Check Cobh out this summer – 5 Things to do for an afternoon visit

Cobh is a lovely little colourful town and it really comes alive in Summer when the cruise liners come in.  These are a few of the things we enjoyed last week and some I have put on the to do list for the next time!  This is my first time back in Cobh in years!  Please send on more recommendations and I can add them to the post if you are a local or go there a lot.

  1. Playground and Park – The little Kennedy Park in front of the water in the centre of the town is gorgeous to hang out for an afternoon on the promenade.  We spent over an hour here in the playground and just walking around and playing on the canons and old band stand.  Note there are no swings and it is more toddler oriented I think.
  2. See a Cruise Liner up Close – Time your visit when one of the cruise liners are in.  It is some sight to drive into Cobh with these majestic ships towering over the little town.  Nice to go for a walk down to where it is docked.  Some locals dress up in victorian clothes and wave the ship off if you are there on its departure.  I think there is music there also on the weekends when the ship leaves. The timetable for cruise liners is here
  3. Take the road Train through the town.  We didn’t do this but it looked like lots of fun.  Not sure whether they have space for buggies so it is probably worth giving them a ring and checking it out.  We will have to go back to do it.  The front of the train looks like Thomas the Tank Engine which is very cute.  Cobh Road Train
  4. Titanic Experience –  I think the girls are too young for this yet but I am looking forward to bringing them when they are older.  It was voted one of the best places to go in Ireland by parents on the Independent. titanic Experience
  5. Get an Ice Cream at the seasonal Ice Cream shop outside kennedy Park. (not sure what it is called) The ice cream is delicious and a lovely end to a nice afternoon trip to Cobh.icecream

So much more to do in Cobh so will have to return soon.  Here is other things to put on the to do list for the lovely town.


  • Get Lunch/Coffee at The Yellow Door.  By chance we got parking right outside and it had a Badger and Dodo sign for coffee so I thought what better place to refuel!  I thought the food was tasty and it was reasonable and the staff were lovely.  The girls had more of a picnic in the park after as they were napping while I ate!bikecobh
  • Sirius Arts Centre – I only popped my head inside for a few photos as it looked amazing.  Beautiful building with windows looking out to sea. They serve Coffee on the Veranda at certain times of the day.



  • Just sitting in Kennedy Park by the water in the sunshine was my highlight.  I think I would love to sit outside and have coffee at the sirus art centre as it looked gorgeous so that is for next time!
  • Experiencing the Town when the cruise liner is docked in the port is definitely worth experiencing.  The place was buzzing.  Schedule on the Port of Cork.

Cobh’s People Regatta is on Friday 11th, Saturday 12th and Sunday 13th of August.  Enjoy sailing, rowing, Open air concerts, Children’s activities, Markets, regatta queens, children’s crabfishing and fireworks display.   Check out the details on Visit Cobh.

cobh regatta

If you don’t live close and want to make a full day out of it definitely check out Fota House and Gardens also which is one of my favourite spots in East Cork.


TOP 5 of WHATS ON IN CORK the last week in July!

This is my round up for the weekend….If anyone knows about anything else?  Let me know.

If you do go to an event that you have seen listed and you post on Instagram or Facebook I would love you to tag eatplaylovecork or #eatplaylovecork  or just drop me a note to tell me what you thought.

  1.  Thursday 27th July  – Fota Twilight Walk in aid of the Bumbleance.  Bumbleance is the national children’s ambulance service, providing stress-reducing journeys for children in state-of-the-art, safe and fun vehicles.  My God Daughter used this service in the past few months following a spine operation and she absolutely loved it.  Great cause to support in my opinion.
  2. July 29th – Wild Air Run  @Fota House – This looks like great fun.  You need to book it.  All ages (7+) and fitness levels can enjoy Ireland’s first and largest inflatable obstacle course.
  3. July 30th – 7th August – Cork Puppetry Festival – This looks very cool and there are events around Cork for the first week in August also.  Check out the details through the link.
  4. July 30th – Cork LGBT Price Family Fun Day Fitzgerald’s Park.  The Cork LGBT Pride Family Fun Day 12 Noon – 6:00pm at Fitzgerald’s Park.  It is the launch of Cork LGBT Pride Festival with an afternoon of family fun, rainbow festivities, doggy devilery and activities to delight the young, the old, the tame and the bold, from a sensational line up of live music with Phil and the Blanks, The Gypsy Fish Band and a kiddies disco courtesy of the one and only DJ Stevie G.LGBT Family Day
  5. Visit Cobh – Spent a day there this week and the little playground in Kennedy Park on the promenade is lovely and got an ice cream in the ice cream parlour just outside the park, it was delicious.    Lucky enough to be there when a cruise liner was there and the place was buzzing.    Check out the schedule for the boats it is worth going down for a look when one of them is on.  Titanic Experience is suppose to be great also but I think I will wait till my 2 are a bit older to appreciate it.

    All other events I know about are listed on the events page.  I don’t get paid to list these events.

My Top 5 countdown for what to do in Cork this Spectacular July weekend!

If you fancy doing nothing but sitting in your back garden enjoying the weather then absolutely enjoy it!  This is the weather for it but if you fancy getting out and about below are a list of some suggestions.  As always more events listed for the month of July on the events page or check out the PLAY page for some more thoughts on what to do.  Suggestions always welcome.  If you check out any of the above please let me know how you get on through the Facebook page or instagram @eatplaylovecork and hashtag #eatplaylovecork .  This week is the 1 year anniversary of starting this site if you fancy reading The Beginning…..

My Top 5 for the weekend in Cork!

  1.  July 15th -16th – Cork City Spectacular – Free Festival in Fitgeralds Park  I have never been to this festival but from their website it looks like a lot of fun.  My sister was there last year and said it was very full so just be prepared for crowds! “Families will discover and delight in the spectacular as they explore Laya Healthcare’s Greatest Place on Earth. Children and their grown ups will play, dance and create together with free performances and activities with lots of laughs & family fun throughout the weekend!”  It is on in Fitzgerald’s Park which I love.  The playground there is huge with loads of different types of activities for different age groups.  If you are there with more than 1 child on your own, beware it is difficult to stay with multiple if they run in different directions and the playgroud is not enclosed.   If the park gets too jointed and you want to unwind, I think a walk around UCC is gorgeous and call into the Glucksman Gallery perhaps.  Their cafe downstairs is very tasty.  Don’t forget your Parking Disks!!
  2. July 14th – 16th Queen of the Sea Youghal Event is on Fireworks, family fun and more.  Check out their Facebook Page.  If you are in Youghal definitely try the new coffee Shop Priory Coffee on the main street past the ClockGate Tower.  Coffee is delicious.  Decor is gorgeous.
  3. July 15th – 23rd Cork Cycling Festival – For the avid cyclers out there, Check out their website for details of the cycles and join in! Cork Cycling Festival isn’t your average festival. Embrace the fun that can be had in and around cork with others, on your bicycle, roller blades, skateboards and unicycles are welcome.  There are cycles for Beginners, Families, the Curious and Adventourous.Parade-Cycle
  4. July 15th – The Puffin Cafe, Long Strand, Clonakilty is hosting a Baby Rave.  Sounds fun. Open to all ages… A place for the kids to take the parents to enjoy some Music, Lights, Snacks, Soft(ish) Play area and Coffee (for the old folks!).puffin cafe
  5. July 16th – Family Fun Day at the Ladysbridge Loop.  Details on the Flyer below.ladysbridgefamilyfun

I am not paid for any of this advertising.  These are just some suggestions from me.  I hope you enjoy your experience wherever you go but I am sorry if the events don’t live up to expectations.




5 things on around Cork for the First week of the Holidays


Thank you to everyone who has sent me events on for this week.    I really appreciate you sending them on and I am sure everyone who needs some ideas for the start of the summer holidays will also be delighted.   I am not sure how child friendly some of these would be but you can make your own mind up.  I know it is hard to get out of the house with kids.  I only have 2 and I find it a challenge some days.  If you want to skip the events and just go to a playground or beach.  I have some ideas on the PLAY section of the site.  It is as always a work in progress, I am adding more things as the days go on.  Other events I know about over July are listed here.

What else is on this week or over the summer?  Please let me know so I can share.

Wednesday July 5th – Nano Nagle Place –  The Nano Nagle Place on Douglas Street will open up on July 5th with its fascinating heritage centre beautiful gardens and design shop.  I am not sure how family friendly this is as it is only opening but if you go check it out let me know.  Looks like a beautiful piece of Cork heritage.  The cafe isn’t open until Autumn 2017 so maybe bring a picnic.  Price information is here

Wednesday Evenings All Summer – The Lough Ceile – I can’t actually find information for this for 2017 but I have found older material on the internet, but I have it on good authority from an eatplaylove follower there is an open air ceile every Wednesday evening at the Loch.  It sounds like great craic.  It is from 7-9 in the evening so if you want to bring the kids and let them go to bed late might be a fun thing to do with older kids.  If anyone has more information/facebook page etc I could link to this would be useful.

Thursday July 6th – Teddy Bears Picnic at the Donkey Sanctuary I have never been here but I definitely want to try get here over the summer.  5 euro for kids, adults are free.  Some info from their site……The Donkey Sanctuary is set in the beautiful rolling countryside of County Cork just outside the village of Liscarroll in Ireland.  Over 5,200 donkeys from all parts of Ireland have been taken into their care here in Ireland since The Donkey Sanctuary in Ireland was set up.

Saturday July 9th – Blarney in Bloom Summer Garden Fair.  Kids under 12 Go Free.  Haven’t been to Blarney Castle and Gardens in years.  It is also on the bucket list for the summer!


All SummerSt Peter’s Cork exhibition of City by the Sea is on and Free.  I haven’t been to this venue itself but my husband has popped in with the girls.  I think it looks lovely.  Not sure how long smaller kids would be entertained but might be interesting for older kids on their summer holidays!

a city by the sea



5 Events on this weekend in Cork that are family friendly!

  1.  Ballymaloe Malt and Music Festival This is the first year this festival is running.  Tickets from 10- 56 Euro. Children under 12 are admitted free with an adult and are welcome until 9pm. There will be a dedicated children’s area where the little ones can engage in The Brickx Club, a LEGO® building and social activity club for children aged 4 to 12. It runs on Saturday and Sunday from 10am until 5pm and costs €2 per child per hour.   Sounds fun but I still might try to get a babysitter!  ballymaloe malt and music festival
  2. The Cork Dessert Festival is on all week…. Check out one of the participating venues and treat yourselves and the kids to something delicious.  Enjoy the sugar high! I am going to try check out my local Granary Food Store  they always have amazing tasty treats.  Love their family friendly cafe in Midleton.
  3. The launch of the Fairy Garden at Griffins Garden Centre  from 1-3 on Saturday 1st July. Complimentary Fairy Face Painting and Story telling and explore the new Fairy trail.
  4. West Cork Chamber Music Fringe Festival   Ireland’s best young performers will join some of the professional musicians to perform in a series of daily Pop-Ups… check out the link for more details. July 1st – 8th.
  5. West Cork Model Railway Village are hosting a model Show on Sunday 2nd of July 11- 5.  Even if you don’t go this weekend.  Ticket prices available on their website.  I really enjoyed our visit to the model Railway village last year and a trip to Inchydoney breach.
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Check out other things I have listed for the month on the events page 


5 ideas for things to do with the family this weekend.


  1.  Fota House and Gardens is just amazing to walk around and this Saturday Chapterhouse Theatre Company  present an all new production of Peter Pan which sounds cool.
  2. Shandon Street Festival is on which looks like a fun family day out.  Arts and Crafts, Facepainting, Magic shows and more.
  3. Cork Midsummer Festival is still running if you haven’t checked it out already.
  4. The Glucksman has family sundays from 3-4.  This is the second last Sunday that it is running as it finishes on the 2nd of July.img_4231
  5. Get your Garden in shape and head to one of Cork’s lovely Garden Centre’s for a coffee and a browse.  I always find this a good outing with the girls.  I have some listed on  the Outdoor Play area page.

5 things to do in Cork this sunny June weekend

Get the suncream out!  Summer is here in Cork……  

This is a list of things to do this weekend.  As always I have not tried out all the events but I list them so people know whats on in 1 place and they don’t have to go searching through Facebook on Friday night!!  Let me know how you get on if you go to any.

  1. The Cork Summer Show (Saturday 17th and Sunday 18th) We had a great time at this last year.  Kids under 12 go Free.  Definitely try get there early.  Loads to see and do.  Links to the show on the events page.IMG_5930 (1)
  2. Fota Wildlife Park are hosting Punch and Judy Puppet show from Dowtcha Puppets on Saturday the 17th.  Events  Page on EAT PLAY LOVE
  3. The Cork Midsummer Festival is running and has a full list of activities on including the Picnic in the Park @Fitzgeralds Park this weekend from 11.30-4.30 on 18th June.  All links listed on the Upcoming Events 
  4. Official dedication of the Kindred Spirits sculpture in Midleton – If you are from East Cork this sounds pretty cool! The chief of the Choctaw Nation, and a delegation of 15 Choctaw representatives will attend the public ceremony at 2pm at Bailick Park. The event will include traditional Choctaw and Irish music and dancing, as well as several activities around the sculpture and the story. All links listed on the Upcoming Events IMG_3724
  5. Go to The Local Beach!!! Experience the fabulous beaches of Cork.  We are so lucky to live in a place where the beach is never too far away.  I have started to list some here but I need to list some more its on the to do list.  If you have any more suggestions for me please let me know….

A Trip to the Beara Peninsula – 10 Absolute Gems along the way

If the sun shone in Ireland all the time none of us would ever want to go anywhere else……. FACT!……. and enjoying the sunshine in West Cork is something else, the place is just amazing when the sun shines.

We went to the Beara Peninsula in West Cork recently and were lucky enough to get some of the said sunshine and probably all the other seasons on other days… expect this if you are going west and be prepared. Pack for all seasons.   I am slightly bias as I spent a lot of my childhood down this way.   I said I would put up a few of the things we really enjoyed if you are heading down this way over the summer maybe it would be useful.  I’ll also add some links of places that I want to go to in the future but didn’t get them in this time.

Any part of the beautiful Beara Peninsula would be lovely to stay,  Glengariff, Castletownbere, Eyeries, Kenmare…. but we stayed in Allihies a beautiful village on the very tip of the Beara Peninsula.  This truly is the Wild Atlantic Way.

  1.  Allihies

This is a gorgeous little colourful village with 3 pubs, a shop, post office, playground, and the Copper Mines Cafe and Museum with the beautiful Ballydonegan beach about 15 minutes walk away form the village.    The village and surrounding area has a lot to offer for a toddler holiday in my view as it has all the amenities in walking distance if you stay close to the village.   If you don’t want to cook there is O Neills pub,or the Copper Mine Museum Cafe or Veronica’s B & B for eating out, if you want to go the playground just before bed time you can tag team and 1 of you can have a drink across the road in the pub.  The village is a little suntrap when it is out!  I have been going here since I was a child but only found out recently that the Children of Lir are buried here!  The village is steeped in history with the Copper Mines situated on the hills looking over the village.   Ballydonegan beach is the only man made beach in Ireland and it is beautiful, it has really grainy sand, not good for sandcastles but if you go for a walk in it you feel like you have had a foot massage.  Has a bit of an under current so be careful.    You can also do amazing walks around the surrounding areas and the Copper Mine walk up the hill is beautiful with breathtaking views out over the sea.

2.  Eyeries

Eyeries is about 15 km past Allihies and is a lovely drive with breathtaking scenery if you take the coastal road.  It has a lovely playground, if you want to stop for a bite to eat, there is a lovely little place called Eyeries Bistro with gorgeous food and an outdoor covered area which has blackboards and chalk for kids to play with.  Oh we lucked out and ate outside on a glorious evening and the girls played around.  It isnt that often when you can actually enjoy your meal with toddlers rather than horsing it down but the chalkboards kept them very entertained and it was a lovey relaxed evening!  If you go I hope the same happens for you.

3.  Garnish Beaches

As you drive from Allihies over to Garnish in the direction of Dursey Island there is a beautiful spot to look back out over Allihies.  There is a small little inlay where you can park your car for a few minutes and a there is built in stone table to take a few minutes and just take in your amazing surroundings.  There are a couple of beaches in Garnish and they are smaller than the Allihies Ballydonegan Beach so nice for toddlers.   Alternatively if you just want to collect some shells the Pier in Garnish does the trick.  There is Lehanmore Community Centre open for drinks with amazing views on the way to Garnish stop off for a refreshment if you need before you hit the beaches.

4.  Dursey Island

You can continue the drive down from Garnish to Dursey Island and take Ireland’s only cable car over to Dursey Island.   We like driving here and look out onto the island when the girls are napping in the car or get fish and chips from Marge’s chip van which is parked there over the summer. The fish is delicious.   I wasn’t brave enough this time to get the cable car.  I think they would get more craic out of it when they are a bit older so we will hold off.

5.  Healy Pass

This is just a cool drive to do. Warning it is a long and winding road though.  Kids got hungry and needed to Pee on the way to Derreen Gardens from Allihies so we stopped off for an impromtu picnic.  The views on this drive are spectacular.   Extreme caution necessary with wobbly toddlers on these hills.  We had a lob sided picnic but it worked!

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6.  Derreen Gardens

Entry fee 7 euro and 2 for kids.  This was my first visit here and is truly breathtaking.    Gorgeous little cafe with outdoor seating and homemade cakes.   There is a lovely fairy trail scattered around and they give you a map to find them.  Not all the walks are buggy friendly but we managed with a bit of trucking.

7.  Dzogchen Beara

This is a Buddhist retreat centre, and I actually wanted to check myself in for a retreat.  It is on my to do list for the future.  Public is welcome here to visit the cafe and have a look at their breathtaking views.  Food is yum in the cafe.  There is a real peaceful feeling around the whole place.  We sat outside and there are alot of steps so beware of toddlers who are attracted to steps and just want to walk up and down them….. at least you can still enjoy the view while you are doing the walking!

8.  Castletownbere and the Beara Coast Hotel

We had a few blustery days where the beach wasn’t feasible and walking in the wind with toddlers wasn’t really an option so we headed into Castletownhere for a wander we were going to hit a few shops and have lunch somewhere.  We went to the Beara Coast Hotel  and wow was it lovely.   Very family friendly, we had our lunch and then as we tag teamed having a few moments to ourselves. The other went in to the library with the girls.  Such a lovely little space to chill out after lunch for an hour when it is raining outside.  The sun came out and we went for wander outside where the hotel has a lovely view out over the town.  Call into the Coffee House where they serve Badger and Dodo….our favourite.   The evening brightened up and then it was nice to look around the peer with all the boats.  Want to try Ocean Wild next Time we are down

9.  Glengarriff  

Glengarriff is a fantastic place on the Beara way.  We generally stop for a stretch, playground, coffee and a wander but you could actually stay here for a week.  Beautiful walkway down to the water from the playground.  We have yet to do some of the great things to do in Glengariff but these are a few on my bucket list Garnish Island and the Ewe Experience.

10.  Kenmare 

Great place for day trip from Allihies if you aren’t staying here.  It was raining the day we went here but we sat in the window seat of Sheen Falls hotel and got coffee and light lunch and it was great and what a beautiful setting to look over.   Girls made a complete mess on the ground and the staff were so nice.  Also on our to do list for next time is the Seafari.  It is a lovely place to wander around the little shops and cafes.

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  • Allihies and Eyeries Playground
  • Beaches (all over the Beara peninsula but my favourites are Ballydonegan in Allihies and Garnish)
  • Lots of things like SeafariGarnish Island, Ewe Experience (I haven’t actually got to do any of these yet but I hear they are great)

LOVE (these are my favourites)

Check out these links for more places to see, do and eat and sleep.

Beara – A Grand Day Out


Discover Beara 

I am not paid for any of this advertising and it is all my own opinions , I hope you enjoy the trip if you make it.


Top 5 things to do in Cork this weekend.

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Ok I am going to a Hen all weekend, slightly feeling bad as it may rain …..but then again you can never trust the weather forecast in Ireland.

I don’t want them stuck inside so I have made my husband a list.  He is well capable of making up his own mind as to what he can do but I like lists and this way I feel like I tried to contribute a bit to the weekend before I go gallivanting off in the morning!  Did I say I was excited!!!!

  1. Go to the Library. We are overdue with books!  Cork city and county library have great facilities for kids.  I love the Midleton library kids area and when it is raining it is a Godsend.  Joining the library is Free!  Just don’t forget to bring back the books.  Team it with a trip to Midleton market or a coffee/lunch trip to the Granary or Bitesize or insert nice coffee/lunch place in your area.
  2. Go to a play group/class I list some of the classes on my website.  This is a selection of ones on in East Cork but I hope to list more in time.  I have been meaning to try the Carewswood arts and crafts on a Saturday morning for ages.
  3. Go to a MuseumGlucksman has family day out on Sunday @ 3- 4. I love wandering around this museum even when it is not the family hour.  If your kids aren’t the type to tear the exhibitions to pieces I would pop along at anytime and the shop has lovely kids books aswell.  I also have been meaning to do the lifetime lab for ages but haven’t managed it yet.
  4. Go to a Local Event …. Bring the coats, sunhats, suncream, take the umbrellas, pram cover, wet gear and wellies, you never know what the cork weather will bring and brave one of the events on this weekend. Sure it might not rain!
  5. Go to your Mams – Lets be fair this is possibly the best option for him with 2 toddlers.    Alternatively go to an activity Centre

Day Trip to the Deise Greenway!

I am going to start a section for Days out………..these might already feature in the PLAY Indoor and Outdoor Section but it might give a bit more detail on what to do if you are staying there for the day, other places to see nearby and places to eat if you fancy.   Depending on where you are living these might be around the corner for you for an afternoon out or it might be a bit of a trip in the car for a full day out.  Bring the Pyjamas just in case and spend the whole day in the sunny south east and let them fall asleep on the way home.  Love an easy bedtime.  Obviously this only works if your kids are transportable while asleep!

The Waterford Greenway

We did the Waterford Greenway a few weeks ago and it is a great day out.   I am probably a bit bias as my lovely other half is from West Waterford so we have spent quite a bit of time down in this beautiful part of the country over the years.
Part of the Greenway has been opened for a year but the full 46km off-road cycling and walking trail along an old railway line between Waterford and Dungarvan officially opened in March.  We did the section from Durrow to Clonea.   I will focus on this section but I’ll give the links of the official website to find out more of the full stretch as other parts might be more convenient for you.  I plan on doing it lots more times over the summer so if I find out more useful things I will add them on.
1) Rent bikes in Durrow from The Greenway Man.  We rented little trailer for the girls which was great.  It is worth giving a call ahead of arriving to check bike availability.   The little trailers are cool for under 5’s.  My 3 year was absolutely in her element.  The one year old needed some bribes as she was wondering what the hell was going on.  If you can bring your own bikes this obviously keeps down the expense, I was even half thinking of investing in a little trailer so we can bring our own next time!
2) Get a Playground visit in!  Always keeps my 2 happy so we did this first.
We brought a packed lunch and ate it at the picnic benches at the playground close to where you enter from the Durrow side.  (I heard that this playground may be moving……so I’ll update if I know more)
3) Cycling through the Ballyvoyle Tunnel is a highlight of this section.  Quite dark but the girls thought it was great fun as it echoes all the way through.  We came out the other end and it actually felt we were in the tropics, the greenery is amazing.
4) As you cycle down out of the tunnel the views of Clonea strand and west Waterford coastline take your breath away.    It was a beautiful day when we did it and I actually felt like I was on holidays.  I think part of this section could do with a sit down area as I just wanted to stop and sit and look at the beautiful view for awhile.
5) Don’t forget you have to go back! Now I must say I wouldn’t have minded the car to be brought to me by the time I got to Clonea as I am not the fittest.   You have to go back to collect the car so don’t wear the kids out too much or the journey back will be painful.  Don’t forget the water, snacks and a few bribes if you need them to get you there and back!
So I have not done the other sections, they are on my to do list and I think the next time I will start in Kilmacthomas and get the Viaduct in.  I also must try this new coffee shop next time I am down in Kilmacthomas looks great.
Coach House Coffee. I hear it has a bouncing castle!
Here is the official site for more information.

EATING…… If you want to go back into Dungarvan for a quick bite then this beautiful little town won’t let you down, there are some great places.

1)   Merrys Pub  – We eat here a lot when in Dungarvan and it is a family friendly and very tasty with nice wine and beer if you are not the designated driver for the day!
2) The Interlude  – Delicious variety of dishes and definitely worth a visit.
3) The Moorings – family friendly and has a beer garden.
4) The Tannery – if you want a bit of fine dining.  It is a great experience but I probably wouldn’t bring tired kids there as the food is too nice! Maybe come here an evening on your own.