When it comes to planning a day out or even a couple of hours away from the house with the kids, finding the perfect activity can seem very daunting. Your family could explore some castles in and around Dublin, go on a scenic lighthouse walk, or enjoy some really great Indian food together. All plausible plans, and there are so many more things to do with kids in Dublin, trust us.
For moving at a more relaxed pace on a Sunday, Airfield Estate or Howth is a good call. And, if your little ones or teenagers prefer adrenaline-pumping plans, there are some thrilling water sports to try in the city or head to GoQuest for an array of challenges and more.
1. Airfield Estate
For one of those picture-perfect days spent with your family, make your way to Airfield Estate. This historical landmark boasts a farm, gardens, delicious food, and plenty of heritage. Daily activities include egg collection, Jersey herd milking, storytime, and meeting the farm animals. On Saturdays and Sundays, children can find a comfy spot on the front lawn (or inside the Grey barn on rainy days) for the “Teddy Bears Picnic”, they can even bring their own teddy along with them!
📍 Overend Way, Dundrum, Dublin 14
💰 Child tickets (4-17 yrs) €6.50 (0-3yrs) €0.00
2. Water Sports
Brave the cold Irish Sea waters and let the kids taste adventure while paddleboarding, kayaking, or simply going for a swim. Although where swimming is involved, it might be best to journey down to somewhere like The Forty Foot in Sandycove or Vico Baths in Dalkey for easy access and cleaner water. If you decide to take a dip in Dalkey, you can have a great bite to eat at The Corner Note Café or get some sandwiches to go from Thyme Out—a gourmet food shop.
Let the kids soak up some history and sights without having to traipse around in the city’s streets. The Dublin Discovery Boat Tour, setting sail from the Panoramic Tour with Cruise Departure Point, will take you on a 45-minute journey during which highlights will include, the Ha’Penny Bridge and Custom House. Tales of the Vikings are sure to keep them on their toes!
📍 Sean O’Casey Footbridge, Custom House Quay, Dublin 1
💰 Children (under the age of 4) complimentary
4. Phoenix Park
Phoenix Park is one of Dublin’s most beloved treasures. Originally used as a royal hunting park, it opened to the public in 1747. Today it is one of the biggest closed parks in any European capital city. Thanks to the Phoenix Park Visitor Centre, Áras an Uachtaráin, Zoological Gardens, Victorian Flower Gardens, a Biodiversity Information Centre, and the Phoenix Café and Tea Rooms, visiting the Phoenix Park is without a doubt one of the best things to do with kids in Dublin.
Spot the herd of wild fallow deer, hire bikes, bring them to the universal playground at the Phoenix Park Visitor Centre, and sip on some speciality organic coffee while they enjoy a panini or homemade dessert. What’s more, if you want to make the most of the day, Dublin Zoo is located inside the Phoenix Park.
📍 Dublin 8
5. Viking Splash
Anyone living in Dublin has definitely seen the bright yellow WW2 amphibious DUKWs driving through the streets. If not, they’ve certainly heard the hurrays and whoopees echoing around the city. The Viking Splash tour is a one-of-a-kind land and water experience. Take the kids on an fun journey to see and learn about Georgian Dublin, its cathedrals, and more ahead of driving into the Grand Canal basin and making a splash!
📍 St Stephen’s Green, North, Dublin 2
💰 Children (3-14 years) €29 – prices vary over High and Low seasons. Family tickets start at €110
Drive or take the DART to the Howth Peninsula and explore Howth village and more with the kids. Go walking along the Cliff Path Loop and take in the rugged landscape and breathtaking views. You can also go kayaking and explore the nearby caves and cliffs or take a tour with Island Ferries around the island if the little ones’ little legs aren’t up for a 6km walk. Spend some time in the picturesque fishing village and get a proper feed of quality fish and chips or head to Kono Pizza for a unique take on the Italian treat.
This activity is an oldie but a goodie for a reason. It solves all your problems because, let’s be honest, it’s hard to plan an outdoor activity in the Irish weather. Going to the cinema is generally a plan adored by all. And with the exclusive prices available using Fever’s Dublin cinema tickets, what’s not to like?
GoQuest adventure centre is extremely popular for school trips and birthday parties. The venue offers three different experiences. The GoQuest Arena & Junior challenge rooms ask you to solve the rooms. No, you’re not trying to escape—the objective is to puzzle out the challenge in hand. There are 29 unique challenges in the GoQuest Arena and 22 in the Junior room. The third and final experience is The Attic which is involves solving a terrible crime.
📍 Ballyogan Business Park, Unit 6, Ballyogan Rd, Dublin 18
💰 Arena 16s and under (€18.90)
9. The Natural History Museum
“The Dead Zoo” in Dublin is made up of four floors and exhibits Irish fauna, mammals of the world, fish, birds and reptiles, and insect shells and crustaceans. Visiting the Natural History Museum is arguably one of the best free things to do with kids in Dublin. Kids’ imaginations will be brought to life at the museum. You can also keep up-to-date with upcoming events and fun activities at the Natural History Museum on their website.
📍 Merrion St Upper, Dublin 2
💰 Admission is free
Wind down with a relaxed evening spent at an intimate Candlelight concert at St Andrew’s Parish Church or The O’Reilly Theatre. The Candlelight series invites guests 8 years or older to listen to classical takes on some of their favourite music. Kids will love performances featuring songs from films like The Wizard of Oz and Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory. From tributes to Taylor Swift to Hans Zimmer’s best works, there’s something for both the adults and the kids.
💰 Tickets start at €19