Take a look at the list below and start planning how you want to spend those golden summer days with your friends and family
The Montenotte Summer Sculpture Exhibition: All through July to late August
Held at the Victoria Sunken Garden at The Montenotte Hotel in Cork, the fifth annual Summer Sculpture Exhibition features 39 pieces from 20 artists and will run from now until late August.
Centred upon the theme of humour, imagination and joy this year, the spectacular collection includes contemporary pieces from some of the best and emerging Irish and international sculptors – including one by Dawn Conn, a UK-based artist who most recently exhibited at Chelsea Flower Show and Dublin’s Bord Bia Bloom. Visit themontenottehotel.com for more details.
Imelda May at Kilkenny Outdoor Music Festival: 1 July
If you’re a music-lover looking for the perfect weekend away, we think we’ve found it for you. The Kilkenny Outdoor Music Festival will take place in the heritage town of Castlecomer with Imelda May and special guests Róisín O, Monroe and DJ Josie taking to the stage on Saturday, 1 July.
Guests can check in for a two-night stay at the four-star Avalon House Hotel, located in the heart of Castlecomer, and enjoy a delicious breakfast each morning plus tickets to the festival, all from €129 per person sharing. Visit avalonhousehotel.ie for more information on this offer.
Síog by Freshly Ground Theatre Company: 1, 2, 8, 9 July
If your children are captivated by magic and fairies, they’ll love this! Síog is a magical outdoor adventure for children of all ages and their families set in the Fairy Garden in Tymon Park in Tallaght.
Based in Tallaght, the Freshly Ground Theatre Company has developed a means for us to talk about the theme of sustainability with children. The company is interested in the fairy as a symbol for the protection of the natural environment so have developed an ongoing programme of works for young people and their families centring on the place of the fairy in contemporary Ireland. The current production in Tymon Park of Sióg is a full-length, immersive and interactive live outdoor performance in the fairy trail in Tymon North Park, alongside a full installation taking over the park. Click here for ticket information.
Clonmel Junction Arts Festival: 1 – 9 July
With talks, workshops, aerial dance from Fidget Feet, an exhibition trail, piano sessions, an homage to showbands and a nightly music trail, this festival has it all.
Clonmel Junction Arts Festival is dedicated to bringing out the fun, inspiration, and creativity in Clonmel and has been held every July since 2001. The Festival Hub at Kickham Barracks Plaza will be the heart of the festival, taking over the town for ten great days. See junctionfestival.com for further details.
Cairde Sligo Arts Festival: 1 – 9 July
This is a family-friendly arts festival with many events catering especially for young audiences. It features nine days of incredible art in buildings, on the street and in magical outdoor locations. Some of the impressive acts there include Loah, Plúirín na mBan (traditional Irish folk songs fused with contemporary influences), The Hare (world premiere of new theatre) and Freedom Letters (poetic-musical composition about the lives of Constance Markievicz and Valeria O’Connor-Vilinska).
One of the highlights of this year’s programme is Cairde in the Park – an immersive and fun filled two-day event filled with circus, music, walkabout acts, interactive games and family wellness workshops. For more information about the festival, visit cairdefestival.com or follow along on social media.
The Yoga Picnic Festival: 2 July
This one-day festival returns to Lilliput House, Co Westmeath for the second time, bringing together Ireland’s top yoga teachers and offering a diverse range of classes for students of all levels.
Expect an exciting day of yoga, movement, breath-work, meditation, ecstatic dance and wellness talks, as well as sound-baths, reiki, paddle-board yoga, soulful Kirtan (yoga music concert) and fun-filled, mindful activities for kids. Or you can just relax in the Driftwood Sauna by the lake! See theyogapicnic.com for more information.
Art Exhibition at Ballymaloe Grainstore: 2 July – 7 Aug
If you’re interested in art, Alana James and seven other artists are holding their first exhibition in July at The Grainstore in Ballymaloe, east Cork. The team at Ballymaloe is inviting everyone to come to this beautiful part of the country to enjoy a wonderful day out and appreciate an art exhibition dedicated to celebrating life!
Follow on social media for more details.
Celebrating the Spirit of the Good Friday Agreement: Making Space for Diversity: 5 July
Women from diverse communities across the island of Ireland will gather in Newry on 5 July to celebrate the Good Friday Agreement, at this NWC All-Island Women’s Forum event.
Taking place between 11am and 3pm, speakers on the day will include: Eileen Weir – Shankill Women’s Centre, Eileen Chan Hu – CRAICNI, Caroline Munyi – AkiDwA, Nicole Parkinson Kelly – Northern Ireland Youth Forum and Eilish Rooney – UUJ Transitional Justice Institute. Find out more on nwci.ie
The Taming of the Shrew as part of the Kilruddery Summer Events Programme: 5 July
From a Flower Crown Workshop to celebrate Midsummer, a long-table pizza picnic with Pizza Shed, outdoor theatre in the Sylvan Theatre, family days and so much more, there is something for all ages and interests this summer at Killruddery. The event we’re most excited about though is Balally Players’ three-night run of Shakespeare’s The Taming of the Shrew.
Ticket holders are invited to pack a picnic and throw down their blankets for an evening of theatre as the sun goes down. There are also refreshments available in Killruddery’s Tea Room before the performance. See kilruddery.com for more.
Woodfired dining at The Fiery: 7 – 8 July
Foodies, this one is for you. With wild destination dining more popular than ever, you’re in for a real treat this July as The Wicklow Escape launches its latest culinary adventure.
Combining exclusive fine dining with outdoor adventure, the hotly anticipated Woodfired Dining at the Fiery sees Chef Nico Reynolds create a bespoke menu featuring delicious recipes that have been created using a number of locally sourced ingredients. The Woodfired Weekend package also includes an optional overnight or two-night stay at The Wicklow Escape’s stunning Garden rooms as well as access to the Woodfired Hot Tub plus breakfast the following morning. Click here for more details.
Shelter at The National Gallery of Ireland: 8 July
A brand new exhibition showcasing the work of an exciting group of contemporary artists, opens on Sat 8 July. Situated in the Print Gallery, Shelter provides an opportunity for visitors to explore art created by five women artists who formed a collective in the midst of the global pandemic. The five members are Diana Copperwhite, Allyson Keehan, Niamh McGuinne, Sharon Murphy and Geraldine O’Neill and each artist is showing three pieces in a wide range of media. The free exhibition will run until the middle of November.
See nationalgallery.ie for more details
In the Middle of the Fields at West Cork Fit Up Festival: 11 – 15 July
Starring Kathy Rose O’Brien, Mark O’Regan and Seamus Moran, this groundbreaking production is directed by Joan Sheehy who will be joined by an award-winning creative team: Paul Keogan, Colin Dunne, composer Tom Lane and musician Dermot Dunne. Audiences can expect a unique atmospheric experience that harks back to the theatre fit-up tradition of the 1940s ands 1950s, but with a vivid, contemporary staging. See fit-uptheatrefestival.com for updates.
‘Fundrum’ Family Festival at Dundrum Town Centre: 14 – 19 July
If you and your family are in the Dundrum area around the middle of the month, you won’t want to miss this! This six-day complimentary festival will have an incredible line up of live acts such as the Dino Live Experience, family yoga and fitness classes, Jack Wise the Magician, Kealan Doyle with his Sea Horse Aquariums and many more. These acts along with further interactive activities such as hip-hop classes with Rachel Fisher and Super Sensory classes for the little ones will take place from 10am – 5pm each day in Pembroke Square. As well as that, for the first time, Dundrum Town Centre will host a sensory class for children with autism.
See dundrum.ie for further information.
The Barretstown Big Picnic 2023: 16 July
If you want to enjoy a fun day out while also contributing to an incredibly worthy cause, events don’t come much better than this one.
The Barretstown Big Picnic is back with a bang and promises to be bigger and better than ever! There is a fantastic line-up of activities for all to enjoy from spectacular acts at Fossett’s Circus to mind-blowing magicians, trapeze artists, face-painting, music, dance and much more. A pop-up Teddy Bear Hospital will also be on-site to nurse sick teddies back to health.
All visitors need to do is pack the sunblock and a picnic basket and blanket and get set for a superb family day out for both young and old alike. Go to barretstown.org for more information.
Lunchtime comedy at The Kings Head, Galway: 17 – 30 July
This July you can catch some of Ireland’s best comedians up close and personal in the intimate surrounds of the Ruby Room on the top floor of the 800-year-old Kings Head pub. It has been a venue for lunchtime comedy during the Galways International Arts Festival (GIAF) for over 30 years. This summer it will play host to top comedy acts including Ross Browne, Anna Clifford, Neil Delamere, Emma Doran, Chris Kent, Aideen McQueen, Colm O’Regan and Karl Spain plus many more performing in the smallest room they will play this year, or any year.
Woodie’s Heroes Campaign: 19 July – 12 August
If you’re in your local Woodie’s over this time, be sure to support the annual Woodie’s Heroes campaign!
It is the 9th year of the campaign which has raised €3 million for Irish children’s charities since 2015. This year’s beneficiaries are ISPCC Childline, Autism Assistance Dogs Ireland, Down Syndrome Ireland and Make-A-Wish Ireland. You can donate at the till in your local Woodie’s store, scan the iDonate QR code online or, if not in store, can text to donate. 100% of donations go directly to the charities and are divided equally among them.
Wedding Secrets, Unveiled: An Evening with Chupi Sweetman and guests: 20 July
If you’re a bride-to-be, you won’t want to miss this gorgeous event!
In celebration of wedding season, Chupi Sweetman is hosting an intimate evening in conversation with international wedding photographer Jenny McCarthy, Nicky Dwyer from online fashion rental platform Drobey, wedding planner Maria Reidy and wedding florist Emma Rose. Taking place on Thursday 20 July, from 6-8pm at the Chupi flagship store in Powerscourt Centre, Dublin, the panel will be discussing everything from tips on how to plan the perfect day, the benefits of dressing sustainably as a wedding guest, and what floral colour palette to commit to.
Click here for more information.
Forest Fest: 21 – 23 July
Affectionately known as Ireland’s ‘easiest’ festival that combines the glory days of the Féile with the buzz of Electric Picnic, this three-day fiesta is aimed at music fans over 30 and their families.
Now in its second year, organisers have secured New York folk great Suzanne Vega, Scottish duo The Proclaimers and Ireland’s very own Bell X1 to perform at the midlands festival in the historic village of Emo, Co Laois. See forestfest.ie for more details.
An evening of Art and Music at Oldbridge House: 27 July
Award-winning artist Niamh McCann is joining forces with Venice Biennale architect Peter Carroll and Grammy nominated Iarla Ó Lionáird (The Gloaming) for an exclusive evening of art and music at Ireland’s only octagon-walled garden.
To celebrate the commission and collaboration, Solstice Arts Centre is hosting the first presentation of this project, a summer evening of art, spoken word and music with a drinks reception and musical performance set in the stunning surroundings of the walled garden at Battle of the Boyne, Oldbridge House, Co Meath on 27 July at 7pm. See solsticeartcentre.ie for more information.
Live on the Harbour in Dun Laoghaire: 27 – 29 July
If you live in the area or are visiting Dun Laoghaire at the end of the month, be sure to check out this new outdoor music festival series. Set in one of the most scenic and beloved destinations overlooking the Irish Sea, it will play host to three unique events over the end of July that will feature a diverse line-up of pop, EDM and rap royalty from home and abroad.
See liveontheharbour.com for more details.