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Posted on 21 Sep, 2018

Family Outing Ideas for the Weekend

Now that your children are back to school, it's important to spend some quality time with them at the weekends making memories. Ireland has lots of family activities to offer from museums to cycling trails. I have put together a list of my favourite places to visit which are all really enjoyable for every member of the family and won't break the bank either.

1.Dublin Zoo

No family day out in Dublin would be complete without a visit to Dublin Zoo in the Phoenix Park. It is a 28 hectare park of gardens, lakes and wonderful natural habitats for over 400 animals. It’s a fun filled, action packed day out for the family and a place to learn about wild animals. There are also plenty of playgrounds in between the attractions to keep the little ones entertained if the animals are having a lazy day.

Tickets for 2 adults & 2 children cost €49. You can visit the Dublin Zoo website by clicking here.

rhino3-1024x755Photo source: joe.ie

2. Natural History Museum, Dublin 

This zoological museum exhibits outstanding examples of wildlife from Ireland and the far corners of the globe, some to be seen today and others long extinct. The ground floor - known as the Irish Room - is dedicated to animals native to Ireland. The first floor houses more exotic specimens from the Mammals of the World collection.

Admission is free and you can view the National History Museum by clicking here.

National-History-Museum-850x567Photo source: museum.ie

3. Foto Wildlife Park 

Fota Wildlife Park is a 100-acre wildlife park located on Fota Island, near Carrigtwohill, County Cork, Ireland. It is a unique place where you can come face to face with free roaming animals and birds from all parts of the world. So if it’s a kangaroo that hops in front of you, or a ring-tailed lemur, which jumps down from a tree, each visit is sure to bring its own fantastic memories.

You can purchase a family ticket for €45.50. You can visit the Foto Wildlife Park website by clicking here.

Fota-Wildlife-Park-145224Photo source: expedia.com 

4. Galway Aquarium 

Located in Salthill in Galway, Ireland's largest aquarium Galway Atlantaquaria strive to ensure that a visit to the aquarium is full of wonder for visitors of all ages. The aquarium displays the world of water through many interesting displays. Families can take part in the feeding, explore the model submarine, and even hold starfish and giant spider crabs. The staff are always on hand to explain to visitors about the different species of fish. There is even a 60ft skeleton of a Fin Whale and a 5500 year old dugout canoe!

Tickets for a family of 2 adults & 2 children cost €33.

You can visit the Galway Aquarium website by clicking here.

galway-atlantaquariaPhoto source: salthill.com 

5. Lough Boora

Located in Tullamore in the heart of the midlands, Lough Boora offers lots to do as a family on a fun day out. Bring bikes, binoculars and fishing rods because you can use them all here. There’s 9 km of paved cycle paths, over 130 species of birds to spot and a fishing lake filled with Trout, Carp and Bream for anglers of all ages.  It is a great spot to get out into the countryside and quietly appreciate the natural beauty of the Ireland, as well as all the interesting sculptures throughout.

Admission is free and you can rent bikes for good value on site. You can visit their website by clicking here.

Lough-Boora-Discovery-Park-Photo source: visitoffaly.ie

6. The Great Western Greenway

Pack up your bikes and spend a family day out cycling along one of Ireland’s safest and most scenic cycle paths through the stunning Mayo countryside. The Great Western Greenway is a traffic free cycling and walking trail which follows the route of the renowned Westport to Achill railway which closed in 1937.If the entire 42 km seems a bit much for your family, consider the more manageable 11 km stretch from Westport to Newport with refreshments available in each town.

You can website the website for the greenway here.

cyclePhoto source: irishtimes.com

7. Gruffalo Trail, Belfast 

Tired of reading the book to your little ones? Why not visit the Gruffalo trail at Colin Glen Forest, Belfast ? A 20-minute walk through the forest meeting many of the characters you know from the book. The walk will also take you to an amazing 8 foot tall Gruffalo complete with knobbly knees and turned out toes!

You can click here to view a video that gives a taste of what to expect.

13016428_10156778399770099_73402141_oPhoto source: colinglen.org

 8. Titanic Belfast, Belfast, Northern Ireland

Titanic Belfast is the world's largest Titanic visitor experience, exploring the Titanic story in a fresh and insightful way. The titanic experience is made even more enjoyable with lots of special effects, dark rides, full-scale reconstructions and innovative interactive features. Explore the 9 interactive galleries of the Titanic Experience and walk the decks of the last remaining White Star vessel - SS Nomadic.

Family tickets for 2 adults & 2 children cost £45. You can view the Titanic Belfast website by clicking here.

Titanic-BelfastPhoto source: irishamerica.com