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GO Kids & Families in Belfast

Family Days Out in Belfast An exciting visit to Belfast is sure to put smiles on little faces as there’s so much to see and do.

If the little darlings are behaving like a pack of wild animals, perhaps a visit to the zoo would be apt. The world famous Belfast Zoo [map], Antrim Road, is a massive 50 acre site providing a safe haven for more than 160 species of rare or highly endangered animals who are housed in comfortable enclosures that replicate their natural environments.

And a visit to the zoo wouldn’t be complete without popping into the monkey park and watching the awesome gorillas, or checking out the underwater view of penguins and sea lions. There’s also a restaurant, snack shop, free parking and plenty of public toilets.

On a similar note, get a glipse into the treasures of the deep with a visit to Exploris Aquarium [map], The Ropewalk, Castle Street, Portaferry. This is Northern Ireland’s only public aquarium and seal sanctuary, and is located on the shores of the Marine Nature Reserve of Strangford Lough.

This interactive centre demonstrates life under the Irish sea and there’s plenty of opportunities for the kids to interact with a variety of living marine animals. You can also see the good work that the sanctuary does to care for Northern Ireland’s sick and orphaned seals.

See the living world in close up detail by visiting the Sheridan Imax Cinema [map], The Odyssey Pavilion, Queen’s Quay. The massive surround sound screen brings all the excitement closer to home.

Keep young brains active during the school holidays by dropping into WhoWhatWhereWhenWhy, also known as W5 [map], Queen’s Quay. This amazing centre – part museum and part adventure – is great fun for adults and children.

Billed as Ireland’s first purpose-built interactive discovery centre, there’s plenty to see and do jam-packed into 140 interactive exhibitions spread over five areas. In “Wow”, create cool cloud rings and watch the fire tornado rise to the ceiling. In “Start” you will find a world of wonder where youngsters can build a house, make a splash and dance to music. Visit “Go” where you can make and race your own cars and boats. Discover “See” and boggle your mind with optical illusions. You can also be creative and make your very own animated film in “Do”.

If your children are particularly active they’re sure to have a fun time at Dundonald International Ice Bowl [map], Old Dundonald Road. Just five miles from the city centre Dundonald International Ice Bowl is one of the area’s premier leisure and entertainment facilities.

With an Olympic-size ice rink, ten-pin bowling alley, indoor adventure world, and a tasty burger joint, this is a great place for the whole family to enjoy. You could even make this the base for your holiday as there’s a four-star caravan park on the site.

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