6 Fun Family Friendly Events To Enjoy In July
If you’re not going abroad for a family holiday this summer, don’t feel like you’re missing out: With the number of terrific festivals and events on for families in Ireland this July, all you’ll miss are the airport queues!
Here are some of our picks from the packed summer schedule of events. Now all we need is some holiday sunshine…
1. Galway International Arts Festival
July 17th – July 30th
Varies, see website
+353 91 509 700
Included in many a festival catchphrase is the word “unique,” but, when you’re talking about the Galway International Arts Festival, it really does apply. Nowhere else will you find such an effortless mix of high art and accessible street performance, and there really is something to appeal to all ages. We can’t wait for the (free) street spectacles: There is the Mobile Hommes parade of drummers and percussionists, i-Puppet, The People Build architectural spectacle (in which the audience takes part), and the stunning Chariot of the Sea.
2. Festival of Curiosity
Venue: Various locations in Dublin city
Date: July 20th – July 23rd
Cost: From €0
Curiosity is what keeps us alert and learning through all stages of life, and The Festival of Curiosity celebrates and encourages our inner desire to discover. Running in various Dublin, it offers a wide range of arts, science, and technology events, including a great selection of free daytime activities for families. You’ll find interactive installations, a giant outdoor Bubblearium, pop-up playgrounds, curiosity carnivals, Lego Workshops, and lots more.
3. Bray Air Display
All eyes will be on the sky in Bray in late July for one of Ireland's most spectacular air displays. Thrill seekers young and old will catch their breaths as aircraft of all kinds engage in exceptional feats of aerial magic. Running since 2006, the Bray Air Display has brought hours of fun to tens of thousands of people. And it’s not just airplanes: There’s a full schedule of activities to keep the family entertained over the weekend.
4. Boyle Arts Festival
Boyle Arts Festival has grown over the years to become a ten-day jewel of an event sparkling in the summer festival season. The focus is on small, intimate events in historical and architecturally significant buildings, and, although music and art remain the highlights of the festival, you will find a host of other activities to entertain you. Enjoy theatrical performances, film, literature and storytelling, comedy, singers' nights, street performance, and an attractive selection of workshops and children's programmes. Local art exhibitions, pop-up galleries and craft trails take in empty premises across the town, making for a truly creative and community-driven experience.
5. Ballina Salmon Festival
Venue: Ballina, Co. Mayo
Admission: From free
Dates: July 9th – July 16th
+353 (0)96 79814
Originally called the Moy Salmon Festival (after the river), Ballina Salmon Festival was established in 1964, and it continues to be one of the highlights of the summer season in the west of Ireland. Some 200,000 annual visitors can’t be wrong! And it’s not all about fish: This is a particularly family-focused festival, with one-third of the entire programme devoted entirely to children. Events include everything from the Junior Literary Awards and daily kids’ gigs on the Core Stage to children’s fishing competitions and workshops in music for little ones, circus, papier mache, dance, and clay modelling.
6. 98FM’s Big Slide Festival
Venue: Winetavern Street, Dublin
Dates: July 15th and July 16th
Together, 98FM in partnership with Dublin City Council will make a splash on the summer events calendar with The Big Slide Festival. The two day family-friendly festival will include more sliding, music, entertainment and food than ever before. Grab the whole families’ swimsuits and join in on the fun on July 15th and July 16th! After a crowd of 20,000 sliders and spectators last year, the Big Slide will return to its home on Winetavern Street (near Christchurch Cathedral) giving sliders an extraordinary and unforgettable way to travel through Christchurch. On Saturday, July 15th, the festival will run from 10am – 6pm and Sunday July 16th from 12:30pm – 6pm. Not only will you get the chance to slide through Dublin but there will be a family fun zone including food, music and entertainment in the Wood Quay Amphitheatre, right at the bottom of the Big Slide.
Wannabe sliders will have to stay tuned to 98FM to hear when tickets will be available to register for online. A limited number of tickets will be released each day and will be available right up until the day of the Big Slide, there will be 4,200 wristbands available for sliders overall.98FM presenter Dara Quilty said, “After the success of last year’s Big Slide I’m absolutely delighted to announce we’re bringing it back. Last year was the first time Dublin had a 260ft water slide going through it and I guess this year is the second! We’ve made some adjustments and the slide is going to be way faster, way wetter and way more fun this year. Bring it on”.
If you head along to any of these events, let us know in the comments!