Cracking Easter events in Northern Ireland

Full steam ahead for Easter
Jenny Lee

Easter is an ‘eggciting’ time to get out and about with friends and family. A host of Easter egg hunts and fun events are planned across the north of Ireland.

For something different, how about an Easter steam train ride, with the Easter Bunny, face painting and chocolate? Downpatrick and County Down Railway’s Easter Eggspress runs over Easter weekend, and offers a fun experience for all the family. Younger visitors will enjoy a visit to the model railway and the opportunity to drive a train.

Meet Easterella, the Easter fairy, The Mad Hatter, Peter Rabbit, Poppy the Troll and a host of other characters at Galgorm Castle Fairy Trail, Ballymena, during their Easter Eggstravaganza event on April 8. The Easter Bunny will be searching in the meadow for eggs and needs the children to help find them, whilst Mr Funny Bones will entertain groups with magic tricks and puppetry. There will also be inflatable fun and a fun golf area.

Spring time is the perfect time to visit an open farm and see the newborn lambs and chicks. At Trench Farm in Ballycastle you will be able to bottle feed the baby goats and lambs, walk alpacas and go on an Easter egg hunt. There will also be crafts in their fun barn and bouncy castles.

Lamb bottle feeding is in full swing at The Ark Open Farm


Amongst the farm animals, rather unusual creatures are lurking at The Ark Open Farm in Newtownards. From April 1 to 16, visitors can encounter some friendly dinosaurs and have some roar-some Easter adventure. Children can also go on a dino egg trail, unearth fossils in the dig pit, cuddle baby chicks and rabbits and hop onboard a tractor trailer ride or quad barrel ride for a whizz around the farm.

Re-opening in April, after three years, HMS Caroline, offers a unique opportunity to experience life aboard a ship largely intact from the day it was completed in 1914. Located in Belfast’s Titanic Quarter, the refurbished floating museum gives visitors an opportunity to crack codes, send signals, fire torpedoes and steer the ship in its virtual access suite.


HMS Caroline in Belfast's Titanic Quarter offers plenty of hands-on interactive experiences for all the family


An immersive cinematic experience puts visitors right at the heart of the action of the Battle of Jutland in 1916, while they can explore the sights, sounds and smells of the engine room. A bumper Easter weekend of activities will also take place from April 7 – 10, with puppetry, face painting; storytelling; sea shanties and arts and crafts. There will also be an HMS Caroline Easter Trail running until April 16.

Let’s Go Hydro resort and water park, outside Belfast reopens with a giant Easter Egg Hunt and Farmfest.  With 10,000 Cadbury Easter Eggs, a few golden eggs waiting to be found in ‘eggschange’ for a special prize, there are lots of chocolate adventures to be had. As well as meeting farmyard animals and the Easter Bunny, visitors can have a go on boats, water tractors, family yoga, roller disco and egg rolling.

The National Trust NI have a number of Easter activities running across their sites, including their annual egg hunts which celebrate nature, history and beauty. At Castle Ward in County Down, enjoy Easter crafts and puppetry, fancy dress, horse and carriage rides, live music and learn how your chocolate egg is made at the chocolate forest barn.


Easter eggs up for grabs in the National Trust egg hunts


For lots more Easter events visit