Trails & Events

Heritage Week at Birr Castle
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We are constantly updating our events page, below is what is planned so far for this year: In the meantime it’s best to follow us on our Facebook page to keep up to-date with our events. Or sign up for our email newsletter here.


Christmas Cracker Jack Challenge

Wednesday 08 December – Thursday 06 January (except 25 & 26 Dec and 01 Jan)

Daily 09:00 to 16:00

Included in General Admission price

Safe festive fun searching for the Christmas crackers that Cracker Jack lost in the gardens.  Pick up your trail and pencil at reception, and head off in search of the hidden crackers.  There’s a little treat if you find them all!

Pre-booking is not essential.  Tickets are available online or at reception on arrival.  Children must be supervised at all times.


The Red Tree Trail

We are excited to introduce you to The Red Tree Trail. This trail is new for 2021 and includes 65 Trees of distinction.

Covering over 5 km this might be a trail you can enjoy over multiple visits. The Trail is included in your general admission ticket prices and you can pick up a map at reception.

For further information and a map, please view our PDF brochure.


The X-Trails Solar Trail  

NEW for 2021 and included in your general admission ticket.

Walk the Solar Trail and experience the size, distance and scale of our Solar System along the 2km route. Be inspired and gain a new perspective and appreciation of the planets, our Sun and our place in space.

Challenge sheets are available at reception on arrival, and the trail is included in the General Admission fee.  Suitable for ages 7 and above.


Forest Bathing

At Birr Castle Demesne, a fallen tree near the fernery, with sunlight coming through the branches, birdsong and flowing water sounds in the background awaits you. This is just one area in Birr Castle Demesne in which you can try your hand at the Japanese spiritual practice of shinrin-yoku or Forest Bathing, which literally means taking in the forest through our senses.

Over the past year, many of us have become aware that spending mindful time in the woods is beneficial for both the body and the soul. The practice of shinrin-yoku, literally, forest bath, is understood in Japanese culture to be a critical factor in the fight against diseases, of the mind and body, boosting the immune system, lowering blood pressure, and aiding sleep.

Visit Birr Castle Demesne today and try the practice of Forest Bathing.

Forest Bathing is included with General Admission tickets.


The Gallery Challenge

Do you have a science or astronomy buff on your hands? Looking for something fun to do on a rainy or cold day? Or just want to learn more about the achievements and history of Birr Castle Demesne and the Parsons family during your visit? 

Wander through our seven Science Galleries where you will find the answers written along the walls and hidden among the displays. Starting from our Welcome Video in the first gallery, continuing upstairs where you will find more answers along with a Hologram of Mary Rosse, the Third Countess located inside the Oldest Darkroom in the World. Finish in the Engineering Gallery where you will discover the achievements of the world-famous inventor, Charles Parsons.

The Gallery Challenge can be picked up at reception on arrival, and is included in the General Admission fee. Suitable for all ages.



The Quest

Returning in Spring 2022

For those interested in nature, discovery and adventure, Birr Castle Demesne Centre is the place for you. The team have created the “Family Quest” which will take the young and maybe not so young explorers on a journey through time, from great engineering feats to wildlife discoveries, and many more highlights in between.

The Quest can be picked up at reception on arrival and is included in the General Admission fee. Suitable for all ages.

Unavailable in winter months. 

St. Patrick’s Weekend March 2022

Snake Trail 17-20 March from 10.00 to 16.00

Our trail of slithering snakes will lead you through the gardens and Treehouse adventure playground of Birr Castle Demesne. Can you find the snakes that St. Patrick left behind?

Find them all and discover their secret message to claim your sweet treat.

Trail included in admission price. Suitable for all ages. Trail will be available from reception.

No booking required but places are limited and based on a first come basis.

Easter Egg Hunt 2022

Easter Sunday 17 April from 12.00 until 15.00

Birr Castle Demesne is the place for you this Easter break. During your Easter trail you will meet with The Easter Bunny who will be joined by Henny Penny, Larry the Lamb, Quackers the Duck and the Mad Hatter.  Once you complete the trail you can pick up your Easter Egg from the Mad Hatter…all going well!

Pre-booking will be required for the Easter Egg Hunt, limited space available.

Bookings will open in early 2022.  

Castle Tour with General Admission 2022

Returning in May 2022

Guided tours of the interior of Birr Castle will run Monday to Saturday throughout May, June, July & August, with tours running at 10:00, 11:30 & 13:00 daily.

On your tour of the castle your guide will lead you through a number of beautiful rooms while enlightening you on the history, the family, key pieces of furniture, and the collection of treasures within the rooms.

Pre-booking is essential for castle tours, and tours are suitable for age 12 upwards.

Bookings will open in Spring 2022.

Outdoor Guided Discovery Tour 2022

Fridays and Saturdays June to September at 12.00 and 15.00

This fascinating 60 minute guided tour focuses on the rich hertiage and phenomenal achievements in science, astronomy, photography, engineering, and botany attributed to the Parsons family who have lived at Birr Castle for 400 years. Gain profound insights into the family and castle history, view the awe-inspiring Great Telescope of 1845 – the biggest in the world for over 70 years, followed by seasonal highlights in the gardens. After your tour enjoy free time in the 120-acre parkland and award-winning gardens with more than 4000 species of trees and plants.

Castle interiors not included. Pre-booking is highly recommended.

Bookings will open in Spring 2022.

Guided Garden Tour 2022

New for 2022 – Coming soon

The Guided Garden Tour is a 90-minute tour of the seasonal garden highlights of the demesne, led by a dedicated member of our garden team. Explore the award-winning gardens and parklands on this breath-taking 120-acre (50-hectares) demesne, with a collection of over 4,000 trees and plants from the four corners of the world.  Breathe deep and feel the connection with nature within magical surroundings that celebrate the Parsons Family’s 400-year commitment to horticulture and botany. Free time following your tour allows you explore further this amazing demesne, science galleries, Great telescope and I-LOFAR. The tour guide will focus on best in season at the time of your tour.

Pre-booking is highly recommended.

50th Irish Hot Air Ballooning Championships 

This event is postponed until 2022. Details to follow. 

 Ballooning is 100% weather dependent and subject to quite strict weather conditions.

It is not possible to provide flights to the public during the week however it is a fun, social event for everyone’s enjoyment, so get your cameras ready and capture some great shots for the album.