Bealtaine – Celebrate the start of summer in Ireland and take a few days away in May


Celebrate all sci-fi and Star Wars in Kerry


As we welcome the start of the summer season (according to the Celts!) we can put the dreary winter behind us, hopefully! The move from April’s “uncertain weather” to May’s sunshine and blossoming nature is like a breath of fresh air.  We bid farewell to the dark evenings, wind and rain and eagerly await the warmth and leisure of summer.   It’s the perfect time of the year to plan a few days away or take an early summer holiday.

For those seeking an outdoorsy experience, hitting the road with a caravan or motorhome, or setting up camp in one of the many top caravan and camping spots across Ireland, is a must.   Camping Ireland offers over 100 sites throughout the country, catering to various preferences. Whether you’re looking for a site with family-friendly activities or a tranquil spot to enjoy the surrounding nature, Camping Ireland has options to suit every taste. It’s a fantastic opportunity to immerse oneself in the beauty of the Irish landscape and create unforgettable memories with loved ones.

Having a Bank Holiday weekend at the start of May provides the perfect opportunity to kick off our adventures for the month. With the beginning of festival season and a plethora of events happening all over the country, there’s something for everyone to enjoy. From walking festivals to art exhibitions, music concerts, and even niche gatherings like the Star Wars festival, May is bustling with activity.

We give you our top recommendations for events and festivals taking place throughout May.  There is something to suit everyone.


Cork International Choral Festival 

Cork International Choral Festival runs over 5 days from 1st to 5th May and is one of Europe’s premier international choral festivals.  The festival takes place at various venues through the city.  The Festival will attract approximately 5,000 participants and 50,000 people who bring Cork to life with song over the 5 days offering a diverse programme, high competitive standards, excellent organisation, and the friendliness of its welcome.

Later in the month the Fastnet Film Festival takes place in West Cork from 22nd to 26th May.  This a major showcase for Irish and International short film production, focusing on the craft of film. Many feature length films and hundreds of short films will be shown in up to 15 venues round the village of Schull.  Fringe events include: Live music, Drama, Book readings, Movie Quiz, Café viewing all over town, high quality, free family entertainment for all, outdoor screenings and an Irish language day on Cape Clear.


So whether you want to stay near the city or in beautiful West Cork check out the large selection of top quality caravan & camping parks in Cork.


Sci-Fi Film Festival Kerry


The Kingdom of Kerry comes alive over the May Bank Holiday with the annual Sci-Fi Film Festival which celebrates the Skellig Coast’s link to Star Wars and the wider Sci-Fi universe and hosts Ireland’s only dedicated Sci-Fi Film Awards.  This festival is a celebration of all things Star Wars and Sci-Fi related. The festival is a combination of live action events, comic-con style showcase of Star Wars and Sci-Fi related items of interest and also local arts and crafts combined with an interactive global online aspect of the festival. While in South West Kerry take a trip to the Skellig Experience Centre on Valentia Island which is dedicated to the UNESCO World Heritage Site Skellig Michael


You can choose to book in for a few nights on the Ring of Kerry, in the busy towns of Killarney or Tralee or somewhere along the Dingle Peninsula.  The choice is endless in Kerry


Riverfest Limerick


Limerick’s premier summer Festival Riverfest takes place over the Bank Holiday weekend.  The highlight of the festival includes Riverfest on the River Shannon, BBQ on the Boardwalk, the Riverfestival Village, the Great Limerick run and a spectacular fireworks display.  Kick off the weekend with a bang, as a giant winged Pegasus will leap straight out of Greek Mythology to strut its stuff along the banks of the River Shannon and through the city streets in a carnival-style parade.  Take a trip on the Zipline or the Panoramic Wheel and view the city from the sky.  This is a fabulous family event with activities all weekend for all the family to enjoy.

You can book into a site in Limerick or one of the many sites in Clare and take a trip into the city to view the spectacular Riverfest.


Kilkenny has 2 big events taking place in May.  Book a few days away in one of the top sites in Kilkenny and enjoy the buzz in the city.  The Kilkenny Roots Festival takes place over the Bank Holiday weekend.  The Festival features a wide range of Irish and international Roots/Americana acts in venues throughout Kilkenny city.  Audiences wind their way through the medieval streets sampling the huge range of music in the 30 plus venues, hosting over 40 Irish and international acts, with over 80 ticketed and free shows from early afternoon until late into the night. And, if beer is your thing the annual Kilkenny Beer Festival takes place on 17th & 18th May.  This is a celebration of Irish Craft Beer, with 10 Irish breweries attending. You will be spoilt for choice in who to try first.  Set in Sullivan’s Taproom expansive and well groomed beer garden with ample seating, perfect for large groups and couples you will be able to browse breweries offerings at your leisure and speak to the people who make them whilst being entertained by resident DJ’s and Musicians.





Enniscorthy Rockin Food & Fruit Festival


Just down the road in Wexford you can enjoy the Enniscorthy Rockin Food & Fruit Festival.  Over the May Bank Holiday Weekend, the medieval streets of Enniscorthy will come alive with the annual Rockin Food Festival. Savour the tastes and smells, enjoy a range of chef demos, groove to the music & enjoy a host of family-friendly activities!  They’ve got something special for their younger festival-goers too, with plenty of FREE and value-packed activities designed just for them. The Funfair on The Promenade will be a hit for all the family with The Big Wheel, The Sizzler, and lots of new additions.

There is a great selection of top quality caravan & camping sites around Wexford and Wicklow to chose from.  Book in for the weekend and check out the great fun in Enniscorthy as well as the main other attractions in the area.


Walking on Slieve Bloom


The gentle rolling hills of Slieve Bloom will be alive over the May Bank Holiday weekend with the Slieve Bloom Walking Festival.  Nestled between the Laois and Offaly this is a magnificent picturesque area of Ireland.  Over the 3 days there will be a wide choice of walks – woodlands walks, riverside and gentle rolling hills with experience walk leaders who will enhance your hike with stories of local history, geology and fauna.  The Slieve Blooms are accessible from all corners of Ireland.  It is recommended that you go online to pre-book the walks.


Boyne Valley Viking Experience


Later in the month the Boyne Valley Viking Experience takes place from 18th to 19th May.  This is the largest historic spectacle in Ireland with over 500 reenactors from all over Europe who display ancient crafts, games, battles and more. The highlight are 3 full size Viking longboats on the River Boyne.  Warriors will compete on the battle field and an array of traditional medieval craftsmen and women will display their skills and wares in a medieval tent village set up in the grounds of Slane Castle right beside the Boyne.  Storytelling and a Viking treasure hunt will guarantee the entertainment for the smaller visitors.

Book a few nights away in one of the nearby sites along Ireland’s Hidden Heartlands or Ireland’s Ancient East and take a trip to the Slieve Bloom Walking Festival over the Bank Holiday weekend or the Boyne Valley Viking Experience later in the month.


If you are planning on spending a few days in the northern area of Ireland there is a host of great events taking place during May.   Pitch up in Donegal, Sligo, Leitrim or one of the top sites in Northern Ireland and take a trip to the many events taking place in the area throughout May.



First up in Donegal over the Bank Holiday weekend you will find the Cup of Tae Festival.  You’d think this oddly named festival was a celebration of Ireland’s favourite beverage the reviving cup of tea.  In fact it takes its name from a local musician – John “the tae” Gallagher and is a traditional music event. Held annually in Ardara, it’s small scale makes it a very friendly event to attend. There will be trad sessions in the local pubs and a music summer school.  The festival will celebrate the Donegal style of fiddle playing as well as workshops for flute, whistle, accordian, piano and voice.


Bluegrass Music Festival Omagh


The best Bluegrass Music Festival returns to the Ulster American Folk Park in Omagh on 4th & 5th May.. This is a music festival for everyone to enjoy.  The 155th Balmoral Show takes place in Lisburn from 15th to 18th May.  This year there will be a Kidz Farm, a new Children’s area where you can meet pint-sized pygy goats, giant rabbits and an interactive goat-milking activity.  There will also be a reptile zone.  Also, on Saturday there will be a prize for the Most Appropriately Dressed!



So wherever you plan on visiting you will be assured of loads of great events and celebrations taking place.  Check out Camping Ireland for loads of great ideas on sites to pitch up over the weekend.

Camping Ireland has so much information to help you plan your caravan & camping trip away.  The new website is very user-friendly and has a number of great features which makes it very easy to navigate.  One of the new features is that you can now add filters to your selection.  This will allow you to get information on parks that are specific to your needs.

You can now filter for sites as follows:

Camping type – camping, glamping, mobile home hire, etc.

Holiday type – beach holiday, countryside, family-friendly, dog friendly, etc.

Facilities – beach nearby, playground, games room, shop, etc.


Region – Wild Atlantic Way, Ireland’s Ancient East, Ireland’s Hidden Heartlands, Dublin or Northern Ireland

Also, many sites are now offering online booking which will help you secure your pitch at the click of a button.

Whatever you want Camping Ireland has something to suit everyone.  Enjoy the independence and flexibility that camping in Ireland can offer in quality approved sites.  We look forward to welcoming you to Ireland’s outdoor living.