Why go?

If you don't want to travel far but want to show the kids more of the history of the British Isles, then take them to Ireland's capital, Dublin. With It's fun Irish personality, friendly people and great family activities will have the kids shrieking with fun, from a tour on the water on a WW2 vehicle across the capital to learning the techniques of traditional Gaelic sports, kids of all ages will be suitably entertained.

Who is it good for? Take kids from eight years and up, they'll be interested enough to take in the history of the city, and able enough to walk round the sites for most of the day.

Activities

For a fun introduction to Dublin’s Viking past take a Viking Splash Tour on a WW2 war vehicle, which drives on land before plunging into the water.

The guides are all in character, so it's pure theatre on board, and the kids will love the rickety boat ride around the city's sites.

Ireland also enjoys a unique sporting heritage and the Gaelic Games Centre, in the northern side of the city, offers visitors a chance to learn and practice the techniques of hurling, Gaelic football and handball - here, both girls and boys are more than catered for.

On a dry day, it’s well worth visiting the Dublin Zoo, to experience both the zoo and the beautiful Phoenix Park it's housed in. The zoo also has several food outlets in its grounds.

Where to eat

Head to Temple Bar - it has a reputation as being the bachelor and hen party area of Dublin, but it’s also a vibrantly active cultural area.

Visit in the daytime and savour the family-friendly atmosphere, and as it's pedestrianised, young children can let off a little steam.

It’s true that there are a lot of pubs in this area, but parents and children will enjoy the menu and location of Elephant and Castle.

This restaurant, located just off Temple Bar Square, is popular with tourists and Dubliners alike. Our top tip, try the chicken wings.

The lowdown

How to get there: British Airways flies from London Heathrow to Dublin; from £100 return.

Travel time: A flight from London Heathrow takes 1 hour and 15 minutes.

Where to stay: Nearly all of Dublin’s hotels are child friendly. Castleknock Hotel & Country Club has a large indoor heated pool. Family packages start from €110 per night. For families travelling with babies and toddlers, book a two bedroom River Suite at The Clarence from €499 per night. It provides lots of facilities for families including cots, sterilisers and other treats.