Clontarf Reserve has been one of my favourite places to visit for many years and even more so since junior was born 11 years ago.
Located at Sandy Bay Road, Clontarf, the reserve has everything you could possibly need for a great day out. For parents with young children, there is a sheltered playground, which has equipment suitable for kids 1-10 years. The beach has no waves, so is ideal for beginner swimmers.
Whether your kids enjoy building sandcastles or collecting shells, they will be kept occupied for hours. If you have a fishing rod, bring it along, as there are always plenty of fish around.
For coffee, head over to Clonnyís kiosk, which also serves hot food, sandwiches, muffins, cakes and the all important ice cream.
In summer, you will also see the ice cream boat come to the shore, much to the delight of all the children.
Clontarf Reserve has a number of free electric BBQs so pack some sausages and enjoy an easy lunch or dinner with family and friends.
Large trees provide plenty of shade on a hot summerís day or you can take advantage of several undercover picnic tables scattered around the park.
Bring a badminton set, kite, balls or cricket bats, as there is plenty of open space to run around and play games or if you prefer water sports bring a kayak, stand up paddle board or snorkelling gear.
During the week Clontarf Reserve is almost deserted, although weekends can get pretty busy. Paid parking is available next to the reserve and there is also street parking nearby. Toilets, showers and bubblers are also available.
If you have pets, bring them along too. Clontarf has a designated dog beach within a short walking distance from the main family beach.
Clontarf Reserve is a great spot to spend the day, whether you are catching up with family or friends. It is also ideal for birthday parties and special celebrations.
Sunsets are magical, especially during summer, so why not stay until the evening. I guarantee you won't want to leave.