The Minister of State for European Affairs said he cannot condemn scenes of large groups gathering over the weekend as it's "natural" for people to want to meet outdoors in the good weather.
Thomas Byrne is urging people to stick with the rules for another few weeks so the country can continue to reopen.
Cabinet will meet on Thursday to provide a roadmap for the way forward in the coming weeks and months.
Further COVID-19 restrictions were eased today, with people now allowed to visit zoos and other outdoor attractions
Some outdoor sport, and children's sports, can also resume.
Meanwhile, videos on social media at the weekend showed big groups of people gathered in Salthill in Galway.
Speaking to Newstalk Breakfast, Mr Byrne said he hasn't got it in him to "condemn anyone for breaking rules" as "we're all watching to make sure we don't break any rules ourselves".
"But clearly there is an issue when there's good weather, people will gather, that's natural, that's happening at the moment and I think there will be arguments for that to be happening in a more formal setting, it's going to be in informal settings no matter what happens," he said.
"But I just urge people to stay the course, to hold tight because if we can do that then numbers will continue to go down.
"If we have big social gatherings, inevitably coronavirus will go up and that will reduce the scope for Government to open so if we stick with it for another few weeks I think we will be able to see it."
Mr Byrne did not provide any further detail on when additional measures might be eased, such as the reopening of hospitality and retail.
"I think that's fair and I think the Government's determination has been that whatever we open now we don't go back, and whatever we open now, it's off the back of a million people now having their first dose of vaccine," he said.
"The Government is determined to make sure that when we reopen society and the economy that works as well and we're not going back.
On when hospitality might return, Mr Byrne said it's best to let Government decide when that could be.
"NPHET are going to meet this week, they've really difficult decisions to make, people criticise when decision-making is happening," he added.
"There has been a cautious approach, based on the evidence that Government has had available to them and that approach continues today.
"Today is a huge day, to get our kids back training...so let's see today and make that work safely."
He continued: "Next week then what we've heard from Ministers is that they're considering personal services, religious services are obviously being considered, it's very important for huge sectors of society.
"After that, you'll see click and collect returning, then non-essential retail and outdoor dining etc.
"But I don't think we should jump ahead of ourselves too much, this vaccination rollout is happening much much more quickly now so therefore we can expect society snd the economy much more quickly.
"But I think it's better we do it in steps, that we do it in stages, and we've seen huge resilience and patients up to now and I think another few weeks of step-by-step reopening is going to do us a lot of good and reduce the risk of harm."