TOP 20 RAINY DAY ACTIVITIES
Skip the drizzle for weather-proof fun and games this winter. Jillian Bolger saves the best visitor attractions for a rainy day...
Where: Coolruss, Tinahely, Co Wicklow
Why: Can’t go to the beach in the rain? Well, there’s always Wicklow’s indoor beach! The Activity Barn at Tinahely Farm also offers pedal car tracks, traditional games, pingpong, foosball and an animal walkwaywith donkeys, ponies, pot-bellied pigs and goats to pet and feed. With tearooms and a farm shop for stocking up on artisan treats, there’s much to engage parents too.
Details: tinahelyfarm.ie, €5 per child.
If you like that, try this: Engage curious minds with a trip to Mayo’s exceptional Museum of Country Life. The free programme includes activity sheets, games, a dress-up station and cool handling table. museum.ie/Country-Life
Where: Doagh Island, Inishowen, Co Donegal
Why: On the northern tip of the Wild Atlantic Way, Doagh Famine Village reveals the history of a Donegal community surviving through Famine times right up to the present. Original thatched dwellings, still inhabited 20 years ago, stand alongside a Presbyterian Meeting House, Hedge School and Republican Safe House, depicting the diverse history and culture of this corner of the Inishowen peninsula. Guides will keep children engaged as they learn the links from past to present.
Details: doaghfaminevillage.com, adults €9.50; children €4. If you like that, try this: Telling the story of Irish emigration and Cork’s maritime history, this Cobh Heritage Centre celebrates Queenstown’s special place in Irish history. cobhheritage.com nald’s Tower and the Bishop’s Palace. waterfordtreasures.com
Where: Loughrea, Co Galway
Why: A farm visit mightn’t seem ideal on a damp day, but Turoe Pet Farm’s 14 acres are well set up for the rain. Cue the indoor Inflatable City and Jungle Town, a large café as well as an all-weather walkway that’s both wheelchair and buggy-friendly. Once the weather clears, there’s an outdoor playground, plus resident pigs, ponies, shaggy Highland cows, llamas and donkeys.
Details: turoepetfarm.com, €40 for a family of four.
If you like that, try this: Reptiles your thing? Kilkenny is home to The National Reptile Zoo. With over 50 exhibits, you can handle snakes and meet everyone from crocodiles to chameleons. nationalreptilezoo.ie
Where: Trinity College, Dublin
Why: Dublin’s Science Gallery opens a different exhibition every few months, on everything from fake news to the end of the world to the future of humans. With a target audience of ages 15–25, it’s not foryounger kids, but perfect for bored teenagers stuck indoors on a wet day. Imaginative exhibits mix art, design, technology and science in novel and accessible ways — and there’s a tasty café onsite too. Unusually, they don’t have a permanent collection, which