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The summer holidays are here and, for those looking for inspiration, we have plenty of activities to keep your kids entertained and happy

Get sporty

If the Olympics has sparked excitement in your household, then why not hold your own kids’ mini Olympics outside with friends or siblings? As well as easy-to-recreate sports, such as the 100m race, you can let your imagination run wild, using a Frisbee for the discus, tennis ball for the shotput and hurdles made from cardboard boxes! There’s even some crafty fun to be had if you let the kids decorate cardboard ‘medals’ or cups to act as trophies ahead of the main event.

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Foodie fun

Whether it’s baking fairy cakes or adding their own toppings to pizzas, kids love to get involved in the kitchen – and if their creation works for lunch or dinner afterwards, you’re killing two birds with one stone! Get them involved with simple tasks such as cutting pastry or dough with cutters, washing salad, counting out ingredients and stirring up dressings. As well as keeping your little ones entertained, you’ll also help set them up with cookery skills for life.

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Splash around

A swim at the local leisure centre is definitely one of the more budget-friendly activities available during the holidays, but there are plenty of other ways to have fun with water at home. Get the paddling pool, hosepipe and sprinklers out to create your own water park in the garden (swimwear obligatory!), fill some washing up bowls with soapy water and set the kids to work cleaning bikes, the car or even their toys – you’ll be surprised how well it occupies them.

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Green fingers

From planting flowers in pots on a balcony to watering vast borders of greenery, there are plenty of gardening tasks the kids can get involved with. If you’re lucky enough to have a garden, they’re a great place for kids to while away summer day; try challenging them to build a tent on the lawn, throw a picnic or use chalk to decorate the patio. Just don’t forget plenty of SPF!

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Out and about

Days out with kids can definitely be expensive. However, there’s plenty you can do that won’t break the bank. A trip to the library is free – why not set your kids a summer reading challenge to fuel their literary passions? Likewise, many museums and art galleries in Ireland are free, and offer child-friendly days and activities on their websites.

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Words: Sophie Hines