Search icon

Travel + Fun

04th Jan 2014

TRAVEL: Three BIG Irish family adventures to take in 2015

Make memories they'll never forget

Katie Mythen-Lynch

With three days to fill, the hotel swimming pool will only keep your lively brood occupied for so long. The perfect weekend break should have a new experience to offer the whole family, so choose a spot with plenty to fill up those memory banks and photo albums. Here’s our pick of the most exciting Irish destinations to explore this year.

Go Wild in Westport


Voted Best Town in Ireland by the Irish Times, Westport is a hive of activity all year ‘round, with plenty of unusual activities to try out. If it’s raining, make a beeline for Westport House, once home to lady pirate Grace O’Malley, where you can explore more than 30 rooms heaving with antiques and original furniture, all of which provide an incredible glimpse into the past. Once the clouds clear, strap yourself into a giant bouncy Zorbing ball and hurtle down a hill (it’s the best laugh you’ll have had in years, we promise!) or try zip-lining before a visit to the Pirate Adventure Park, complete with thrill rides and log flume.

Take a Horse and Trap in Killarney


If a lively town surrounded by jaw-dropping scenery sounds like your kind of destination, set your sights on Killarney, where you can spend all day in the great outdoors and collect some of the most epic family photos in your album. Pack the kids into a pony and trap (bring warm clothing and rain gear) and clip-clop your way through the Gap of Dunloe while keeping an eye out for White Tailed Eagles in the surrounding hills. If four-wheel drive is more your style, Beara Outdoor Adventures can take you through terrain a bus tour could never reach in the comfort of a five-seater Land Rover Freelander.

Try Whale-Watching in Cork


Witnessing a whale break the water with your very own eyes is one of those experiences that stays with you forever and West Cork is one of the best places in Europe to catch this incredible sight for yourself. Fin, Humpback and Minke whales regularly make an appearance in the waters surrounding the Rebel County and companies such as Whale of a Time can take you right to the heart of the action. Searching from in and around Ram Head to the Old Head of Kinsale, excursions take about three or four hours and are fully guided by experts.