Luxury Guided Tour of Ireland's Hidden Gems with Irish expert Susan Byron - New Tour Dates announced for 2018 - 2017 Tour Dates Sold Out

Family Holiday

A family holiday in an Irish farmhouse is a great way for children to experience nature at first hand. I will never forget the expression on my young sons face when he bottle fed a baby lamb for the first time, I don’t know who was more thrilled about that particular Kodak moment, me or him? but I was next up for a go! We were staying in an Irish farmhouse bed and breakfast one Easter, while visiting relatives in the West of Ireland who just happened to be ‘lambing down’ over a 1000 sheep, most of which were having twins! Apart from being a wondrous experience for children (of all ages) it is a great opportunity to get up close and personal with nature and in my mind the best kind of family holiday to have in Ireland. As parents well know, once the little ones are entertained, even if it is only by the farm cats, dogs and chickens, all is well with the world. And while young children may well know where their milk, yogurt and cheese comes from, how often do they actually get to feed the hens or gather their own egg for breakfast.....

feeding the hens

And while I would be the first to admit that 24/7, 365 days of the year commitment would not suit me at all, I always have a better appreciation of the effort farmers put into producing the highest quality food for Irish tables, after a visit. Another novelty for city dwellers staying on a farm is having have so much open space at their disposal, a fact most farming families seem to take for granted when their nearest neighbour could be miles away instead of just over the garden fence. And while images of large homey, kitchens with tables laden down with food might have been a rarity a few years ago, with many farmers wives having to rejoin the workforce, with the recession cutting deep into other sources of income, jam and bread making for local farmers markets has become very popular once again. Alongside more more innovative ideas like foraging and sheepdogs trials which are taking off faster than Shep around the country....

New born calf

The best time to go for the newborn, bottle fed experience is obviously spring, most Irish farmhouse bed & breakfasts stay open all year round but those that don’t will definitely be up and running for St Patricks Day (17th March) or Easter at the latest and on into May. But there is always something going on a farm that will amuse children (and adults) such as hay cutting or more correctly silage making in May and June which these days mostly involves contracted machine drivers coming on to the farm to cut grass and bale it (for next winters feed) which is guaranteed to keep little tykes amused for a couple of hours watching (from a safe distance) the giant yellow and green John Deere tractors coming and going. And any dairy farm will be more than happy to give you a guided tour of the milking process which still goes on twice a day, 365 days without fail, God Bless them.... 

Silage making

B&Bs in Ireland

For more family things to do and see in Ireland please click here.

Irelands Hidden Gems