Best Places to Visit in Ireland with a Toddler


There is no doubt that Ireland is a country that is a popular destination for travelers. Many such tourists who visit this unique country are traveling with young toddlers. Luckily Ireland offers a multitude of attractions for tourists of all ages. It can be a difficult and time consuming feet to figure out what are the best locations in the Emerald Isle to travel to while bringing along your toddler. Below is are some places that are ideal for you to visit with your young child when in Ireland, they include:

●  Dublin Zoo

●  Fota Wildlife Park

●  Petting Zoos

●  Aquariums

●  Playgrounds and Parks

Dublin Zoo

What toddler doesn’t enjoy a trip to the zoo? The Dubin Zoo has a plethora of sights and activities to be enjoyed by all, toddlers are no exception. Located in Phoenix Park, Dublin Zoo offers more than a day out for the entire family to simply unwind. This popular tourist attraction provides an educational journey into the lives of wild animals, including endangered species. As a registered charity, Dublin Zoo puts its proceeds to work for the greater good of not only the animals that call the zoo home, but to enhance the experience of visitors and improve local conservation programs.

Opened in 1831, the zoo is located in the heart of Dublin City and is Ireland’s oldest and most popular family-friendly attraction, welcoming over one million patrons annually. The facility is one of the oldest zoos in the world and within recent decades has been transformed to include an array of garden and lakes and houses some 400 animals. The zoo is situated on 28 hectares of land serving as a safe environment where education and conservation of not only wildlife in Ireland and throughout the world are at the cornerstone of the organization. 

Needless to say there is almost an abundance of animals that you and your toddler can have a gawk at while at the zoo. From funny lemurs to endearing giraffes, don’t be surprised if your child can’t take their eyes off some of the creatures that inhabit the area.

In addition to the multitude of different species, Dublin Zoo also features three live feed Animal Cams where people from all over the world can observe elephants, penguins, and other creatures, so the fun doesn’t have to stop once the trip is over. Once you return home from Ireland you may be even able to watch with your toddler one of the animals that they really took to.

Fota Wildlife Park

Located east of Cork City, Fota Wildlife Park is part of the Zoological Society of Ireland and is visited by 44,000 patrons annually. Fota Wildlife Park is currently the second largest attraction in Ireland. The vision of the park is to spark the interest and understanding and conservations of the conservation of the biodiversity of our natural world.

Much like Dublin Zoo, Fota Wildlife Park is an ideal place for visitors with toddlers as any site involving animals is always a massive hit with the youngest of tourists. There are also a multitude of events geared specifically toward children making the experience for the youngest of visitors even more exciting.

Some animals at the park that you and your child will see include zebras, monkeys and kangaroos. Fota Wildlife Park prides itself on treating it’s animals with a lot of attention and making sure that they are comfortable by providing spacious surroundings for them to roam in. Many animals even successfully breed at the park, producing their own little dependents. The fact that you can see so many baby animals at the park is one of the best things that it has going for it. Additionally, it surely will be of great entertainment for your toddler who might witness the site of an adorable monkey or giraffe. The Fota Wildlife Park in all is a great choice.

Petting Zoos

Petting zoos are of course also a huge hit with youngsters, and there are quite a few throughout the Ireland. Here are just a handful of them and their best highlighted features:

Newbridge House and Farm – This site in Newbridge allows families to journey back in time to enjoy art, furniture, and stories from previous generations.

Sandy Feet Farm – This establishment offers both an indoor and outdoor petting farm so no matter what the weather may bring, patrons can still enjoy interacting with the animals. The farm is located in County Kerry in the south west of Ireland. It is described as an open farm and is surrounded by the beautiful Kerry countryside. There’s a good chance that your toddler (and probably yourself as well) will be a big fan of the cute baby goats that often inhabit the farm.

Aquariums

Aquariums are often enjoyed by tourists of all ages. The aquatic setting offers a tranquil and educational environment for the entire family. There are several throughout Ireland and make an excellent activity for the whole family, rain or shine. Also, to put it frankly, they are just a great place for your toddlers to see some weird and wonderful creatures.

Sea Life Aquarium in Bray, County Wicklow is probably one of Ireland’s top aquariums. The town of Bray is just south of Dublin and very easy to get to. So if you’re flying into Dublin this could be a good place to visit.

The Aquarium in Bray has a number of different zones dedicated to different categories of creatures you would find in the water. There is a ‘Rivers of the World’ zone, that hosts some of the most interesting fish present in rivers across the world. There is also the ‘Bay of Rays’ zone that has dozens of different ray species. Your little ones will very much be enthralled by sights they will see at the Sea Life Aquarium.

Playgrounds and Parks

There are quite a few notable parks and playgrounds throughout Ireland. They offer great activities for your children to enjoy. Parks in particular offer somewhere with little stress, so you can unwind while still having your toddler with you. Some of the top picks are as follows:

Carnfunnock County Park – This outdoor amusement park offers impressive views in addition to ample green space for children to play. This park has something for children of all ages, making it a perfect activity for the family.  Located in County Antrim in Northern Ireland it is a great place to drop by to if your on that side of the island.

Oak Park Forest Park – This park offers beautiful forest trails and views for visitors to enjoy. It truly is a peaceful setting for you to enjoy, while letting your toddler get some fresh air.

Spraoi sa Choill – Integrated into the Cratole woods, this playground is comprised of used timber. All of the equipment is eco-friendly for the slides and swings, to the climbing frames. 

Glenbower Woods – This unique playground is a bit off the beaten track but is well worth the drive as it is positioned at the entrance of the woods and is an excellent place for small children. All of the equipment is designed for younger children (under seven). This is a perfect place for toddlers to play in an environment suited for their size. 

Glenbower Woods is a gorgeous are to venture around. If you have the time consider going on a walk around it with your child. You won’t be disappointed.

Schull Town Park – Offering a fantastic view over Schull Harbor as well as the islands, this playground is situated on the edge of Schull Village. This fenced-in playground offers parents peace of mind. As an added bonus, there are also coffee and ice cream shops close by. So after your child is done playing you can stroll over across the street to pick yourself up a nice coffee or ice cream as a treat for yourself.

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