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10 Summer Activities For You To Enjoy

Summer has arrived in Ireland with a bang! The weather is glorious and it looks like it will last into next week. With that in mind and the fact that Lissadell House is re-opening this Friday, we have picked ten activities that you could enjoy over the summer.

1. Lissadell House, Sligo

Lissadell House

The gardens of Lissadell House (the 18th century Alpine Garden, and the 19th century walled Kitchen Garden), the woodland walks, and the Exhibitions in the Coach House and Riding arena (including the Countess Markievich Exhibition, the Yeats’ Exhibition, and the World War I Centenary Exhibition) will be open free of charge on Friday 20th June. The House is not open this Friday.The tea rooms in the Coach House & Riding Arena will be open for light refreshments at a reasonable charge. 

2. Butler Art Gallery

Medieval Kilkenny is a beautiful city to visit with its old streets and shops that are pleasing to the eye. Kilkenny Castle has a fascinating history, lovely grounds to stroll around and beautiful rooms to view. Its Butler Art Gallery is free to visit seven days a week and is home to collections of Irish and international art.

Dublin Castle Sandcastle Displays

Sand Sculpture at Dublin Castle

Revisit your childhood by being entranced by these sandcastles. However, these are no ordinary sandcastles, there’s no sea to wash them away at high tide and there’s very few moats and turrets. Dublin Castle has another sandcastle exhibition running this year. You can watch them being created from 29th July – 4th August and they will remain for the public to view until the end of August. It’s free to view the sandcastle exhibition and wander around the courtyard. Payment is required to view other exhibitions. Full details here.

4. Birr Castle and Demense

Birr Castle is on my list to visit this summer. It is well worth a visit, I’m told. Between the gardens, the science centre, the telescope, the tea rooms, the exhibitions – there’s plenty to do there for a day out. It costs €9 per adult and it’s €7.50 if over 65.

5. Secret Gardens of Sligo

12 private gardens are opening their doors over the summer for people to visit and enjoy. They differ widely in size, style and content but they have one thing in common: their owners are passionate and are willing to share their stories and their tips with visitors. Admission is free but donations for charity are appreciated. See the Secret Gardens of Sligo website for more details.

6. National Museum of Ireland

Perfect for a wet day or even a day when it is too hot to be outside, the National Museum of Ireland really is a national treasure. Spread over 4 locations (three in Dublin and one in Mayo) , it really provides for four days out.  Choose between Country Life, Decorative Arts, Archaeology and Natural History. Admission is free.

7. Castlecomer Discovery Park

discovery park

Located 12 miles from Kilkenny, Castlecomer Discovery Park offers lots for young and old. From the playground to the variety of walks around the woods, from the mining museum to the tea rooms and the craft shops, you could easily spend a happy afternoon there. You can even fish in the two lakes too.  The walks and playground are free but the car park has a €2 fee.

8. National Heritage Week

Get involved in the national heritage week which runs from 23rd – 31st August with lots of events being planned in the run up to it too. There’s many events happening in each county so it sounds like something fun to be involved in.

9. Coole Park Galway

Home to red deer and red squirrels not to mention all the other wildlife, Coole Park offers two trails on which to meander through some of the beauties of its 1000 acre nature reserve. Perfect for a nice day out.

10. Trim Castle

When you think of Meath, you might think first of the Battle of the Boyne and yes, there are historical re-enactments of the battle which make a good day out. Trim Castle is well worth a visit. Preserved as a ruin, it has a fascinating history and it is possible to go on a tour or simply view it from the grassy bank by the river. A lovely day out for all ages, young and old.

What favourites have I missed? What is your favourite summer day out? We’d love to hear.

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