Winner of Best Family Attraction 2012 and Autumn Winter Events Schedule

Westport House gets a gold STAR for Best Family Attraction! Exciting line up for Autumn/Winter events at Westport House

Westport, Co. Mayo, Ireland (Friday, 30 August, 2012) – Thousands of parents voted Westport House & Pirate Adventure Park in Co. Mayo as the Best Family Visitor Attraction in the West, for the second year in a row, in the recent Primary Times Star Awards 2012.

The attraction offers a great range of things to do to keep all the family entertained, from heritage exhibitions and tours of the 16th Century historic house for adults and kids, to outdoor amusements in the Pirate Adventure Park, to thrilling activities for all ages in the Adventure Activity Centre, and a calendar of special events throughout the year.

To celebrate their Primary Times Star Award, Westport House has announced an exciting line up of events for the Autumn/Winter season, which include the much anticipated annual Halloween Fest, Fireworks Extravaganza and Winter Wonderland.

Westport House Halloween Fest

Central to the annual Halloween Fest, which will run from October 27 to November 4, is the beautiful 16th Century ‘Haunted’ Westport House.  With a range of free activities and workshops, including the popular Storytime with the White Witch, colouring competitions, Halloween characters, Jack O’ Lantern Carving and fireworks, families are sure to have a ‘scream’ of a time. Not only that but kids will get shivers down their backs at the Pirate Adventure Park as they plunge on the Cannonball Run slide, dangle on the Pirates Swinging Ship and thrust into the Pirate Plunge log flume ride.  Even walking around the historic Westport House is an eerie experience.

The Haunted House will be open from 11am to 5pm daily, with rides and attractions open from 1pm to 5pm daily.  The regular pirate pass pricing applies, which means that visitors can avail of discounted hotel prices.

Westport House Fireworks Extravaganza

Join Westport House for an explosive evening of treats and tricks on October 28 at 7pm at the annual Fireworks Extravangza.  Not only will you see the skies light up but you can practice your Thriller dance moves at the Halloween dance in the front lawn of Westport House.  Make sure you look scarily good to be in with a chance to win some fantastic prizes in the costume competition.

Entry is €5 per person.  Gates open at 6:30pm.  October bank holiday Sunday.

Westport House Winter Wonderland

The magical Westport House Winter Wonderland, which will run every weekend from November 24 to Christmas Eve, is now hailed as one of the best Christmas experiences in the West.  The Winter Wonderland not only includes a special visit to Santa’s Grotto and gifts for kids but complimentary drinks for all, face painting and train rides in the Westport House Express where you can take in the magnificent grounds! You can also enjoy a Festive Storytime with Mrs. Claus, an Elves Workshop to see all of the hard work that goes on in preparation for Santa’s visits, and children can even make their own decoration to take home with them.

Babies under 1 year old go free for their first Christmas!  And Westport House has an all-in price of €10 for infants between 1 – 2 years(a gift is included), €20 for children from 2 yrs and up (visiting Santa) and €10 for adults. For this very popular event, pre-booking is required to secure preferred times and dates to avoid disappointment.

Westport House Adventure Activity Centre

Westport House is fast becoming a hub for adventure activities in the West with their new Adventure Activity Centre located on their grounds in the beautiful woodlands. A range of activities such as zorbing, zipwire, archery, orienteering, kayaking, laser combat games, stand up paddle boarding and laser clay pigeon shooting are available all year round and by appointment only during the Autumn/Winter.

Westport House and Gardens

The historic 16th Century Westport House and Gardens are open daily in September from 10m – 4pm, and from October to December at weekends only.

For further information on events, tours, fees or bookings, visit, see Facebook or call +353 98 27766.

Editors Notes:

The Primary Times STAR Awards are voted for by thousands of Irish parents with children under 12 years.

The country’s Best Family Visitor Attractions for families are:

  • West:  Westport House & Pirate Adventure Park, Lough Key Forest Park and Bunratty Folk Park
  • Dublin:  Dublin Zoo, Fort Lucan and National Museum
  • East: Tayto Park, Castlecomer Discovery Park and Lullymore Heritage Park
  • South:   Fota Wildlife Park, Aquadome in Tralee and Trabolgan Holiday Village

Hotel Westport, another family-friendly Westport business and neighbour of Westport House, was also honoured as one of the Top 10 Family Hotels in Ireland in The Primary Times Star Awards.

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