Don’t think of mid-term breaks as mere respite from the school run. With everyone freed up from the daily grind, use the week that’s in it to create some lasting family memories. We’re now officially into the first tentative weeks of spring, so there’s no better time to explore some of Ireland’s iconic spots as a family. Robust exercise, fresh air, the great outdoors and a spectacular view by way of a reward – what’s not to like about mountain climbing? Mayo’s Croagh Patrick, or the Reek as it’s known to locals, is on many a person’s bucket list, so why not finally tackle it? Westport is packed with family-friendly amenities and is a surfing hotspot to boot. At the Pirate Adventure Park at Westport House (westporthouse.ie, 098 277-66), enjoy pedal boating, a pirates’ swinging ship, plunge log flume rides, bouncy castles and pedalo boats on the lake. In nearby Louisburgh, families can explore Ireland’s rich and complex history at the Famine Museum and Grainne Uaile Centre (clewbaytrail.com, 098 66341). There’s a picturesque Famine walk along the Doo Lough Valley, while the Grainne Uaile Centre focuses on the ...