Your Weekend Starts Here!

There’s lots to do this final weekend of Heritage Week, Saturday 26 and Sunday 27 August.

We’re celebrating Ireland’s natural, built and cultural heritage with tours, talks, exhibitions and workshops right across the country.

All events below are free with no booking required.  

There are hundreds more events happening across Ireland, 90% of them free, so see what’s on near you.

Loughrea Medieval Festival

Friday 25 August, 7:30pm - 10:30pm

Saturday 26 August, 11am - 9pm

Sunday 27 August, 11am - 5pm

Loughrea, Co. Galway (Various locations)

Join Loughrea Medieval Festival for a weekend of free medieval family fun as they recreate medieval life in all its glory.  Enjoy talks, workshops and lots more.


Our History in Nature Conservation

Saturday 26 August, 10am - 4pm

North Bull Island Visitor Centre, Co. Dublin

Enjoy illustrated talks, interactive displays, workshops and walks paying tribute to the naturalists of the past who contributed to our knowledge and understanding of biodiversity today.  Themes include 'By the Seaside', 'Small yet Beautiful' and 'A City of Flowers'.


The Intriguing Story of Doolin

Saturday 26 August, 10:30am - 12pm

Russell Community Centre, Doolin, Co. Clare

Learn the intriguing story of the history of Doolin as told by archaeologist Joe McCooey in a walk along the Doolin Geopark Heritage Trail.


Archaeofest 2017

Saturday 26 August, 11am - 4pm

Merrion Square Park, Dublin 2

The Institute of Archaeologists of Ireland once again brings Archaeofest to Merrion Square Park. This archaeological extravaganza is suitable for all the family. Join them for excavations, demonstrations and much more.

There’s lots to do in the buildings around Merrion Square on Saturday too at Merrion Square Open Day.  It’s a unique opportunity to get behind the doors of many houses not usually open to the public and to enjoy a wide range of events, tours and music.


Walk with the Big Boats

Saturday 26 August, 11am - 6pm

Sunday 27 August, 12pm - 6pm

The Royal Canal, between Keenagh and Richmond Harbour, Co. Longford

To celebrate 200 years of the Royal Canal why not walk the towpath of the canal in the company of the Heritage Boats who were the working cargo boats of the inland waterways.  There will be associated lectures, displays and events at Keenagh (Mosstown), Killashee and Richmond Harbour (Clondra).


Dig It - Archaeology for Children

Saturday 26 August, 11am - 5pm

Lough Key Forest & Activity Park, Boyle, Co. Roscommon

"Dig It" is a fun, educational, hands-on archaeological experience for ages 3+, where they will carry out a 'mini excavation' with the promise of hidden treasure.  Using safe, child-friendly tools (wooden and plastic 'trowels' and brushes), children are invited to help two experienced archaeologists carry out a supervised 'mini-excavation' with the promise of buried secrets and a surprise or two.


All-Ireland Whale Watch Day 2017

Saturday 26 August, 2pm - 5pm

Headlands across Ireland

The Irish Whale and Dolphin Group invites you to their annual, free and guided land-based whale watch at headlands across Ireland.  While there are no guarantees of sightings, given reasonable weather you have a good chance of seeing some of the marine species that can be viewed locally. Bring binoculars!


Sunday 27 August is Water Heritage Day when we celebrate water and what it means to us.  Many of the most beautiful places in Ireland are around our rivers, lakes, springs and coasts.  These wild and wonderful places and the wildlife they support provide inspiration and enjoyment for young and old.  Keeping our water healthy is good for our land, for our wildlife and for us!


Biodiversity & Heritage of Mulkear

Sunday 27 August, 10am - 12pm

The Mill Bar, Co. Limerick

Explore the biodiversity and built heritage of the Mulkear River at Annacotty.  This is a great opportunity to get outdoors, to notice nature, make memories with our children and appreciate the wonders of our natural environment.


Onboard a Research Vessel

Sunday 27 August, 10am - 4pm

Kilmore Quay, Co. Wexford

Come onboard this research vessel to meet marine geologists and archaeologists from the Geological Survey of Ireland and the Discovery Programme. Learn how the INFOMAR team map Ireland's seabed and about the exciting new coastal heritage project CHERISH.


Wicklow Cliff Loop Walk

Sunday 27 August, 11:30am - 1:30pm

Glen Turn Beach Car Park - past Golf Club, south of Wicklow Town, Co. Wicklow

This is a particularly beautiful stretch of coastline with a lot of history. It also holds a huge variety of bird-life and flora. Expect panoramic coastal views, penal church ruins, a lime kiln, an ancient spring and to top it all off, you might spot a seal!  This is unsuitable for very small children as short sections are along cliffs. Binoculars recommended.


Kilbeggan Funday by the Brosna  

Sunday 27 August, 12pm - 2:30pm

Kilbeggan, Co. Westmeath

The River Brosna is Kilbeggan's best-kept secret.. that is until now! A walk along the Brosna during Family Funday will enable children and adults alike to discover it's secrets and amazing wildlife.

Go Biking with a Viking

Sunday 27 August, 12pm - 4pm

Waterford Greenway at Woodstown, Co. Waterford

Go Biking with a Viking and explore the Viking history of Waterford along the Woodstown section of the Waterford Greenway.  Cycle, walk or take the Waterford Suir Valley Railway from Kilmeaden to Woodstown and explore Déise Medieval's Viking Village, try your hand at medieval archery or wattle fence building, watch battle re-enactments and learn to be an archaeologist for a day. Take part in guided walks on Viking Woodstown and Wildlife of the River Suir.


Athy River and Canal Walk

Sunday 27 August, 12pm - 2pm

Athy Heritage Centre, Co. Kildare

Enjoy a nature Walk along the River Barrow and Grand Canal in Athy. The 1.5km leisurely walk will take in the nature, history and highlights of Athy's waterways.  Led by local biodiversity expert, Michael Jacob, you can enjoy demonstrations from anglers and canoeists, as well as the opportunity to carry out kick sampling on the River.


Nature, Water and Poetry

Sunday 27 August, 12pm - 1pm

Doorly Park Arch, Riverside, Sligo Town, Co. Sligo

A Stroll along the Garavogue River learning about biodiversity and listening to poetry from Yeats to reflect on the beautiful landscape along the Shelly River. Bring your own water poems to share along the walk.


Broadmeadow River Family Day

27 August, 12pm - 4:30pm

Broadmeadow River, Deerpark, Ashbourne, Co. Meath

Join local enthusiasts as well as environmental experts for a family educational fun experience covering many fields on the biodiversity of the Broadmeadow river.  Learn about the aquatic insects living in the river and how important they are for the other wildlife.  Join workshops on how to build an insect hotel or bird and bat boxes. A river cleanup will also take place early in the day.


Something Fishy Going On

Sunday 27 August, 12pm - 4pm

Glenveagh National Park beside restaurant at main car park, Co. Donegal

See juvenile trout and salmon in an aquarium and view mayflies, stoneflies and freshwater shrimp under microscopes.  Learn about the life cycle of various fish species and environmental factors that affect their survival.


Seaweeds: Exploring the Shore

Sunday 27 August, 1:30pm - 4pm

Whiddy Island, Co. Cork

Join the Ellen Hutchins Festival for an exciting and educational shoreline exploration, followed by identifying & preserving seaweeds 1800s-style. Follow in the footsteps of botanist Ellen Hutchins with the enthusiastic expert Dr Susan Steele taking us on an exploration of the wonderful diversity of the shore. Try and preserve your specimen 1800s-style by floating onto paper.

(public ferries leave Bantry 11am & 1pm and cost €6.50 return)


Nature Nurturers

Sunday 27 August, 2pm - 4:30pm

The View Point, An Taisce's Booterstown Nature Reserve, Rock Road, Booterstown, Co. Dublin

Join An Taisce to celebrate all the heroes, past and present, who have conserved and protected this precious place. Join in wild bird and plant talks and walks.  Hear about all the naturalists, ornithologists, artists, writers and enthusiasts who have nurtured, protected and celebrated this special reserve for wildlife; learn about the secret lives of wild birds, bugs and plants and what you can do to protect them.


Ballintleva Nature Trail

Sunday 27 August, 3pm - 6pm

Ballintleva Old N.S., Co. Roscommon

Walk to Lough Croan (approx. 6km) a rare turlough habitat with a wet, reed centre, and a fen which floods in winter. The site is a wildlife sanctuary and the Short-eared Owl, Whooper Swan and Golden Plover have been recorded here.


Balrothery Bats

Sunday 27 August, 8pm - 10pm

Meet outside Cottage Tea rooms Firhouse, Dublin

Meet the Balrothery Bats with Kevin Delahunty of Bat Conservation Ireland! Hear pipistrelles, Daubentons bats and perhaps Leislers bats! Hear the bats on special bat monitors particularly the ones which roost and live near the Dodder waters.


See what’s on near you!