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Looking to venture off the path of The Ring of Kerry while visiting The Republic of Ireland? Be sure to check out this family friendly list of things to do in Tralee! Boat adventures through the wetlands, a medival village recreated in the county museum, a rose garden with world wide fame, and a restored windmill are just the start!
Special thanks to Failte Ireland, and all the locations listed for allowing us to visit as a part of our TBEX experience . All opinions are my own. This post also contains affiliate links. I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe would be a good fit for my readers. This comes at no added cost to you!
When I visited Ireland, I was sure to check out the major tourist spots that most people have come to expect. But as part of our TBEX experience, we sometimes went off the beaten path and discovered charming towns along the way.
Tralee was by far my favorite as a family destination. The entire time I wished my boys were with me, as they would have had a great time at all the stops. Tralee is the capital of County Kerry and is located on the southwest quadrant of the Republic of Ireland. Tralee has a population of just over 23,000. Some of the stops in my list are within walking distance of each other. We utilized a chartered bus to transport us, but the city has a bus system that does appear to go all around town! So what made my list?
Family Friendly Things To Do In Tralee
- Tralee Bay Wetlands
- Tralee Town Park
- Kerry County Museum
- Blennerville Windmill
So let’s check them out!
Tralee Bay Wetlands
The Tralee Bay Wetlands is an 8000 acre reserve that stretches from Slieve Mish mountains to the mouth of the bay. It features an amazing viewing and observation tower. The picture above showcases part of that view. Can you spy the horses roaming in the pastures?
The Tralee Bay Wetlands Center also offers guided nature boat tours that include bird sightings, and possible wetland animals like dragonflies and frogs. There is also a board walk for a different vantage point. Lookout hides also give the option for more bird watching opportunities.
For the slightly more adventurous, the light watersports include: Paddle boats (Pedalo Boats in Irish speak), row boats, water walker zorbs, and even a climbing wall! For those looking for more educational offerings, their interactive wildlife exhibit showcases Tralee’s geological evolution along with native plants and animals.
The Tralee Bay Wetlands Visitor Center features a cafe, gift shop, restroom faciliteis, wifi and tourist information. I must admit though, it was the viewing tower that stole my heart. That view!!!!
Tralee Town Park
Let’s just marvel at the roses for a bit, shall we? Keep in mind, this was in October and they were still stunning, even as the autumn weather ventured in! Stunning!
I’ve started adding gardens to my traveling itineraries and they never seem to disappoint! The Tralee Town Park, also known by the locals as “The Green” covers 35 acres. The rose garden is the star of the show and it features many varieties which are marked. You might recall my Instagram photo slideshow that showcased the “You’re Beautiful” variety.
Tralee is probably most famous for their Rose of Tralee International Festival. It’s one of Ireland’s longest running festivals – over 59 years. The whole thing is hard to explain, but this post explains the Rose of Tralee for those of us outsiders. Also in the garden area, you will find the glass memorial that names all the past and present roses. You will also see the statue of William and Mary. It’s a romantic story worth looking into!
Kerry County Museum
The museum has several floors, but the Medieval Experience floor would be my boys’ favorite! They would love the figures, and the life like city. It’s so surreal to walk through (and I can imagine how Halloween week they might use that to their advantage!). It features market stalls, blacksmiths, etc. It even features a lifelike smell. That was the part I could do without. There were several times where we were really unsure if the figures were wax or real.
It really gives you quite a peek into what life was like back then. The museum has rotating exhibits, and some permanent ones. While I was there, I was lucky enough to see the Tom Crean exhibition. I’ve always been interested in Antartica, and this went more in depth about their journey than any other I had read. It is currently closed for renovations and TLC.
There was also a large exhibit on Roger Casement, and that gave me another look into the “Rebellion”. If you are visiting Ireland, read up on this part of history! Or catch a few Irish movies to learn a thing or to such as Rebellion (historical fiction based series), 1916 : The Rebellion (documentary series) , The Wind That Shakes The Barley (movie), or Michael Collins (movie). Be sure to check out their website to see what else they have on exhibition!
The final place to visit is my favorite of all the things to do in Tralee.
Built in 1800, the original windmill was used for grinding corn. It fell into disrepair after closing, but after a 7 year restoration project, it was reopened to the public. Now fully restored, visitors can see how the windmill works up close. Travel to the very top and see the inner workings while walking through with a knowledgeable guide.
To get the windmill to “work”, you simply need the wind. The canvases on the vanes catch the wind, allowing it to move! I loved the Blennerville Windmill so much that I’m dedicating an entire post to it! Be sure to be on the lookout for that!
Are you ready for a family friendly adventure in Tralee? What suggestions do you have for things to do in Tralee? Anything I missed?
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Things To Do In Tralee Ireland
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