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Family Fun at Athlone

Family Fun

Rev up your sense of adventure, get out into the great outdoors or connect with nature on a fun-filled family day out…

A peaceful walk or a fun cycle? Mesolithic history or Anglo-Norman adventure? A trip into Viking territory or a Stone Age escapade? When it comes to family adventures in Athlone and the mid-Shannon, there’s a remarkable choice of fabulous things to do from outdoor experiences to rainy-day standbys.

The Old Rail Trail

Birdsong, undulating green fields, and curious cattle who gaze up occasionally from the grass – the Old Rail Trail is a delightful Greenway route that weaves through the rural heartland of Ireland connecting the towns of Athlone and Mullingar. The low-key, off-road track is quiet and very safe for families as it traces the railway track past old station houses and under bridges. For an easy family cycle, try the stretch from Athlone to Moate (around 22km return) – the Tuar Ard Coffee Shop makes a perfect refuelling place before making the trip back to Athlone. 

Dún na Sí Amenity and Heritage Park

An incredible 27 acres of parkland by the village of Moate is home to this wonderful park comprising, among other things, a heritage museum, pet farm, walking trails, tea rooms and playground. In the amenity park you’ll find lovely walks through wetland and parkland, where wild birds shelter in the reeds and artistic creations emerge from the grasses. The heritage park, meanwhile, brings visitors on a journey though Ireland’s past from ancient ring forts to traditional crafts and trades. The park is also accessible along the Old Rail Trail by bike from Athlone. 

Athlone Castle

Standing proudly on the banks of the River Shannon overlooking the flow of the mighty river, Athlone Castle is an imposing Anglo-Norman structure that was initially built to defend this strategic crossing point. Inside, there’s now a spanking interactive visitor centre that tells captivating tales of monks, kings, soldiers and generals, as well as an excellent 360-degree cinematic retelling of the Siege of Athlone.

Glendeer Pet Farm

Prepare for a cuteness overload at this gorgeous petting farm that is a haven for an array of animals including goats, sheep, emu, llama, monkeys and donkeys. Smaller children get to hold baby animals, such as puppies and guinea pigs and will also get to feed some of the farm animals. There are outdoor and indoor playgrounds, a zipline and obstacle course, maze and fairy trails.

Baysports

Come summer, Baysports amps up the fun with a massive inflatable water park filled with slide, climbs and bouncy areas. It’s a hive of excited activity with both kids and adults enjoying the space, but for those not attracted by the idea of tumbling down a massive slide into the lake, there’s pedal boating, kayaking and stand-up paddle boarding on site, too! A great destination. 

Further afield

Under an hour’s drive from Athlone and some of Ireland’s top sights and family activity parks making it an excellent base for exploring… There’s Belvedere House, boasting great summertime events, a fairy garden and woodland walks (about 40 minutes drive); there’s Lough Key Forest Park, with Ireland’s only canopy walk, a high-wire aerial forest adventure and segways (1 hour 10 minutes); and there’s Birr Castle, with its amazing science centre and beautiful gardens (45 minutes). 

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Adventure Gently, Guided Canoe Tours of Ireland's North West Waterways

Shannon & Shannon-Erne

6;#Shannon Erne Waterway;#7;#Shannon Navigation

3;#Canoeing

1;#Activity Provider
Activity Provider

Allen Centre

Curraghill Drumshanbo Co Leitrim

7;#Shannon Navigation

1;#Angling;#2;#Boating;#3;#Canoeing;#7;#Rowing;#8;#Sailing

1;#Activity Provider;#3;#Clubs & Training Centres;#4;#Equipment Hire/Rental;#6;#Information Centres;#17;#Tours & Trips

Annacarriga / Lough Derg Holiday Village

AnnaCarriga Estate, Lough Derg, Killaloe, Co. Clare

7;#Shannon Navigation

12;#Food, Drink and Accommmodation

16;#Places to Stay;#9;#Places to Eat/Drink

Arigna Mining Experience

Arigna Mining Experience, Arigna, Carrick-on-Shannon, Co. Roscommon

7;#Shannon Navigation

13;#Tour

2;#Places to Visit;#17;#Tours & Trips

Arigna Scenic Drive

Una Bhan Tourism Co-Operative, Main Street, Boyle, Co Roscommon

7;#Shannon Navigation

13;#Tour

2;#Places to Visit

Athlone Boat Club

3 retreat mews,Retreat Rd,Athone,Co Westmeath

7;#Shannon Navigation

7;#Rowing

1;#Activity Provider;#3;#Clubs & Training Centres

Athlone Castle Visitor Centre

Athlone Castle, Athlone, Co Westmeath

7;#Shannon Navigation

13;#Tour

2;#Places to Visit;#17;#Tours & Trips

Ballycuggeran Blue Flag Lakeside Beach

Environment Section, Clare County Council, Ennis, Co Clare

7;#Shannon Navigation

9;#Walking

2;#Places to Visit;#17;#Tours & Trips

Ballygreen House

Ballygreen, Garraunboy, Killaloe, Co Clare

7;#Shannon Navigation

1;#Angling;#2;#Boating;#7;#Rowing;#9;#Walking

1;#Activity Provider;#2;#Places to Visit;#16;#Places to Stay

Barracuda Boat Trips

Athlone.Co Westmeath

7;#Shannon Navigation

1;#Angling;#2;#Boating;#8;#Sailing;#9;#Walking

2;#Places to Visit;#17;#Tours & Trips

Baysports

Hodson Bay, Athlone, Co. Roscommon

7;#Shannon Navigation

6;#Power Sports;#8;#Sailing

1;#Activity Provider

Birr Outdoor Education Centre

7;#Shannon Navigation

6;#Power Sports

1;#Activity Provider;#4;#Equipment Hire/Rental
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