Dublin with kids

A city break to Dublin with kids is definitely a fun idea. There are enough activities to do with the family in Ireland’s capital to keep you well entertained for at least a few days. Therefore, its short flight time and cheap airfare make it a destination increasingly visited by families with kids. We visited this cozy city ourselves and list the best activities in Dublin with kids.

Dublin with kids

Organized trip Dublin

You can obviously arrange a trip to Dublin with kids just fine on your own, but sometimes it can be easy to book a package tour. Here you book the flight including hotel right away. You can then often choose which airport you want to fly from in the Netherlands, Germany or Belgium. For more information on a package tour to Dublin, take a look here.

Dublin with kids

Dublin with kids: fun museums

You can go to some great museums in Dublin with kids. We list the best museums below.

#1 Dublinia: Located right in the center of Dublin, this museum is all about the Vikings. Housed in an old cathedral, the museum has three floors, each with its own theme. The three themes are the Viking Age, the Middle Ages and archaeology. In the Vikings department, entire streets have been recreated and staff members walk around dressed up. This gives you an impression of what things were like at that time.

Also in the part of the Middle Ages, entire streets have been recreated and you get an impression of what it must have been like. Kids can also dress up, throw tomatoes at a doll in a scaffold and also weigh all kinds of things on scales. The last floor focuses on what has been excavated in Dublin, such as human skulls. For families, they have special discounted family tickets at this museum. Click on the blue link in the text for more information on opening hours, admission prices and the museum.

#2 Natural History Museum: This museum is also located in the city center and its great advantage is that it is free to visit. You will find a whole collection of stuffed animals spread over two floors. The museum used to be called dead zoo because of the many stuffed animals. We always enjoy being able to see all these beautiful animals up close, and since admission is free, spending an hour walking through this museum is no punishment.

#3 National Wax Museum Plus: This museum was set up two hundred years ago by the world-famous Madame Tussaud. It is one of Dublin’s most popular attractions among tourists, and the front of the museum already looks spectacular with a giant holding a piece of wall.

You have some sections in the museum that are interesting and some sections that are less interesting (on Irish writers and on the History of Ireland). Of interest to kids are the Chamber of Horrors, Wax World and Music & Entertainment sections. The Science & Discovery section is also fun for kids, as they can interactively do all kinds of experiments here. Kids can also get their hand waxed (for a fee) at the museum’s shop.

#4 Imaginosity Childrens Museum: this museum is located in the south of the city and you are about forty minutes by public transportation to get to this museum. This museum is a great playground for kids up to about seven/eight years old. Kids can play with all kinds of things here and reenact all kinds of professions.

For example, there is a large kitchen where kids can play, there is a kind of garage with a car, there are all kinds of things to play doctor, in short for younger kids a play paradise. However, there is a time limit of up to two hours that the kids are allowed to play. So for this activity, count on half a day spent with the entrance plus transportation there.

Dublin with kids
Dublin with kids

Dublin with kids: exploring the city

There are several ways you can explore Dublin city with kids. We list some great options.

#5 Hop on Hop off bus: as in most major cities around the world, Dublin has Hop on Hop off buses. The buses run a route along various points of interest in the city and stop at all these stops. You can get off at any stop and also get back on during a certain period of time (for example, 24 or 48 hours). This is a quick way to see the city, but of course with an entire family this can be an expensive activity.

#6 By bike: another way to explore Dublin with kids is with the organization BajaBikes. This organization organizes 2.5-hour bike tours accompanied by a Dutch guide, taking you past the city’s biggest attractions. For kids, they also have bikes, so this tour can be a fun activity families with kids. Just keep in mind that it rains quite often in Ireland, so it can be a very wet bike tour.

#7 Viking Splash Tours: another fun way to explore Dublin with the family is with this Vikings tour. You go in a kind of big bus, which can also sail, and everyone puts on a big Viking helmet. Here you will also ride past various sights in the city and a guide will tell you all kinds of stories about the city along the way. Of course, the most fun moment for kids is when the bus is driven into the water and it continues as a boat.

Dublin with kids
Dublin with kids

Dublin with kids #8: day at the beach

You might not think of it right away when you think of the city of Dublin, but you can also easily spend a day at the beach here during the summer months. In fact, Dublin is located by the water, so on the rare occasions when the weather is nice in the city, you can spend a day at the beach with the kids.

Sandymouth beach: this is one of the beaches closest to the city and you can get to the beach by public transport in about half an hour. Sandymouth beach is a large beach with plenty of room for kids to play. It is quite a rough beach with all kinds of large rocks on the beach, which also causes all kinds of pools to form near the rocks. Especially on a hot summer day, it is a great place to spend half a day cooling off during your city break to Dublin with kids.

Claremont beach: this beach is located on the Howth peninsula and can be reached in just under an hour by public transportation. This is also a pretty rough beach and the wind can blow pretty hard here. Near the beach you have several restaurants and cafes for a bite to eat and a drink.

Dollymount beach: this is the third beach that can be reached within the hour by public transport. Kids can look for shells here, and with a little luck, you can also see seals at this beach.

Dublin with kids
Dublin with kids

Dublin with kids: other activities

In addition to the eight activities described above that you can do in Dublin, there are a number of other fun activities. We briefly name them below.

#9 St Stephans Green Park: if you are looking for a nice city park in Dublin with the family, this is a nice option. A beautiful park with a large lake in the park and also a very nice playground with several swings and playground equipment. This park is near the main shopping street Grafton Street, so you can easily combine these two things.

#10 Dublin Zoo: You can also spend a day spotting animals in Dublin with your kids. Dublin Zoo is located in Phoenix Park which is one of the largest city parks in Europe. You will find in this zoo most of the large African animals such as the elephant, the lion. the zebra, the rhino, the giraffe and the gorilla. Count on needing at least half a day to see this zoo properly.

#11 Aquazone Dublin: You also have a nice indoor pool in Dublin for when the weather is not so good for a day in the city. Aquazone is about three quarters of an hour from downtown by public transportation and has a pirate ship for small kids inside, a wave pool and some fun slides for kids.

Dublin with kids: CAR RENTAL

If you are going to do the activities described above in Dublin with kids, then a car will come in handy. Basically, there is public transportation in the city, but we still really like having our own car. We actually find the cars from Sunny Cars are always top notch!

You actually have all costs included in the price here and are insured for most things (including your deductible). We have had problems with this in the past, because all kinds of costs are added at the destination. With Sunny Cars, you know that’s not the case and that’s a nice feeling. You can additionally cancel the car 1 hour before your reservation free of charge. You can also rent a car in Dublin with kids from Sunny Cars.

Check out the different rental cars here.

Dublin with kids: dublin pass

If you plan to do a lot of activities in Dublin with your family then the Dublin Pass can be advantageous for your family. You can purchase the pass for one to five days and then have free admission to various attractions with the pass. The pass is certainly not cheap and you have to do quite a few attractions in a day to be inexpensive. Check the Dublin Pass website to see which attractions you all want to visit and then see if the pass is advantageous for your family.

Where to stay in Dublin with kids?

You can stay in Dublin with kids just fine. We list some well-reviewed options in different price ranges located in the city center.

Budget hotel: Harcourt Hotel

Mid-range hotel: Academy Plaza Hotel

Luxury hotel: Maldron Hotel Smithfield

For a list of all Dublin hotels with kids, take a look here.

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