7 Family-Friendly Hotels In Ireland With Swimming Pools
When it comes to staycations with the smallies there are certain requirements I expect from hotels, especially here in Ireland. To me, kids clubs are an added bonus upon booking, especially when they run off-season.
However, you can be guaranteed if our mini break destination does not have a swimming pool, it won't be top of our list. Realistically when you think about it, if the good old Irish weather plays up to its usual tricks, you are pretty much screwed!
Here are seven of our favourite child-friendly hotels with swimming pools located across the Emerald Isle.
1. Hodson Bay, Westmeath
Located on the shores of Lough Ree, the Hodson Bay in Athlone has a 20-metre indoor swimming pool with a kids pool area both with stunning lake views. Children are welcome daily from 9am-7pm. Other facilities for adults include a hydro pool, airbeds, steam room and sauna.
It's also worth mentioning the largest inflatable water park resides on the doorstep of the hotel where you can rent canoes, peddle boats and kayaks - a little something extra especially if you are vacationing with teenagers during the summer months.
2. Newpark Hotel, Kilkenny
Situated on Castlecomer Road, the Newpark Hotel is the perfect location for exploring Kilkenny however, the estate is full of activities for kids of all ages - so you may never want to leave. Resting on 40 acres of lush, green parkland, this hotel has dedicated family rooms, a wildlife farm, an action-packed kids club, an adventure playground, a fairy trail and of course a swimming pool.
The pool opens daily between 9am-7pm and a parent or guardian must accompany children under the age of 5 in the water at all times. There is a sauna, steam room, jacuzzi, infinity pool and gym on site, however, children under the age of 16 are not permitted.
3. Redcastle, Donegal
With its stunning waterfront location overlooking Lough Foyle on the Inishowen Peninsula, the Redcastle Hotel offer superb family packages which include a kids club during Easter holidays and the summer months.
The indoor swimming pool opens daily from 10am-12.30pm and 4pm-7pm. During the warmer months families can enjoy a paddle and play in the picturesque lake right on its doorstep - a bucket and spade is a must.
4. The Connacht, Galway
One of the top attractions at this family-friendly hotel is without a doubt their extensive 20-metre heated swimming pool and dedicated children's pool which open daily from 8am-8pm. Other facilities include a 24-hour gym, sauna, steam room and jacuzzi.
During high season and weekends, kids can join Friendly Fellows, an action-packed kids club bursting with activities suitable for guests aged 3 and above.
5. The Lakeside Hotel & Leisure Centre, Clare
Sitting on the banks of the River Shannon, the Lakeside Hotel has a 40-metre swimming with a water slide offering all sorts of thrills to water enthusiasts. Children swim times are limited between 10am-7.30-pm daily.
All children staying get complimentary milk and cookies at bedtime and DVD players are available from reception with a large selection of DVD's to choose from.
6. Kelly's Hotel, Wexford
Overlooking beautiful sandy beaches, Kelly's Resort Hotel in Rosslare has a 12-metre leisure pool opening daily between 7am-8pm.
Also on site is an extensive club which offers a daily programme for children aged 4 and over with activities including playdough, painting, games, sports, storytelling and more. The hotel also offers a complimentary child minding service each evening so parents can dine in peace between 7pm-9pm. As an added bonus, they serve children's dinner at 5.30pm each evening followed by a disco, however, parental supervision is required during mealtimes.
7. Quality Hotel Youghal, Cork
The Quality Hotel & Leisure Centre located on Redbarn Beach is a haven for water lovers as it sits a stone's throw away from the beach and boasts a 20-metre, 8 deck level indoor heated pool including a children's play pool with 0.5-metre depth.
A kids club runs daily during school holidays and weekends from 11am-3pm for a little as €10 per child. The child-friendly hotel also host cinema clubs, soccer tournaments and disco each weekend during the summer months - the perfect excuse for a staycation this year!
Other family-friendly hotels with swimming pools in Ireland include Amber Springs Hotel in Wexford, Fota Island Resort in Cork, Dingle Skellig Hotel in Kerry, Druid's Glen Resort in Wicklow, Treacy's West County Hotel in Clare, Breaffys House Hotel in Castlebar, Hotel Westport in Mayo and Mount Wolseley in Carlow.
Always remember, before you hit the road always query swim hat policies in advance as some hotel require hats for health and safety reasons. Otherwise, you could be forking out up to €4 a hat in some hotels.
It's also good to ask the parent to child ratio when using swimming pool facilities in hotels upon booking. Typically in Ireland, it is one adult to two children under five. Knowing the rules before you travel may just save a meltdown or two at the poolside, trust me it happens more than you might think.
Kellie Kearney is a Dublin mammy of 4 kids aged 2, 3, 4 and 9. Described as a self-confessed procrastinator and picker-upper of things, Kellie loves to travel and share her every day true to life moments of her growing family on Instagram.