Between election days, half terms, staff training and holidays, kids seem to have more and more time off school these days. Why not make the most of a sneaky day off with some of these fun kids’ activities around beautiful Ashbourne – many of them come with guaranteed fun for the adults too!!
We may as well start with the biggie – as this is top of every kid’s wishlists (and most adults’ wishlists too). Tayto Park is quite literally a legend of a day out, thanks to its headline-grabbing wooden rollercoaster and other extreme rides. There’s plenty for the little ones too, with a whole section devoted to rides for the smaller kids, as well as other attractions such as the 5D cinema, gigantic playgrounds and a small zoo. Warning – this is a full day extravaganza so get there early and bring a picnic!
The Ark Puddenhill Play Centre
More and more playcentres are realising the sense of having a range of diverse attractions to keep all siblings happy on a day out – such as The Ark Puddenhill Play Centre in Garristown, which offers a range of indoor and outdoor activities. The indoorsoft play area is suitable for kids up to the age of nine or ten. An animal petting farm is also part of the outdoor activities, so there’s plenty to keep the whole family happy – plus they do birthday parties!
The Zone Extreme Activity Centre
It can often be hard to find something for the older kids – but The Zone in Navan is perfect for all ages from seven up to 100. All activities are indoor too, which is pretty vital when you think of Ireland’s tendency to lash down rain on a day off! Activities include an indoor karting track, an archery centre, bowling and laser tag – and most are great for kids, teens and adults alike.
If karting really appeals to your kids, but they have yet to get to the hallowed age of seven, then also in Navan is Huckleberry’s Den, which has an outdoor karting track for kids aged between three and six. There’s also a soft play area, whichis suitable for kids up to nine and ten. Each session lasts 90 minutes, and there’s an onsite café with free WIFI for the adults to enjoy their peace and quiet (essential!).
Situated in nearby Dunshaughlin, Rathbeggan Lakes is a perfect day out whether you just want a quiet stroll or some excitement for the kids. Bring a picnic to make the most of a sunny day, or keep the kids happy with a selection of activities, including zip-lining from the climbing tower, paddle-boating and fishing in the lake, bungee trampolining or travelling through the park in the Rathbeggan Mini Jeeps. There’s also a Heritage Park, with many historical replicas for your kids to discover and learn.
There are plenty of open and petting farms around Co Meath, but many close for the winter season. However, some, including Causey Farm near Kells, open during the autumn and for special events. Causey also has a famous Hallowe’en event that runs for a few days in the run-up to 31stOctober, and a month-long Christmas experience, which in 2017 sold out completely. Red Mountain Open Farm opens on weekends until November, and also runs popular Hallowe’en and Christmas events.
Broadmeadow Equestrian Centre
Not surprisingly for a county known for its racing pedigree, Co Meath is awash with stables offering all types of horsey activities. Broadmeadow Equestrian Centre is located in Ashbourne, and has both indoor and outdoor facilities, as well as a coffee shop for parents to relax in while the children have their lessons. Although it’s not quite a family day out, arranging a lesson or a private lesson for your child on a day off from school is sure to be a winner – and the exercise will guarantee a tired child when it’s bedtime!
Fun Galaxy Trampoline Park
Everybody loves a trampoline, and lucky Ashbourne residents can enjoy their own state-of-the-art trampoline park at Fun Galaxy. The trampolines are suitable for everyone over the age of five – but if you’re aged between five and 18, you must have a waiver form signed by a parent or guardian. For the little ones, there’s also a soft play centre on site – and a café for the adults.
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