23 Heritage Week Events for Night Owls

Explore the night this Heritage Week with a variety of events taking place after dark.

If you are busy during the day, looking for something to do after work or simply want to experience a hidden side to our heritage take a look at these night-time events!

Sunset Tour

Cullahill Community Centre, Laois

Saturday 19, Sunday 27 August, 7:30am - 8pm

Laois tour guides are doing a morning, noon and night walk for three tours in one day. If you can’t make the morning tours why not head out to their evening tour to watch the sunset over the Mac Giolla Phadraig Wayon Cullahill Mountain. All tours are free.

Island Hopping Camping Trip

Riverside, Sligo

Saturday 19 – Friday 25 August  6pm - 11am

No this isn’t Croatia, this event is happening each evening in a beautiful part of the West of Ireland.  Paddle along the Garavogue River to spend the night learning some bushcraft skills and cooking and singing at a campfire in an island at Lough Gill. Tents are provided you just need to bring a sleeping bag and good waterproof clothing.  Booking is required, and admission is Adult: €30, Child: €10 and Concession: €10.


Overnight Camping Discovery Night

Turvey Nature Reserve, Dublin

Saturday 19 August, 6:30pm - 10am

Experiencing the outdoors is what it is all about for this year’s National Heritage Week. Why not head to this fun family camping event in the woodlands. Pitch a tent or build and sleep in your shelter. Then spend the night discovering wildlife, before sitting around the fire singing songs and toasting marshmallows and stargazing. Admission is Adult: €10 and Child: €5. Booking is required.

Photographing the Night Sky

Fanad Lighthouse, Donegal

Saturday 19 August, 9:45pm - 12pm

How to photograph the dark skies with astrophotographers Rita Wilson and Daragh McDonough. Suitable for beginners. Numbers limited, participants must be 16+. * this event is weather dependent. Admission is Adult €10. Booking Required.


A Night Under the Stars

Caherdaniel Village Hall, Kerry

Sunday 20 August, 10pm - 11:45pm

Experience the I.D.A Light Pollution Video and Wild Derrynane underwater night footage followed by Stargazing at Staigue Fort (weather permitting). You will need warm clothes, sturdy shoes, binoculars, red torches, and perhaps a reclining chair. Please avoid phone torches and bright lights as they affect our night vision.

After Hours Photography Evening

St. Patrick’s Cathedral, Dublin

Monday 21 August 6.30pm-9.30pm

Here is an opportunity for you photographers out there. St. Patrick’s Cathedral is hosting an after-hours photography evening. Hashtag your perfect image and it will get posted onto a giant screen on the night for everyone to see. Free admission but Booking is required.


Lough Nafooey Volcano Walk

Finny Church Mayo

Monday 21 August, 6:30pm - 9pm

Geological Survey Ireland are hosting an evening walk around Lough Nafooey where you will learn to read about the volcanic eruptions and environmental changes around the lake which happened 480 to 440 million years ago.


Glenribbeen Bat Walk

Glenribbeen Eco Lodge, Glenribbeen, Lismore, Waterford

Monday 21 - Thursday 24 August, 9pm - 10:30pm

A 20 minute presentation on Irish bats followed by a 350m walk to the Blackwater River along a 250 year old path. Discussing the 4 types of bats we might hear (and see) and hear about the social and industrial history of this Castanja-lined dyke built after the Land Enclosure Acts from 1770's. Bring good walking shoes, insect-repellent, torches and a little patience and humour. If it rains - bats won't come out. They don't like it any more than we do.  Booking Required.

Heritage Week Table Quiz

St. Patrick’s Cathedral, Dublin

Tuesday 22 August 8pm-9pm

Fancy yourself as a culture vulture or heritage know it all? St. Patrick’s Cathedral will be hosting a table quiz night to test everything you know about Ireland’s heritage. Think you got what it takes to win? Get a team together and test your knowledge. Admission is free, but booking is required.


Evening Tour The Rock of Dunamaise

Rock of Dunamaise, Co. Laois

Wednesday 23 August, 6:30pm - 7:30pm

Experiencing Laois have an after work guided tour of The Rock of Dunamaise. 1000 years of stories of war, love and royalty on this famous stronghold. Photo on this blog is of the Rock of Dunamaise.

Shot in the Dark

St. Patrick’s Church Monaghan

Wednesday 23 August, 8pm - 9:30pm

An opportunity for all you budding photographic enthusiasts to capture a historical building at night. Learn some new tips and tricks to take the perfect picture at night. Refreshments will be served afterwards. Admission is free, but booking is required.


Stargazing and Badgers

Brookfield Farm, Tipperary

Wednesday 23 August, 8pm - 11pm

Come out to see the beautiful sunset at Brookfield Farm situated near Lough Derg. Go stargazing and wildlife spotting for badgers as the night sky sets in. This is a weather permitting event. Admission is free, but booking is required.


Stargazing on Achill Island

Slevemore Village, Mayo

Wednesday 23, Friday 25 August, 10pm - 11pm

Take a tour starting from Slevemore’s deserted village and learn about the night sky constellations that our ancestors would have seen when they first settled in the area back in 4000BC. Admission is free, but booking is required. This is a weather permitting event.


Entirely Hollow Aside from the Dark

Aillwee Cave, Clare

Thursday 24 August, 7pm - 11pm

Entirely hollow aside from the dark is a psycho-acoustic artwork in the Aillwee Cave.  This 3D sound installation creates a visceral experience of journeying into someone’s inner dialogue. The artwork was created by Alan James Burns in collaboration with Sue Rainsford and Ian Dunphy. Admission is free, but booking is required.

Mayo Dark Skies: Protecting our Heritage

Mulranny Park Hotel, Co. Mayo

Thursday 24 August, 7:30pm - 8:30pm

Ireland's leading expert, Prof. Brian Espey of TCD Astrophysics Dept, will speak about light pollution in Ireland and how we can solve this problem and retain the natural heritage of our night skies.  In 2016 Mayo Dark Sky Park received a gold tier International award for the quality of its night skies, free from light pollution. Booking Required.


A Night of Trad Music and Folklore

Kades Kounty Glenville, Cork

Thursday 24 August, 8:30pm - 12am

A magnificent night of traditional music, stories and folklore. Music will be played by local musicians. There will also be a talk, from historian Padraig King, on the Glenville connection to the 'Clonmult Ambush' in 1921.


Bat Walk

Spa Wells, Lisdoonvarna, Clare

Thursday 24 August, 9pm - 10pm

Stroll around while listening, watching and learning about the fascinating local bat population with David Lyons from Clare Bat Group. 


The Foyle: Tales of Salmon Fishing

Men’s Shed Moville, Donegal

Friday 25 August, 7pm - 11pm

A night organised by Wild Strands, Wild Food and Maritime Adventure Company, to celebrate and document the rich maritime heritage of the fishermen who fished the wild salmon on the Foyle. The evening will be an opportunity for local fishermen of Moville and Greencastle to come together to share in the relaxed setting of Moville's Men Shed to tell their tales of fishing. This was a tradition that is no more, and it is hoped that this event provides an opportunity for the fishermen to celebrate their stories. Booking required.

Creatures of the Night

Teach Raithneach Heritage and Cultural Centre, Starinagh, Meath

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

Join local Residents and Broomfield Mens Shed for a talk on Barn Owls and their habitats by John Lusby followed by a bat walk led by resident expert Dr Niamh Roche.  This will be followed by refreshments in Teach Raithneach.


Tour of the Night Sky

Athlone Visitor Centre, Westmeath

Friday 25 August, 8pm - 11pm

Join Midlands Astronomy Club at Athlone Castle for a lecture and a tour of the night sky. This is a family friendly event and telescopes will be onsite. This event will be weather dependent.

The Moon from Bere Island

Bere Island Project Group Lecture Theatre, Rerrin, Bere Island, Cork

Saturday 26th August, 7.30pm – 8.30pm

Join the Cork Astronomy Club on Bere Island for an illustrated talk on the moon & the history of lunar exploration. Following the talk, there will be an outdoor viewing session of the moon. Admission is free but booking required.

Dark Skies Heritage Walk of Kells

Ancient East Boyne Tours, Heritage Centre, Kells, Meath

Saturday 26 August, 8pm - 9:30pm

Come for a leisurely evening stroll through the ancient streets of Kells. A relaxing way to learn and discuss and ruminate over the past and present of this historic town! We will start at the Market Cross and wend our way through town, taking in the Round Tower, Columcille's House, the bust of Maureen O'Hara and more. Booking Required. Admission is Adult: €3 Child: €1 Concession: €2 Family: €5

Dancing at the Crossroads

Laharn Cross, Lombardstown, Mallow,  Cork

Sunday 20th and 27th of August 8pm-10pm

Stick on your dancing shoes and head to Laharn Cross to try out your moves. Waltzes, quicksteps, foxtrots, not to mention polkas, shoe the donkey and the Siege of Ennis are all danced to live music through the evening. A great social event to end your Heritage Week on.

See whats happening near you for Heritage Week.