ireland in October 2020
What’s On? – Online Events for Kids and Families to Attend
Online Halloween Camps
Dates: During mid-term break
We have compiled a list of online and offline Halloween Camps for you to enjoy during the mid-term break this Halloween 2020.
How to Book: Visit our Halloween Camps page and details for each camp will be there.
Dates: Saturday 3rd & Sunday 4th October 2020, 11am to evening
The Busker Fleadh, taking place ONLINE for the first time on the 3rd and 4th of October, in line with current COVID-19 safety guidelines will showcase some of the best musical talent and street performance Ireland has to offer.
The event will feature a diverse line up of bands and solo acts playing both well-known hits and original compositions. From the comfort of their own homes, viewers will have an opportunity to enjoy live performances, discover their new favourite buskers, vote for their favourite and watch as one lucky act is chosen as the winner of The Dublin Busker Fleadh!
RockJam Music School will be hosting various music workshops and activities over the weekend, suitable for all ages and musical abilities. From performance tips to specific instrument workshops, RockJam have everything budding musicians need to hone their skills.
How to Book: This event is free, supported by Dublin City Council, it will be streaming online from The Busker Fleadh Facebook page & YouTube channel, for more information visit www.buskerfleadh.ie
dlr Libraries Children’s Book Festival
Dates: Various events take place during the month of October
October is the month for the Children’s Book Festival. Enjoy some online fun from the Impossible Library as part of the Children’s Book Festival. dlr libraries have a full line up of events for children and families. Click below for further details and bookings.
dlr Libraries Online Events for Kids & Families
Dates: Storytime – Mondays & Wednesdays at 10.30am
dlr Libraries have re-opened. But for those who can’t make it to their local library, they are offering online story time on Mondays (in english) and Wednesdays (as gaeilge) at 10.30am.
How to Book: Just tune in at 10.30am or watch pre-recorded story times here.
Dates: Scéal Trail 1st one launches on Thursday 22nd October
To encourage reading in an outdoor setting, dlr Scéal Trail is an outside story walk that everyone can enjoy! The book is delivered in an exhibition format that you can follow, from beginning to end, as you walk with your family or friends. The first dlr Scéal Trail will take place outside dlr Lexicon, Dún Laoghaire.
How to Take Part: Visit the website to find out more.
Dates: Online Halloween Workshops Wednesday 28th to Friday 30th October
You can enjoy some online zoom workshops, classes and story times with the team from dlr Libraries during the Halloween mid-term break.
How to Book: Visit the website to book your place on your chosen event.
National Gallery of Ireland Online Creative Events for Children
Dates: Online access when it suits you
From making your very own camera obscura to colouring the collection, the National Gallery of Ireland have an online hub of artistic and fun activities for families of all ages to enjoy safely online .
How to Book: Visit the website to see the full children and families program.
Online Halloween Pumpkin Photo Competition, Aughnanure Castle Heritage Site, Galway
Dates: Entries must be in by Saturday October 31st
Aughnanure Castle Heritage Site in Galway always run fun events for Halloween. In the current situation, they are moving these online and are asking you to decorate, carve, draw, build! or get creative in other ways to create a pumpkin and send them in photos. All entries will be entered into a competition to win awards and an overall prize of an OPW Heritage Site Family Pass.
How to Enter: Visit the Facebook page for full details.
Heartbreak Theatre Productions at Home – Dracula Screening
Dates: From October 30th for 1 week
Heartbreak Theatre Productions travel around Ireland and the UK brining outdoor theatre performances to audience. With many 2020 shows having to be cancelled, they offer screening of some of their most well loved productions free for audiences to watch from the comfort of their own homes. During Halloween they will be screening their adaptation of Dracula! So pop the popcorn, have the blankets at the ready and sit back to enjoy!
How to Watch: Log on to watch the production. Screening is free but you are encouraged to donate to help keep Heartbreak Productions going during this time.
Bram Stoker Festival Curse Hunters
Dates: Fri 30 Oct – Mon 2 Nov online
Enjoy this interactive adventure game, playable at home anywhere in the world, delivered through your phone or tablet. Fun for all ages, although Curse Hunters aged 6-11 will love it most of all…
If you are reading this, then the prophecy has chosen you… it was a very vague prophecy, but we must obey it! As you will have already noticed, 2020 has unleashed an ancient curse upon the universe. Now it is on you (an “ADULT”) to lead a team of adventurers (“CHILD-FOLK”) to stop it. You will guide your young explorers as they create toxic elixirs in the kitchen, compose demon-wooing poetry and dress up like the slick, dimension-surfing HEROES they are. Only then shall the ancient curse be undone!
PLEASE: SAVE THE UNIVERSE! We really can’t stress enough how important it is that UNIVERSE continues to exist.
How to book: This event is FREE but there is limited capacity. Free tickets for Curse Hunters will be available online from Wednesday 21st October, first come, first served basis.
What’s On? – Outdoor Events for Children and Families to Enjoy
Guided Discover Tours & Family Quest at Birr Castle Demesne, Offaly
Dates: During Opening Hours for Family Quest & every Friday to Sunday from September 4th to October 12th for Guided Discover Tours
The popular Family Quest is open again at Birr Castle. Families of all ages can pick up their pre-booked Quest from reception on arrival and enjoy challenging each other to see who will make the most discoveries!
You can also enjoy a 60 minute guided discover tour of Birr Castle Demesne where you will discover more about the phenomenal achievements in science, photography, engineering, botany and astronomy attributed to the Parsons family who lived at Birr Castle for 400 years. The tour includes at visit to the Great Telescope of 1845 and afterwards you are free to explore the 120 acres of award winning gardens and parklands.
Family Cycle Sessions in Laois
Dates: Tuesdays in September & October from 1st September to 27th October from 6.30pm to 8pm
SVT Activity and Wellness Hub are hosting Family Cycle sessions in Vicarstown, Laois on Tuesdays. Registration from 6.30PM in the car park opposite Creans Vicarstown. Cycle begins at 7PM.
- NB NO HELMET, NO CYCLE.
- Parents please accompany and be responsible for younger children.
- Remember to bring a hi-vis jacket.
- Bicycles are available to hire from Barrow Way Bike Hire for €5.
- Bring your own hand sanitizer and disinfectant wipes.
How to Book: no booking required, more details here.
Halloween at Tayto Park, Meath
Dates & Times: 17th, 18th, 23rd to 31st October 2020, 11am to 4.30pm daily
Enjoy The Wicked Adventures at Tayto Park this midterm a fun filled interactive halloween experience for all the family to enjoy. There will be a haunted castle, freaky forest, witches lair and a mad hatter’s hut, along with treats galore!
How to Book: Check out how to book here.
Halloween Drive In Movies at Leopardstown
Dates: 24th October
Enjoy Drive In Halloween Movies at Leopardstown Movies with Retro Drive In. At 3pm will be Labyrinth and 6pm Hocus Pocus.
How to Book: Tickets can be booked on the website
The Ark Presents What Did I Miss?, Dublin
Dates: From September 27th to October 11th
As part of theatre for children at the Dublin Theatre Festival, The Ark presents What Did I Miss? as show for ages 10+ that tells the story of Kyla who is throwing a party to celebrate her graduation.
How to Book: Book early to avoid disappointment as limited tickets available in line with social distancing regulations
Leanbh Children’s Festival, Louth
Dates: 3rd to 27th October 2020
Droichead Arts Centre in association with Flogas bring you the annual Lenabh Children’s Festival for 2020. The festival for families and children has been scaled back and will adhere to all current government guidelines.
How to Book: Pre-booking is essential for all shows. Book early as there will be limited capacity.
Baboró International Arts Festival For Children, Galway
Dates: 5th to 18th October 2020
The 24th annual Baboró International Arts Festival For Children will take place online and in person this October 2020. From singing to art to live theatre to online workshops and events, there is something to entertain all ages.
How to Book: Check out the 2020 festival programme and book your events online
Seasonal Family Fun Activities at Killruddery, Wicklow
Dates: Saturday October 25th to Monday October 27th
Enjoy picking and carving your very own pumpkin from the pumpkin patch at Killruddery House and Farm.
How to Book: €5 each book online
Artisan Weekend Festivals at Horkans Garden Centre, Castlebar
Dates: Weekends in October
Following on from a series of Summer Weekend Festivals, Horkans have asked local suppliers and producers to come along every weekend in October to showcase their goods and create a fun, family friendly place for people to come along and buy, see and try the different products and services available from the local area. There will be everything from wood turners to painters and candle makers to cheese and chocolate producers!
How to Book: No booking required. Find out more here.
Spooky Nights at The Museum, Meath
Dates: Sunday October 25th to Friday October 30th 2020, 10am to 5pm
The Irish Military War Museum are hosting Spooky Halloween museum tours, a spooky maze, pumpkin picking & carving, Ireland’s largest inflatable park and much more!
How to Book: Book your tickets here.
Safari Quest, Kildare
Dates: Evenings from the October Bank Holiday Weekend 2020
Safari Quest is a new, safe, family adventure which takes place at Palmerstown House Estate in Kildare. Adventurers book a time slot online and then download the app before travelling through 5 fantastical worlds in their own car, unlocking clues along the way to help them complete their journey!
How to Book: Check out booking information online.
Free Family Trick or Treat Halloween Drive -Thru, Offaly
Date & Times: Saturday October 31st, 4pm to 7pm
The Spinning Wheel Gluten Free Bakery in Bracknagh is hosting a free family drive-thru Halloween event. Get dressed up and drive past to collect your gluten free treat.
How to Book: Book your free place here.
WolfWalkers Halloween Family Day at Butler Gallery, Kilkenny
Date & Times: Saturday, October 31st
Join the team at the Butler Gallery for a fun Halloween Family Day to celebrate WolfWalkers, The Exhibition. Come dressed in your favourite costume and meet people living in Medieval Kilkenny, just like in the WolfWalkers film! There will be workshops, crafts and pumpkin carving!
How to Book: Book your free tickets here.
Save The Date
Online ‘Dracula’s Disco’
Date & Time: Sunday November 1st from 2.30pm to 3.30pm
The Ark in conjunction with the Bram Stoker Festival are moving their annual Dracula’s Disco online this year. Suitable for ages 5+, DJ Will Softly will stream all your favourite Halloween hits. The whole family can dress up and enjoy a boogie in the comfort of your own home.
How to Book: This is a free event but you will need a ticket to attend.
Dublin Book Festival 2020, Online Events
Dates: Friday 27th November to Sunday 6th December 2020
The Dublin Book Festival has over 40 online, virtual events taking place this year. Included in the line up is a comprehensive Children & Family Programme and a Schools Programme. From story-time to book clinics and writing workshops to ask the author events, there really is something for all ages at this year’s festival.
How to Book: Many events are free but will require a ticket. Visit the website to see a full list of events and to book your favourite ones.
Have your say! Have you got an online event or a safe outdoor event happening near you? Please share them with us in the comments box below.