Book a family forest break

Blogs, Family, Accommodation

Posted by Sarah

Published February 23, 2017

With play parks, picnic spots and endless places to play hide and seek, take the kids on that camping trip you’ve always promised. You’ll have everything to keep them entertained on your doorstep, and these forest and country parks are perfect for a budget family forest break.

Forest breaks for families

Stepping stones at Tollymore Forest Park, Co. Down

Castlewellan Forest Park, Co Down

There is enough adventure in Castlewellan Forest Park to completely fill a weekend away. The walks and mountain bike trails around the lake will give kids of all ages the freedom to explore.

As well as providing mountain bike hire (with trailers for the wee ones) Life Adventure Centre also offers canoe and kayak hire so you can explore Castlewellan Lake. If they’re still not tired out send the kids to make their way through the impressive hedge Peace Maze and explore the Animal Wood Natural Play area.

Caravanning and camping available onsite.

Kilbroney Forest Park, Co. Down

Kilbroney Forest Park features tennis courts, a children’s play area, an arboretum, barbeque and picnic areas, as well as a café. 

The kids will feel a sense of accomplishment after the short but steep climb to Cloughmore Stone with spectacular views over Carlingford Lough, one of three waymarked trails.

Teenagers confident on mountain bikes can take on the purpose built red trail, and the little ones can discover the Narnia Walking Trail exploring the stories, myths and legends of the area that inspired C.S. Lewis to write his famous books.

Caravanning and camping available onsite. For those that want a little more luxury, just a 10 minute drive away you’ll find East Coast Adventure Glamping.

Tollymore Forest Park, Co. Down

Covering almost 630 hectares at the foot of the Mourne Mountains, explore the walking trails in Tollymore Forest Park along the Shimna River passing rocky outcrops, bridges, grottos, caves and the oldest arboretum tree in Ireland.

Admire the views and enjoy a picnic at the Deer tables as the kids climb the ‘Big Deer’ featuring a castle turret, tower and tree all connected through a series of rope-bridges, tunnels, spider webs, basket swings and slides. The park is near the seaside town of Newcastle so a trip for an ice-cream on the beach is a must!

Caravanning and camping available onsite.

Castle Ward, Co. Down

Less than a mile from Strangford village, Castle Ward has lots to discover. Play hide and seek in the Victorian sunken gardens, stroll around the stunning Temple Water or pay a visit to the farmyard where junior pedal tractors and animal costumes await for famers in the making.

With over 13 miles of multi-use trails along the lough shore and woodlands, you’ll never be done exploring. Located within the grounds of Castle Ward, Clearsky Adventure Centre will provide everything you need to enjoy the trails including bike and canoe hire for paddling Strangford Lough.

Get an education with a tour of the eccentric 18th century mansion or visit the resident crafters or coffee shop.

Camping: choose to stay at the caravan site or in the onsite glamping pods. Onsite self-catering accommodation in Potter’s Holiday Cottage is also available.

Carnfunnock Country Park, Co. Antrim

Featuring 191 hectares of mixed woodland, colourful gardens, spectacular coastline, and with panoramic views of the County Antrim coast, the kids will love the maritime themed outdoor adventure playground at Carnfunnock Country Park

Other fun to be had includes a maze in the shape of Northern Ireland, a family fun zone with miniature railway, bouncy castle, bungee run, remote control boats and an 18 hole mini golf course. Make sure to keep an eye out for themed family events happening throughout the year.

Caravanning and camping available onsite.

Castle Archdale Country Park, Co. Fermanagh

With a fascinating history dating back to WW2 this bustling campsite offers a wide range of activities either on the lough or amongst the acres of woods. The marina area offers bike hire, boat hire and canoe hire so you can enjoy the Lough Erne Canoe Trail or the Castle Archdale family cycling trail.

Peddle to explore the butterfly garden, wildflower meadow and deer enclosure. Boats are also available to hire if you fancy a picnic on one of the nearby islands.

Caravanning and camping available onsite.


Posted by Sarah

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