With the Easter holidays approaching, now is the time to plan in some fun-filled Easter activities for you and little ones, and if you’re fond of searching high and low for the elusive eggs in an Easter egg hunt and enjoy getting out and about in the fresh air, County Down will have something for you! To help you with your planning, we’ve put together a selection of some of our favourite Easter outings, some of which are just a stone’s throw from our quaint country guesthouse at Dufferin Coaching Inn.
Festive discoveries await at Castle Ward
Located just 20 minutes from Dufferin, Castle Ward offers families a fun and jam-packed outing over the Easter break. From 26th March – 8th April visitors can explore the various trails around the castle grounds, taking in the lovely blooming snowdrops and clearing the cobwebs in nature, enjoy special activities in the Discovery Zone – inspired by naturalist, microscopist and illustrator, Mary Ward, and join in on the search for Easter eggs thanks to the annual Cadbury Easter Egg Hunt which will take place on the grounds from 30th March – 3rd April.
Tee off at Ardglass Golf Club
Dufferin’s nearest golfing treasure, Ardglass Golf Club is the perfect spot for those looking to take it easy over the Easter holidays. Whilst working on your golf swing on the stunning 18-hole links course, you can also take in the breath-taking views of the north-east coast. Check out its beautiful setting here.
Murlough National Nature Reserve
Discover the beauty of Murlough National Nature Reserve with a visit this Easter. Featuring a stunning backdrop of the Mourne Mountains, Murlough Nature Reserve is filled with an abundance of local wildlife and a network of paths and boardwalks dotted across its 6km stretch. After exploring the reserve, many visitors then pop into Mourne Seafood Bar located in the picturesque village of Dundrum which serves up some delicious award-winning fresh seafood – all of which is sourced from the restaurant’s own shellfish beds.
Easter ‘fish-tivities’ at Exploris
The recently renovated Exploris Aquarium in Portaferry invites members of the public to hop along and visit the centre for its two-day Easter celebrations which include a range of themed arts and crafts in the Crabby Craft Club, getting stuck in to the daily open pool demonstrations, and lots of Easter treats and aquatic discoveries for the whole family. Just make sure to book your tickets!
Portaferry Visitor Information Centre
Following a family trip to Exploris, we encourage visitors to stop in to the Portaferry Visitor Information Centre whilst in the area. This Easter Monday (2nd April), the centre will offer a day of free family entertainment, including live entertainers from 2pm-4pm and Easter crafts for the children. If you’re staying with us in Killyleagh, you can simply jump on the Strangford Ferry for a quick and easy crossing to Portaferry.
The Ark Open Farm
Come along and hunt for the Easter bunny at Ark Open Farm. Located in Newtownards, this a great spot to visit this Easter if you plan on venturing up to the most northern tip of Strangford Lough. Each visitor will be given a special numbered bunny that they need to locate on the farm to receive their chocolate Easter treat.
Whilst on your hunt, embrace the new lease of life that spring has brought to the Farm with the sounds of new-born animals including chicks, lambs and young calves. The farm also offers visitors an opportunity to enjoy the friendly farmhouse atmosphere at the Cottage Café and Restaurant which serves up home cooked delights including pies, traybakes and cupcakes.
Cockle Row Cottages
Further north of Newtownards, Cockle Row Cottages in Groomsport will play host to a free Easter fun day for all the family on Easter Sunday. The cottages will open from 11am-5pm, with free entertainment from 2pm-4pm including traditional live music, crafts, a gardening workshop, and the ‘Tales of the Wild animal roadshow.