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Fantastic Forest Parks to Visit with the Kids County Dublin

As a parent in County Dublin, finding a fun and engaging outdoor activity for you and your kids can be a challenge. Thankfully, there are several forest parks in the county that offer a wide range of activities and attractions for families to enjoy.

 

 

Whether you're looking for a leisurely stroll, a high-energy adventure, or something in between, there's a park in Dublin that's perfect for you and your family.

In this article, we'll explore some of the best forest parks in County Dublin and what makes them great destinations for family outings. We'll cover everything from hiking trails and playgrounds to picnic areas and wildlife encounters.

So, pack a picnic, grab your hiking shoes, and get ready for a fun day out with your family!

1. Phoenix Park

The Phoenix Park is the largest enclosed park in any European capital city and is home to a variety of attractions, including -

  • the Dublin Zoo,
  • Áras an Uachtaráin (the official residence of the President of Ireland), and
  • the Victorian People's Flower Gardens.

There are plenty of paths and trails for families to explore on foot or by bike, and the park also has several playgrounds and picnic areas.

Dublin Zoo

One of the most popular family-friendly activities in the Phoenix Park is visiting the Dublin Zoo. With over 400 animals on display, the zoo is a hit with kids of all ages. There are daily talks and feeding sessions, and visitors can get up close and personal with the animals in the Children's Zoo. The park also hosts regular events and activities, including nature walks, birdwatching, and treasure hunts.

2. Ticknock Forest

Located in the Dublin Mountains, Ticknock Forest offers stunning views of the city and is a popular destination for families looking to get away from the hustle and bustle of urban life. There are several hiking trails in the forest, ranging from easy strolls to more challenging hikes. The trails are well-marked, and there are plenty of spots to stop and take in the views.

For families with young children, there's a playground near the entrance to the forest, and there are also picnic areas and a café. The forest is also home to several species of birds and mammals, including red deer and foxes, so keep your eyes peeled for wildlife as you explore.

3. St. Anne's Park

St. Anne's Park is a beautiful public park located in Raheny, just a short distance from Dublin city centre. The park covers over 270 acres and features a variety of attractions, including a rose garden, a Victorian glasshouse, and a playground. There are also several walking and cycling paths throughout the park, as well as a lake and a pond.

One of the most popular attractions in St. Anne's Park is the Rose Garden. With over 4000 roses on display, the garden is a riot of colour and fragrance during the summer months. There's also a café near the rose garden, so you can enjoy a coffee or a snack while taking in the views.

4. Marlay Park

Marlay Park is a 300-acre park located in Rathfarnham, just a short drive from Dublin city centre. The park has a range of facilities and attractions, including a playground, a golf course, and several sports fields. There are also several walking and cycling paths throughout the park, and visitors can enjoy a picnic in one of the many picnic areas.

One of the most popular attractions in Marlay Park is the walled garden. The garden features a range of plants and flowers, as well as a pond and a fountain. There's also a café near the walled garden, so you can enjoy a coffee or a bite to eat while admiring the views.

5. Tymon Park

Tymon Park is a 300-acre park located in Tymon, just a short distance from Dublin city centre. The park features a range of facilities and attractions, including a playground, a lake, and several sports fields. There are also several walking and cycling paths throughout the park, and visitors can enjoy a picnic in one of the many picnic areas.

One of the most popular attractions in Tymon Park is the lake. The lake is home to a variety of fish, and visitors can go fishing with a permit. There's also a café near the lake, so you can enjoy a coffee or a bite to eat while taking in the views.

6. Santry Demesne

Santry Demesne is a 228-acre park located in Santry, just a short drive from Dublin city centre. The park features a range of facilities and attractions, including a playground, a walled garden, and several walking and cycling paths. There are also several picnic areas throughout the park.

One of the most popular attractions in Santry Demesne is the Walled Garden. The garden features a range of plants and flowers, as well as a pond and a fountain. There's also a café near the walled garden, so you can enjoy a coffee or a bite to eat while admiring the views.

7. Howth Head

Howth Head is a stunning coastal area located on the northern outskirts of Dublin. The area features a range of facilities and attractions, including a lighthouse, hiking trails, and several picnic areas. There are also several beaches in the area, including the popular Claremont Beach.

One of the most popular attractions in Howth Head is the hiking trails. The trails offer stunning views of the coastline and the city, and there are plenty of spots to stop and take in the views. There's also a café near the trailhead, so you can enjoy a coffee or a bite to eat before or after your hike.

8. Malahide Castle and Gardens

Malahide Castle and Gardens is a 12th-century castle located in the town of Malahide, just a short drive from Dublin city centre. The castle is surrounded by 260 acres of gardens, including a walled garden and several walking trails. There's also a playground near the castle, and visitors can enjoy a picnic in one of the many picnic areas.

One of the most popular attractions at Malahide Castle and Gardens is the castle tour. The tour takes visitors through the castle's many rooms and includes information about the castle's history and the families who lived there. There's also a café near the castle, so you can enjoy a coffee or a bite to eat while taking in the views.

9. Killiney Hill Park

Killiney Hill Park is a popular hiking destination located in the town of Killiney, just a short distance from Dublin city centre. The park features several hiking trails, ranging from easy strolls to more challenging hikes. There are also several picnic areas throughout the park, and visitors can enjoy stunning views of Dublin Bay and the Wicklow Mountains.

One of the most popular attractions in Killiney Hill Park is the viewing platform. The platform offers stunning views of the coastline and the city, and there are plenty of spots to stop and take in the views. There's also a café near the park entrance, so you can enjoy a coffee or a bite to eat before or after your hike.

Some other forest parks worth mentioning include:

10. Glendalough

Glendalough is a stunning natural area located in the Wicklow Mountains, just a short drive from Dublin city centre. The area features several hiking trails, ranging from easy strolls to more challenging hikes. There are also several picnic areas throughout the area, and visitors can enjoy stunning views of the lakes and mountains.

One of the most popular attractions in Glendalough is the monastic site. The site features several ruins from a 6th-century monastery, including a round tower and several churches. There's also a visitor centre near the monastic site, where visitors can learn more about the area's history and ecology.

11. Ardgillan Castle and Demesne

Ardgillan Castle and Demesne is a 200-acre park located in Balbriggan, just a short drive from Dublin city centre. The park features a range of facilities and attractions, including a playground, a walled garden, and several walking and cycling paths. There are also several picnic areas throughout the park.

One of the most popular attractions at Ardgillan Castle and Demesne is the castle tour. The tour takes visitors through the castle's many rooms and includes information about the castle's history and the families who lived there. There's also a café near the castle, so you can enjoy a coffee or a bite to eat while taking in the views.

12. Corkagh Park

Corkagh Park is a 290-acre park located in Clondalkin, just a short distance from Dublin city centre. The park features a range of facilities and attractions, including a playground, a fishing pond, and several sports fields. There are also several walking and cycling paths throughout the park, and visitors can enjoy a picnic in one of the many picnic areas.

One of the most popular attractions in Corkagh Park is the fishing pond. The pond is home to a variety of fish, and visitors can go fishing with a permit. There's also a café near the pond, so you can enjoy a coffee or a bite to eat while taking in the views.

CONCLUSION

In conclusion, County Dublin is a great destination for families looking for a fun day out in nature. With several forest parks and natural areas to choose from, there's something for everyone.

Whether you're looking for a leisurely stroll, a high-energy adventure, or something in between, these parks are sure to offer a fun and engaging experience for you and your family. So, pack your bags and head out to explore the natural beauty of County Dublin with your loved ones!