You wouldn’t expect a historic country house to also have a log flume and a climbing wall on their grounds. But Westport House combines a beautiful heritage estate with the Pirate Adventure Park, named after former resident and pirate queen Grace O'Malley. There’s a log flume ride, a swinging ship and even a mini ferris wheel. On Easter Sunday, their Treasure Hunt will have you racing around the grounds to find clues and prizes, with chocolate eggs up for grabs.
Hop aboard the Easter Express and explore the grounds of Oakfield Park in Donegal with a holiday twist. Family days running from April 7th to 10th will each feature an Easter egg hunt, train ride, puppet show, games and more. Little ones will will get to meet their favourite characters along the way, and older kids can keep busy with the estate's hedge mazes, sculpture gardens and wildlife.
The biggest adventure park in the country, Skypark is the place to be for kids with the thrill seeking gene. There’s footgolf, aeroball, quaser and archery, but the real draw comes when you strap on a harness and take to the sky.
There are over 30 aerial activities on offer, with monkey bars, zip lines, giant swings and skateboards which will see you climb, jump and whizz through the sky up to 40 feet off the ground. You must be at least 1.2m tall to take part, but there is a fun junior version for kids aged between 5 and 8.
Fota Wildlife Park celebrates 40 years in 2023, and they're marking the occasion with fun events, special workshops and opportunities to get up close with the animals through the Easter break. Stop by to feed the critter of your choice after March 17th or head to a wildlife talk between April 1st and 16th to learn more about your favourite animals. There are also interactive workshops on biodiversity and robotics for kids during the Easter break.
You might not find the actual Easter bunny in their midst, but the baby rabbits at the Clonfert Pet Farm are so cute it won’t even matter. Visit the farm for their Easter Festival and you’ll get to say hello to all the resident animals, from llamas to lemurs, meerkats to parrots. Held from April 1st to 9th, the festival includes a fun fair, treasure hunt and face painting as well as all the usual animals. There’s also a chocolate bunny for all the kids upon arrival.
The grounds of Belvedere House are great for kids, with hidden creatures in the fairy garden and extensive play areas for running around. But on April 9th and 10th, the Easter Treasure Trail will have even more to explore along the way, with goodies to win and a meet and greet with cute animals from the Wooly Farm Mobile Pet Farm. Children under 3 can attend for free, though they must be booked in along with the rest of the family.
Whether your kids want to clamber over the towers in the Adventure Play Kingdom or have a bash at ziplining in the forest, Lough Key Forest Park is a hive of adventure. But there’s also plenty that you can enjoy as a family, like the teamworking challenge of Boda Borg or the treetop canopy walk that’s suitable for all ages. The route takes you all the way through the forest and out to the Moylurg tower, where you have a great view of the lake and its islands.
With their extensive gardens and historic science centre, Birr Castle is worth a visit any time of year. On Easter Sunday and Monday, the castle grounds will host an Easter trail with an egg hunt and chance for kids to meet the Easter bunny and friends. Keep the fun going by exploring other garden trails or heading to Ireland’s largest treehouse and the connected adventure playground.
Celebrate the start of the new season with the Spring Festival at Slieve Aughty Riding Centre, where there are a huge variety of events and activities available every day from April 1st to 16th. You can take a family walk through the Enchanted Forest, explore the organic garden or meet the pot-bellied pig, Winnie. Kids over the age of five can have a ride on the horses or ponies and make a spring craft in one of the workshops. Or you can leave the craftiness to the experts and make the most of the festival’s face painters.
Celebrate spring's arrival and the Easter holidays at Brigit's Garden, which explores Celtic folklore and indigenous Irish plants through their seasonal gardens. On Easter Sunday and Monday, their Easter Egg Hunt will be broken out into two separate events for different age groups: the Mini Hunt for younger children, and the Mighty Hunt for older kids. There will be also be face painting, arts and crafts and games galore.
Kids of all ages can explore the ambling Fairy Trail at Malahide Castle and Gardens any time of year, but April 1st through 10th sees the trail transformed into an Easter adventure for little ones. Take a self-guided tour through the trail with the family and kids can use their worksheets to find all the missing pieces of their jigsaw puzzle and crack the code — and enter a raffle to win an Easter basket.
There are plenty of places for a family adventure all over the country. Check out what's on for a full list of festivals and events throughout Ireland.