For Families

Explore events and information to get the most from your visit to Collins Barracks

Looking for free family activities to do in Dublin? Join us at the National Museum of Ireland - Decorative Arts & History, Collins Barracks.


The Museum provides a number of fun family friendly spaces for you to enjoy. There's a whole world of history to explore and many of our spaces have been designed especially with families in mind. Why not take a walk around our exhibition galleries and discover some of the hidden stories behind some of the Museum objects on display.

Activity Area

The Activity Area regularly hosts drop in seasonal family crafts and exhibitions all inspired by the Museum's Decoartive Arts & History collections. Stop by and see what family friendly activity we have next!



Take A Seat 

This is an interactive space, within the New Furniture Galleries, where you can explore design through the chair. These chairs, which date from the late 19th century up to the present day, are here for you to touch and examine, sit  and reflect on. Accompanying information encourages you to think about furniture design in terms of form, function, materials, construction, value and the influence of technology on chair forms.


You can find out more about each of these classic chair designs from the information sheets provided:


What do you think makes the perfect chair? Join us in the Take a Seat activiy area and design your own chair and display it on the gallery wall shown appove. 

Take a look below and see some of the designs that other visitors have done. 


There are also information sheets available in the galleries that provide additional information on the exhibits in the New Furniture Galleies. These are available for download here:




Barracks Life Room


The Barracks Life Room is a space that encourages interaction and discovery. The Barracks Life Room includes a number of interactives inlcuding a section for dressing up in replica uniforms. See what it was like to wear uniforms in the past and imagine yourself as a soldier in 1943 or as a soldier working for the UN in the 1990's. 


Listen to what life was like in the Barracks during the 18th and 19th centuries:

List to find out what the soldiers living in the Barracks ate during the 17th, 18th and 19th centuries:

While visiting the Barracks Life room make sure to pick up a copy of Spot the Difference!


Family Trails

Find our family spaces and much more with our Family Trail, you can download a copy here or pick one up on arrival:


Self Guided Activity Booklets

There are a range of self guided activity booklets available to download or to pick up on arrival at our reception area and our friendly staff are on hand to answer any questions you may have.