Posted 25.3.25

    Things to do with kids in Cork

    Things to do in Cork with kids

    There’s no shortage for fun as a family day out in the Rebel County. Here are our top things to do with kids in Cork.

    Blackrock Castle Observatory

    Known as ‘the Space for Science’, The Blackrock Castle Observatory is home to exciting, educational, interactive exhibits and activities that are based around the wonderful world of science. Visitors will learn about the universe, life on earth and life in space as well as taking a tour of the castle itself and hearing about its rich history. During the summer months, children can attend the hugely popular children’s activities in the Space Camp at the observatory.


    Perks Entertainment Centre

    Perks Entertainment Centre brings a world of kids activities to Cork, here you can enjoy laser tag, bowling, soft play, arcade games and lots more. There’s free parking, no admission costs and over 70,000 square foot of indoor entertainment suitable for all ages. Head to Perks for a fun family day out in cork whatever the weather!


    The Donkey Sanctuary

    Some 130 donkeys live at The Donkey Sanctuary, a charity-run centre that cares for neglected and abused donkeys from all over Europe. Since its opening in 1987 the sanctuary has looked after over 5,500 donkeys. Visitors are welcomed to the sanctuary to visit these kind creatures and enjoy one of the many scenic walking routes on the land.


    Toy Soldier Factory

    The Toy Soldier Factory in Macroom is home to the world’s largest Battle of Waterloo exhibit that comprises of over 15,000 hand-cast figures. There’s also an impressive Lord of the Rings model collection and workshops where you can cast and paint your very own model to take home. You can also learn how to pour metal into spin casting machines with their interactive tour.


    Blarney Castle and Gardens

    Blarney Castle and Gardens home to the famous Blarney Stone which is said to give the gift of the gab, the castle also has beautiful gardens, enchanted woodlands, a cafe and a host of mythical attractions like the wishing steps and the witch’s stone. Full of mystery and wonder, no two visits to Blarney Castle are the same.`


    Fota Wildlife Park

    Fota Wildlife Park is home to over one hundred animals from all over the world. The park’s mission is to provide animals with the highest standard of care and quality of life and so they play a vital part in the global conservation of species such as Sumatran tigers, Asiatic lions and African rhinos. The park has a daily schedule of feeding demos and wildlife talks where you can learn about the animals and the work done at the park making it the perfect educational and fun kids activity in Cork.


    West Cork Model Railway Village

    Step back in time on your family day out in cork and see life as it was in the 1940's at the West Cork Model Railway Village, Ireland’s only Model Village. The West Cork towns and Railway Line are portrayed in delightful miniature. The models and figurines are handmade on site. Enjoy a trip through the award-winning town of Clonakilty aboard the Road Train. Try out the Remote Control Boats. Facilities include indoor & outdoor play areas, Café & Gift Shop in an authentic train carriage.


    Ballyhass Lakes Adventure Centre

    Ballyhass Lakes is in no shortage of fun children’s activities. Guests can enjoy zip-lining, wakeboarding, kayaking, high ropes, low ropes, cliff climbing, raft building and a range of other thrilling activities. There is also a large inflatable water park that covers 40 metres of the local lake where kids can jump, slide and climb to their heart’s content. The kids are guaranteed to sleep well after an action-packed day at Ballyhass Lakes.


    Leisure World Churchfields

    Leisure World has three locations in Cork. Their Churchfields location has a 25-metre pool, a toddler pool and a fun children’s pool with a play zone. Kids will love their giant water slide and astroturf pitches while adults can enjoy a fully equipped gym and sauna/steam room. Leisure World welcomes one-time visitors as well as members.


    The Farm Grenagh

    The Farm Grenagh has welcomed over 100,000 visitors since it opening in 2012. The Farm spans over 40 acres and replicates what life was like in rural Ireland with its traditional farming methods and 1960’s styled village. There’s also a Tractor Ted Little Farm which has fantastic children’s activities for younger visitors like the fully motorised Tractor Ted. The Haystack Restaurant at The Farm serves everything from a traditional roast to a light sandwich. There really is something for everyone at The Farm Grenagh.


    City Shopping

    If it’s shopping you want, Cork City has a range of shopping streets with Opera Lane, Merchant’s Quay Shopping Centre, Oliver Plunkett Street, and Patrick’s Street. Mahon Point Shopping Centre has over 50 shops, a food court, and an Omniplex cinema. Food is one of Cork’s famous attractions and a visit to Cork’s English Market is a must. This 18th century covered market is a foodies paradise! Visitors have a large selection of stalls to choose from with traders selling organic and locally produced food.


    City Sights

    Visit the Shandon Bells and see the view of Cork city from the top, you can even try out bell ringing while you are there. There is also the Butter Museum close by where you can explore the history of butter making. Take a walk down the marina towards Páirc Uí Chaoimh and enjoy the atmosphere by the River Lee, popping into the Marina Market on your way or go to Fitzgerald’s Park and enjoy the wonderful gardens, museum, and playground for fun kids. Nearby you can also check out the famous “Shakey Bridge”.

    East Cork

    Fota Wildlife Park is a must-visit attraction, boasting 100 acres of parkland it is one of the leading tourism, wildlife, and conservation attractions in Ireland.

    Cobh, where you can visit the Titanic Experience which is a fun interactive experience for your family day out in Cork.

    Spike Island is another fantastic place to take a day trip and was named the top European tourist attraction at the 2017 World Travel Awards.

    West Cork

    Heading West you can visit the Blarney Castle. Explore the beautiful gardens and if you are feeling adventurous climb the tower to kiss the Blarney stone. You have Blarney Woollen Mills also on your doorstep for some shopping or a snack.

    Travel South West to Kinsale, the picturesque gourmet capital is a delight for all the family to walk around, enjoy an ice cream or stop for an alfresco lunch at the Catch of The Day food truck.

    Take a trip on the “Spirit of Kinsale” and discover the history of the area by water.

    Visit Charlesfort which has breath-taking views of Kinsale Harbour. And to complete your visit there is the Kinsale Ghost Tours, a spooky and fun experience.

    Four-Star Family Hotel in Cork

    Enjoy a family break with a stay at a Clayton Hotel in Cork. With spacious, modern family room and delicious dinning options.