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Slieve Aughty Centre
The Slieve Aughty Experience is a day out rich in activities and exploration opportunities including farm animals, playgrounds, family games, self-guided walks and more. You can even stay in the centre’s on-site accommodation if you wish to make a mini break out of it. The Enchanted Forest is always very popular among the little ones as they can explore fairy homes, gnome villages, the witches’ hut and more. For children over the age of five, there is even an option of traveling to the forest on the back of a pony. The centre’s seasonal events and children’s festivals are also widely popular among families of every age. For more information see slieveaughtycentre.com
This aquarium is Ireland’s largest native species aquarium and is located on the Promenade in Salthill. Tours and fish-feeding demonstrations are on offer or you can walk around freely at your own pace. As the entry fee is for the day, you can come and go as you please and explore the aquatic utopia at your leisure. Check out the aquarium’s websites for a time schedule of fish feedings and Touch Pool tours to complete your experience. Entrance fees start at €12 for adults and €7.50 for children. Additional discounts apply for tudents and senior citizens, as well as family rates. For more information see nationalaquarium.ie.
Delphi Adventure Resort watersports
For families seeking thrills, terror and adrenaline pumping adventure, a day out or weekend away in Delphi Adventure Resort may be the choice for you. During the summer, avail of activities such as canoeing, coasteering, kayaking and surfing. They also cater for group bookings, summer activity camps and school tours. During other seasons, there are kids’ clubs and seasonal events on-site to keep young ones entertained as well. The on-site accommodation makes it an ideal spot for a mid-term getaway, while the spa facilities ensure the grown-ups have plenty of enjoyment here as well. For more information see delphiadventureresort.com. See website for family hotel packages and individual activity costs.
Eilemental Activity Park
In the heart of 50 acres of forestry lies this massively popular activity park. Featuring activities such as paintball, archery, disc golf, laser tag and orienteering, there is an ample amount of adventure to choose from. It also boasts impressive views of Lough Corrib and is located on the Wild Atlantic Way, so the parks surrounding areas should help in planning a fun-filled family day out to Galway city’s outskirts. For costs of individual activities and more information, see eilemental.com.
Loughwell Farm Park
This petting zoo is unique in that it also features a variety of other activities and entertainment which are sure to keep your little ones occupied, such as an impressive indoor play structure, a toddler-proof soft play area and an indoor car racing track. The park also features many outdoor facilities such as mini golf, zip wires, playgrounds and the very popular barrel train ride. This park prides itself on providing “a whole day of kids activities in one location”. Entrance fee for adults is €5.00 and for children is €12.00. Fee for children under the age of three is €5.00 while babies under 18 months go FREE. For more information see loughwellfarmpark.ie.
Visit the Aran Islands
The Aran Islands consist of three rocky isles off of Galway Bay and can be accessed by a quick boat ride. The biggest Island, Inis Mor, is the most visited one. Inis Meain, although the least visited island in the trio, can be viewed as a well-kept secret of Ireland as it’s beautiful limestone landscapes and guaranteed tranquil atmosphere are a massive appeal in itself. Inis Oirr, the smallest of the islands, is the most easily accessible of the three. From this island, the iconic Cliffs of Moher are clearly visible. Each island has its own natural and historical appeal and are well worth visiting on a family day out. Adult boat fares are approximately €25.00 while children’s is €13.00, with additional discounts if booked online in advance. For more information see aranislandferries.com.