Take to the greens for some golf fun on our mini golf course. Campers work as a team to defeat the “hill” and try to get a hole in one!! Mini Golf is perfect for campers and families and provides lots of fun and entertainment at Barretstown. The mini golf course offers the trills of golf but in the relaxed environment of Barretstown.
A recent addition to Barretstown, our petting farm is home to our newest residents, Boomer and Chunk the pot belly pigs and our famous donkey that stared in the hit TV show Moone Boy. Keep a look out on the facebook page for some surprise additions to the petting farm in 2016!!
A grove of tall trees welcomes you into Sherwood Forest, our Archery base. Campers love practicing the ancient art of archery. Mastering the hand and eye co-ordination to send an arrow flying towards the targets is always a triumphant moment. The sounds of balloons bursting are followed by excited cheers.
A daunting challenge for campers old and young, the high ropes course structure measures 40 feet in height. It gives new meaning to the word ‘challenge’ and sometimes represents the perceived limitations soon overcome by brave climbers. Seven separate challenges loom above as you approach the Tower, including ‘The Giant’s Ladder’ and ‘The Leap of Faith’, where daring campers scramble to the top of the post and then summon up all their courage to leap into the air and catch a flying trapeze. A firm favourite with our campers. If the campers dare they can also jump from the amazing Parafan which starts as a free fall and gradually slows down to bring climbers to safety on the ground. The famous Ryan Tubridy took this brave challenge during his visit to Barretstown for the Late Late show!!
Always a popular spot with our younger campers the playground is home to our mini zip line, swings, seesaw’s and slides. Located beside the Children’s Village squeals of delight can often be heard from our young campers enjoying the playground.
The Children’s Village is home to our 15 cottages. You are welcomed into each cottage by an open fireplace and seating area, with the dorms and bedrooms located off the heart of the cottage. The cottages are home to our campers and families during their visit to Barretstown. Cottage friendships are formed and often last for years.
Our fairytale castle is the centrepiece of Barretstown, dating from the 12th century but still very much a part of camp, it is home to our fully accessible baking kitchen and often used by campers for activities such as finding the princess, tea parties and fashion shows. During Family camps the adults also enjoy high tea in Elizabeth Arden’s drawing room.
The tranquil lake is not only home to a wide variety of Irish wildlife, it’s also home to hundreds of trout, and fishing is a peaceful and popular waterfront activity. Our catch and release policy ensures everyone enjoys their fishing trip. Children and families also enjoy toasting marshmallows and sharing stories over open campfires on the beach beside the boathouse.
Take to the high seas (aka the lake) in one of our Canadian style canoes for some aquatic adventures. Barretstown is famous for having canoeing a “Dry” sport which means we don’t topple the canoe’s in the water and everyone stays dry while paddling on the lake.
Zip across the swamp on our zip wire, hidden among the trees near the lake. If you are lucky you might zip across and catch a glimpse of Bali the Barretstown alligator. Legend has it he sleeps in the bottom of the swamp.
Barretstown’s walled “Secret Garden” dates from Victorian times and offers a quiet, sheltered place for children to rest and recharge. An ornate wrought-iron gateway leads into the garden, so its colourful beds of flowers and green lawns can be admired from outside, too. This is a great location for playing music outside and some great storytelling in peaceful surroundings which include the fairy house. Watch out for the giant macaroons and be sure to check out our award winning Bloom garden, with its hidden hobbit house.
Jim’s Place is home to our large indoor sports hall and climbing wall, a great space for rainy days and a firm favourite for adventurous campers who want to take on the challenge of the climbing wall. In the evening time Jim’s place is transformed into an area where everyone at camp comes together to participate in a whole camp activity. Examples of this are exciting activities such as carnivals, silly Olympics, 60 games in 60 minutes and giant games.
Barretstown has an outdoor amphitheatre which is a great location to get the entire camp together for impromptu plays and a big open campfire when the weather allows us. Campers learn repeat after me songs such as Great big moose, little red waggon, Yeppo, Ei Ei Ei Ei O and have fun singing together while toasting marshmallows and eating smores.
Kindly donated by the Irish Fairy door company, our intriguing fairy trail is an adventure around camp discovering new friends hidden in the trees as you go. Meet the resident fairies of Barretstown and track down their hiding places with our special app or printed map. Watch out for the fairy dust!
With Paul Newman for a founder, drama was always bound to have a special place at Barretstown. Children love this beautiful building with its professional stage, sound and lighting systems, and dressing rooms full of wonderful costumes. The seating is retractable, creating a vast and versatile workspace for the drama programme.
The dark room in Barretstown has been home some great creative endeavours and beautiful photography produced by campers. It offers a chance to learn basic or more advanced skills in taking and developing photos in our dark room to producing, directing & editing a music video. Light painting is also part of the photo activity.
One of our most popular activity areas, the Arts & Craft room is home to endless creativity. Campers can try their hand at pottery, weaving, canvas painting, wood carving, robot making to name but a few. The famous Barretstown mural welcomes campers to enjoy some serious fun. The arts and crafts room is a haven for children and adults alike let their imagination and creativity flow.
Our volunteer accommodation is located along the main courtyard and is a home from home for our volunteers during camp. A great chance to meet all the volunteers and relax after a long day of serious fun.
As the name suggests, the Lego Room is home to an abundance of lego and creative fun. Test your building skills and imagination in this fun and colourful room. Campers can also create their own Lego stop motion movie which is always a hit especially with teenagers.
From drums to guitars and some very coordinated clapping, there are always interesting sounds coming from the Music room in the courtyard. Music offers a unique environment for campers to express themselves loudly, quietly, sitting or doing a parade across camp. Music offers opportunities to explore sound, rhythm, tone and even movement with our camp instruments.
Our crèche hosts our youngest campers during family camps, here children aged 0 to 4 get to participate in age appropriate activities such as sensory time, music and story time. During the summer, the crèche is transformed into our Nature Room where individual and group projects are offered from building a fort or making a volcano or learning about nature at its best.
Barretstown’s medical centre – The Med Shed is discrete and friendly. Looking nothing like a hospital, the Med Shed is housed in a beautifully restored stone cottage, overlooking the tranquil Secret Garden. With no hospital smell or white coats the Med Shed team are on hand to help with any medical needs campers may have in a relaxed environment. The top class medical facilities give peace of mind to parents, knowing that their children have access to medical backup if needed. The Med Shed can deal with everything from cut knees, to administering oral chemotherapy to full management of medicines needs during a stay at camp.
Browse the Barretstown library or find a quiet corner to enjoy the peace and quiet of this room with a good book and a smile. The library is often transformed into a sensory room where children can enjoy interactive stories such as going on a bear hunt.
The Dining Hall is the true heart of camp, where everyone comes together three times each day to enjoy delicious food and take part in the Barretstown ritual of Groove for your Food. The Dining Hall has a medieval theme with rough stone walls, a high vaulted ceiling, and a big fireplace at the top of the room. Children and families have designed and illustrated the large, colourful banners which decorate the walls.
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