Children just love to go on a picnic, don’t they? Here are the best places around Westmeath that are just great for a picnic with the kids.
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Coosan Point near Athlone has a great playground on the shores of Lough Ree. It’s a great place to let the little ones let off some steam. It’s always hard to choose between feeding the ducks and going on the swings at Coosan Point Playground! It’s also a lovely picnic spot to stop for lunch if the weather is nice.
Mullaghmeen Forest is on the Meath border near Castlepollard – worth a trip though for its fantastic forest paths! It has a stunning 1,000 acres of forest. It’s a great place for a family day out as there are areas perfect for having picnics. There are both long and short walks depending on your level of fitness. It leads to the highest point in Westmeath (894ft). The forest is also located only 8km from Castlepollard.
Belvedere House Gardens and Park is a magnificent parkland estate on the shores of Lough Ennell, Mullingar, set in the midst of 160 acres of parkland on the lake shore. Discover the fascinating history of the family who lived there during the 18th century. See the ‘Jealous Wall’ and Gothic Arch, as well as the walled and fairy gardens. The beautiful Parkland walk is 2 miles long. Belvedere has 4 play areas for children with facilities that include a 30metre Zipline and Lakeside Swings. This is undoubtedly a brilliant place to stop and have a picnic.
Glendeer Pet Farm
If you’re taking the family out for the day, we can recommend Glendeer Pet Farm near Athlone – loads to see and do for all ages! This is an award winning 12 acre open farm with over 50 species of domestic & exotic animals & birds. Their fascinating collection includes emus, llamas, monkeys, wallabies and much more. It is an unforgettable, interactive experience where you can pet and even hold the baby animals! This is a suitable outing in any weather conditions for the whole family, with indoor & outdoor picnic & play areas.
Dún Na Sí Amenity & Heritage Park
Located in Aghanargit, Moate, just ten minutes away from Athlone, Dún na Sí Amenity and Heritage Park is the perfect place for a picnic on a sunny day. There is a series of paths, a wetland reserve, parklands, a turlough and a children’s playground. Step back in time in their Heritage Park with the Teach Ceoil, ring fort, hidden hedge school and more.
Lough Owel Park and Picnic Area
Lough Owl in Portnashangan has a small area by the shore which is perfect for a picnic. Take the family for a lovely walk along the shore. It’s a brilliant picnic spot and they have car parking available too. The wildlife there is amazing and the lake is very picturesque.
Lough Derravaragh north of Mullingar features in Irish legend as the place where the Children of Lir were turned into swans, and besides the fascinating myths attached to the place, it’s a beautiful place to stop for a picnic. There’s a small shop and café here also.
Take a look at our Summer Picnic Recipes for some inspiration for different picnic foods and pack up the picnic basket to head out for some fresh air and outdoor fun!
If you have a favourite picnic spot in Westmeath, please share it in the comments below!