How to have an eggs-cellent Easter
There's a cracking programme of events taking place across Ireland this festive season. Chrissie Russell gets the low-down for us
From family fun and wonderful walks to reggae festivals, prawn shelling and chicken races – there's a cracking programme of EGGCELLENT events taking place across Ireland this Easter.
An egg-travaganza of Easter fun ...
* Meet the newborn animals, join in an Easter egg hunt, egg and spoon and three-legged races and much more at Moher Hill Farm, Co Clare, from today until April 20. Admission €8 (moherfarm.com).
* Join the Easter fun club at Dundrum shopping centre with a Mad Hatter magic show, puppet show and face painting all on level one today and tomorrow (dundrum.ie).
* Eggcel at egg painting, egg rolling, egg and spoon races and hunting for eggs at a cracking day of fun in Bundoran, Co Donegal tomorrow (discoverbundoran.com).
* Meet the Easter bunny and pose for a picture (right) on board the Waterford and Suir Valley Railway, tomorrow until April 21 (wsvrailway.ie).
* Kids aged four to 10 can try their hand at making an Easter basket at an egg-citing workshop at the National Gallery of Ireland, tomorrow 3pm (nationalgallery.ie).
* Get hopping at a spring hoe-down in the Pennsylvania Barn, feed lambs and chicks and step back in time at the Easter Celebration at the Ulster American Folk Park, Omagh, Co Tyrone, from tomorrow until April 21. See discovernorthernireland.com for details.
* Pit your millinery skills against the rest in the Easter Bonnets Competition at Roscommon town's annual Easter Parade, April 20, 1pm.
* Strap on your silliest hat and head for the Mad Hatters Tea Party at Deer Park in Dublin's Mount Merrion, where there'll be teacup rides, giant chess, croquet, a 'hatwalk' fashion show and helpers on hand to make bonny bonnets on April 20 (dlrevents.ie).
* Follow the trail and test your knowledge to find the elusive golden egg at the Big Barracks Egg Hunt, Collins Barracks, Dublin, April 20 at 3pm.
* Cheer on the chickens (and other feathered fowl) at the Carlingford National Poultry Races, The Village Green, Carlingford, Co Louth, April 21 (carlingford.ie).
* Saddle up for free kids' pony rides at the National Stud, Co Kildare, until April 27 (irishnationalstud.ie).
Whatever you're a fan of, this mix of music events will be music to your ears ...
* The Allegri Miserere has been sung in the Sistine Chapel every Holy Week since its composition in the 1600s. Hear a rendition of the haunting choral work sung by the Lassus Scholars at St Kevin's Church, Harrington Street, Dublin 8, this evening at 5pm and 7pm (dublinchoral foundation.ie).
* Sway to the sounds of original rude boy Neville Staple (Specials) and The Toasters at the Tramore Ska and Reggae Festival, today until April 20 (tramoreskafest.com).
* Join DJs and performers at the Electronic Music and Arts festival, Carrick-on-Shannon, Co Leitrim, tomorrow and April 20 (phaseonefestival.com).
* Be transported back in time by the sound of bone flutes and cow horns at the Melodies and Myths of the Vikings and Gaels performance at the National Museum, Kildare Street, Dublin tomorrow at 3pm (free event, booking essential, see museum.ie).
* Enjoy a magical mix of open air music, dance, traditional singing and competitive events at the 43rd Pan Celtic Festival, Derry, April 22 to 27 (panceltic.ie).
* Have a go at entering the Guinness Book for Records for the largest ceili band at the Kilfenora Music Festival, Co Clare, April 25 to 28 (kilfenoraclare.com).
From the 100th anniversary of the Howth gun running to 1,000 years since Brian Boru's death – you might just learn something new this Easter ...
* Celebrate Shakespeare's birthday with readings of sonnets and plays at just one of many events taking place as part of Cork World Book Festival, April 22 to 26 (corkcitylibraries.ie).
* Watch warrior re-enactments, longboats in action and see a Viking tented village at the Brian Boru Festival hosted in the High King's burial city of Armagh from April 22 to 27 (discover
* Don your white tees and blue jeans and head to Dublin's Irish Film Institute for its James Dean season starting on April 25 with a digitally restored screening of Rebel Without A Cause (right) and pre-film talk (ifi.ie).
* Watch historical re-enactment group, Lord Edward's Own, in action as they practice military drills from 1916 in Irish Citizen and Irish Volunteer uniforms in Clark Square, Collins Barracks, Dublin on April 26, 10am to noon (museum.ie).
* From Dublin City bike tours exploring the streets that inspired Ireland's literary works to walking tours and cruises there's plenty going on at Dublin's One City One Book events running throughout April, see dublinonecityonebook.ie for details.
* Learn more about the events leading up to the Easter Rising with a series of talks at Collins Barracks, Dublin, on April 26 (booking essential, see museum.ie).
Pull on your hiking boots and get ready to walk off some of those chocolate eggs at these events ...
* From easy rambles through forest trails to strenuous eight-hour climbs, the Dublin Mountains Partnership is hosting a guided walk for every ability today and on April 21 and 27 (dublinmountains.ie).
* A local archaeologist will lead walkers by the remains of crashed WW2 planes on the Sliabh Glas route, one of several guided walks lined up through the breath- taking landscape of the Dingle Peninsula, Co Kerry, as part of the Cloughane Brandon Hillwalking and Music Festival, today until April 21 (mountaineering.ie).
* Long, medium and bi-lingual rambles are all on the schedule at the North Leitrim Glens Hillwalking Festival, tomorow and 20 (loveleitrim.org).
* Follow in the footsteps of Brian Boru, right, on a guided walk through Tuamgraney woodlands, Co Clare, and see the magnificent Brian Boru Oak, thought to have been a sapling when the High King and his army camped in the forest a millennium ago. Booking essential see celtnet.org for details.
It's not just about legs of lamb and chocolate eggs this Easter ...
* Give praise for prawns at the Dublin Bay Prawn Festival with cookery demos, wine tasting, prawn shelling contests, a food village and street entertainments taking place in Howth, north Co Dublin, April 25 -27 (dublinbayprawnfestival.com).
* Now in its third year, the Galway Food Festival promises five days of flavour-full fun with a mouth-watering programme of events including wine tasting and cookery demos for grown-ups, Easter cup-cake decorating, kids pizza making and a teddy bears picnic for little ones as well as much, much more. Runs until April 21.
See galwayfood festival.com for details.
Spring has sprung with some blooming marvellous floral displays to check out in Ireland's gardens.
* Join head gardener Michael Byrne for a guided walk through the sweet magnolia fragrances and blossoms of the Japanese Garden and the abundant blooms of the Rhododendron Walk at Powerscourt, Co Wicklow, on April 23, 11pm (powerscourt.com)
* Take free guided tours throughout April or see small but perfectly formed Bonsai trees on display at the Teak house at the National Botanic Gardens, Glasnevin until April 23 (botanicgardens.ie)
* Reap tips and suggestions from horticultural experts hosting exhibitions, classes and talks at the Clare Garden Festival, Ennis showgrounds, Co Clare, April 27. (claregarden festival.com)
Whether you're slipping on your runners, watching the waves or wheeling down a forest trail, there's no excuse not to get outdoors this Easter.
* Savour the high octane sights and sounds of an international motorsports event as the Circuit of Ireland (above) gets going on its Lisburn stage today and tomorrow. Competitors from all over the world will be battling against the clock racing along closed public roads in the world's third oldest rally event with lots of family fun including fairs, food and music laid on for spectators. (circuitofireland.net)
* Marvel at the board skills of top surfers at the Causeway Coast Surf festival, West Bay, Portrush, April 19 and 20 (causewaycoastsurffestival).
* Work off choccie treats by joining in a host of running events. Clare Island hosts its third annual Cancer Care West 10k (with a 1k route for kids) on April 24 (clareisland.ie).
The 5km Easter Bunny run (in aid of Solas Centre) sets off from RSC Cork Road, Waterford on April 20 (solascentre.ie) or follow in the footsteps of legendary warriors and join the Cooley Legends half marathon, Carlingford, Co Louth, April 19.
* Join 300 cyclists from over 15 countries for a weekend of bikes, fancy dress, food and camping at The Single Speed European Championships in Castlewellan Forest Park, Co Down on April 25 - 27. (mountainbikeni.com).