Easter provides a great opportunity to spend some time with your family before the summer break.
The weather has improved, the kids are off school and lots of businesses around Ireland plan some fantastic Easter events.
We were recently interviewed on RTE's Lifestyle Show by Taragh Loughrey-Grant to provide parents with some ideas for hings to do at Easter around Ireland.
Below are the places discussed and all relevant links.
1) Egg Hunts
The annual The Cadbury Easter Hunt for Barnardos will take place again this year in Dublin’s Merrion Square on Friday 14th April and Saturday 15th April 2017. Tickets sell out fast so book early.
Westport House & Gardens host Mayo's finest Easter Egg hunt on Easter Sunday 11:00-18:00. It promises to be an egg-cellent day out and includes all the rides in the Pirate Adventure Park. The Pirate Adventure Park is open throughout Easter from 8th April - 23rd April.
Ailwee Caves have lots of fun and games for all the family on Easter Sunday during the Ailwee 3,000 Cadbury Creme Egg Hunt.
Clonfert Pet Farm will host their annual Easter egg hunt will be taking place the 15th & 16th April. This year they are making it extra special by taking part in the fantastic Great Irish Bake for Temple street, to help raise crucial funds for the hospital.
Wooly Wards Farm Easter Events include live lambing in the maternity ward, pet baby animals in the nursery, hunt for chocolate Easter eggs, and enjoy the spectacular Animal Theatre show on the 14th, 15th, and 16th of April from 2pm to 5pm.
Easter Egg painting and an Easter Egg Hunt will take place on Easter Saturday, 15th of April 2017 at 3pm at the Atlantic Apartotel in Bundoran.
There is a Barracks Egg Hunt in the National Museum of Ireland (Decorative Arts & History)) on 13th April from 2:30-4:00pm. Can you find all the eggs hidden in the Museum's exhibitions? Follow the trail and test your knowledge to find the Museum's golden egg. Complete the trail to receive an egg-cellent edible reward! No booking required.
Check out your favourite local venue as loads and loads of centres now organise some Easter events.
A meeting at Easter. This is a Creative Ireland initiative presented by RTÉ, and is a free public event which will take place in towns and cities across Ireland, on Easter Monday with a special large-scale event in Dublin. Check out their website for details of fun family activities in your area.
3) Funderland, Cork is back in Cork but this time at a new location at Creamfields on the Tramore Road. They are open from Saturday April 1st through to Sunday 23rd and if you are looking for a fun day out for the entire family then a visit to Funderland is a must.
4) Zipit Dublin, Zipit Cork, and Zipit Roscommon are open all over Easter, including Easter Sunday, when they will have an egg hunt for the children with clues up on the circuits and plenty of eggs to be won!
5) Freedom Surf School in Tramore has a special Irish Surfing Experience over the holidays from April 10th to 23rd where you can enjoy using your cúpla focal while having fun learning to surf at Irelands Bilingual Surf School.
Just in case those April showers decide to stay around a bit longer we have some indoor ideas too.
6) Tom Duffy’s Circus has a spectacular light show, state of the art sound and expert choreography. With the glamour of elaborate hand-made costumes, glittering lights and stunning special effects, you'll have a great time at the Circus. Tom Duffy's will be in Cavan, Enniskillen, Omagh, Donegal Town and Letterkenny during the Easter holidays.
7) Your little explorers can become Junior Palaeontologists at The National Reptile Zoo during Easter by finding an egg at the indoor fossil site.The National Reptile Zoo's Lost World is also reopening in Funtasia Water Park in Drogheda during Easter.
8) The Ark in Temple Bar, Dublin is a unique, purpose-built cultural centre in the heart of Dublin's Temple Bar, where children aged 2 -12 can explore theatre, music, literature, art, film, dance and more The fantastic Jeramee, Hartleby and Oooglemore on show from April 12th – 26th 2017 for ages 3+, duration 50 mins. Three oddballs try to understand the world in this delightful piece of kids' theatre for ages three-plus
9) Escape Rooms
An escape room has been described as a physical adventure game where you are locked in a room and have to solve a series of puzzles and challenges to escape within a set time limit. There are a number of escape rooms in Ireland all with different features and age suitability.
GoQuest is an indoor, multi-challenge themed arena for older children, teenagers and adults. Their custom designed arena has 27 unique challenge rooms for you to try. You are not locked into each room but try and score points by completing a challenge within the time limit. Children as young as eight will enjoy it as part of a family team and some of the physical games are like a live version of the Cube.
Weescape Dublin & Weescape Cork actually lock you in the room and you have 60 minutes to escape by to solving puzzles, finding clues and pass tests of skill. As the game can be quite complex with some mild scary themes it is mostly enjoyed by over 12s. Great Escape Rooms in Galway and Great Escape Waterford are similar with different themed rooms to escape from.
10) National Museums
We are so lucky in Ireland to have a selection of well managed National Museums that always run family events during school holidays.
The Museum of Natural History in Dublin have a Dead Zoo Tour on the 15th April at 2:15 & 3.00pm. Where can you find an eel that swallowed a frog, a smelly pilot whale skull and giant fossil skeletons found in Irish bogs? Join a tour at the Dead Zoo to discover more about the history of the collections and the animals on display. No booking required but places are limited. Not wheelchair accessible.
In the National Museum Country Life in Mayo there are plenty of family activities and events scheduled over the Easter break starting on the 12th April from 2.30pm - 3.30pm with an Art Workshop. Did you know that the Vikings used decorated silver arms rings as money? Join the education team to learn about the hoard of silver arm rings found in Co. Mayo and find out how they were decorated. Then design and print your own Viking pattern.
On the 18th of April the National Museum Country Life in Mayo has two workshops. First at 11am-12pm is a hands-on STEM challenge brought to you by Toodlelou called Egg in the Sky. It is for children aged 2-4 (accompanied by an adult) and booking is required. This is followed by a hands-on STEM challenge for older children ages 5 - 8 years old, again brought to you by Toodlelou. It's called Amazing Flying Eggs; do you think you can build a vessel to launch an egg in flight without cracking?
Commemorate Easter 1916 with a family friendly tour of Proclaiming a Republic: The 1916 Rising exhibition at the National Museum of Ireland (Decorative Arts & History). Explore some of the highlights of the Museum's extensive Easter Week collection. Tours at 2.30pm and 3.30pm. No booking required, but places are limited and allocated on a first-come basis 15 minutes before tour starts.