Castlecomer Discovery Park Kilkenny – For All Seasons

Castlecomer Discovery Park Kilkenny

Castlecomer Discovery Park Kilkenny is set on eighty acres of natural woodland, lawns and lakes. In fact the woodlands aren’t just natural woodlands, they are a multi-activity woodland park, that is home to elves and fairies, fallow and Sika deer, sheep and donkey, birds and butterflies, tree-top walking, walls for climbing, river strolls and lake views, swings and slides, high ropes and ziplines, boats and canoes, axe throwing and archery, mountain biking and trails for walking.

The list could go on a little longer but I think you’ve got the gist. And just in case you’re not in a very active mood, you can also find coffee and treats and some beautiful Irish based Art, Design and Craft in the The Craft Yard studios onsite.

Castlecomer Discovery Park Kilkenny - For All Seasons - January Colours

Once part of what was the Wandesforde Estate for 300 years, Castlecomer Discovery Park is steeped in a coal mining history but continually creating a new legacy for the appreciation of outdoor fun, leisure and nature.

There’s a reason we visit throughout all seasons, and why we adults enjoy it and our children adore it. It’s accessible, mostly free, and fun.

Did you know the Woodland Trails open daily from 8.30am until dusk!

What’s Free?

  1. The nature trails, river walk and lake views.
  2. A visit to the Elf & Fairy Village.
  3. A visit to see the animals.
  4. Timber Tumblers Playground.

Castlecomer Discovery Park Kilkenny - For All Seasons - July Adventures

Did you know that Castlecomer Discovery Park is a not for profit social enterprise?

What’s Not Free?

  1. Parking but it’s only €5 for all day parking.
  2. The Activities such as ziplines, archery, boating etc. Get the full price list here.
  3. The coffee and cake, sweet treats and hot chocolate.
  4. The Coal Mining Exhibition.

Lake Views to River Walks with History in Between

If you’d like to know about the history of Castlecomer Discovery Park, you’ll find information on their website in their ‘Our Story’ and ‘Our History’ sections. Once at the park you can visit the Coal Mining Museum within the Visitors Centre. Entrance fees range from €3 per child to €5 per adult but you can find the full entrance fee details here.

  • Picture 1: Did you know that there are two artificial lakes at Castlecomer Discovery Park?
  • Picture 2: And that there are lots of signs of its mining history still evident.

Further Reading: Memorable Exploring at Kells Priory in Kilkenny

  • Picture 1: We love the woodland trails all year round but especially when the leaves have fallen and are extra crunchy.
  • Picture 2: Bluebell spotting along the River Dinin within Castlecomer Discovery Park.

Visit the Animals

Castlecomer Discovery Park Kilkenny - For All Seasons - Visit the animals

As mentioned the park is home to lots of Irish nature, flowers and fauna. But it’s also home to deer, sheep and a donkey and a pig too!

Timber Tumblers Playground

It’s free and it’s fun! Perfect for our little adventurers!

Elf & Fairy Village

Castlecomer Discovery Park Kilkenny - For All Seasons - Elf Village Mini Houses

We adore the Elf & Fairy Village. From the cute fairy houses to the bigger sized elf houses. The boys love exploring, knocking on doors, peeping in through windows at the tiny interiors and seeing if they can spot something new.

This area is perfect for little children of all ages but especially for toddlers and younger children with vivid imaginations – and who doesn’t want to nurture the later.

Another lovely feature is that ground and pathways in the Elf & Fairy Village is floored with wood chip and bark, basically creating a child-friendly soft play area. Perfect if your little one is prone to tumbles of delight when fairy spotting!

Elf Village Canopy Café

Our trip is never complete without a stop to the Canopy Café within the Elf Village. Hot chocolates all round, safe under the canopy from April showers, or summer’s hot sun rays. And the trip wouldn’t be complete without an imaginary ride on the train … all aboard!

Castlecomer Discovery Park Kilkenny - For All Seasons - Elf Cafe Hot Chocolates

Junior Woodland Adventure Course & Bouncing Net

In most recent visits as the boys have grown so too have their options for getting involved in activities. With Cassidy now four, and Smith six, it was time to let loose on the Junior Woodland Adventure Course. We opted for the Junior Play Area Combo Pass that includes the Bouncing Net.

Here’s what you need to know about Castlecomer Discovery Park Junior Woodland Adventure:

  • Suitable for 3-8 year olds.
  • Helmets are provided. But be sure they’re wearing suitable footwear.
  • Tickets can be purchased at reception or at the course
  • Price €5 or €8 for Bouncing Net & Junior Woodland Combo
  • If your little ones hearts are set on it – do check it’s opened before visiting.

As mentioned we opted for the pass combo on our most recent visit that included the bouncing net. We didn’t think they’d get as much of a kick out of it as we have a trampoline at home, but we were very mistaken because they loved it.

These photos don’t do the size of the bouncing net justice. It’s very big and bouncy, with large separate netted compartments to climb through, and the perfect opportunity for lots of safe tumbling.

Castlecomer Discovery Park in Kilkenny will be a family favourite of ours for years to come. As the boys grow they’ll be given the opportunity to experience all the activities available to them. I’m looking forward to the day they ask me to join them tree top walking … well, psyching myself up really!

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