Swim with Fungi
Fungi is Dingle’s pet bottlenose dolphin. He moved into the harbour the week after NBC broadcast the very last episode of MASH (coincidence? we think not!) and has been there ever since. This is one friendly dolphin! He is said to enjoy reading, the movies (obviously!) and crochet. But more than anything he enjoys swimming with any homo sapiens willing to jump in the sea with him. This correspondent hasn’t yet had the pleasure, but apparently it is a life changing experience. Enquire at Brosnan’s on Cooleen, a street on the east side of the harbour. Or you can check the famous fellow out from the relative dryness of a boat.
Ice Cream at Murphy's
Though only 7 years old, Murphy’s Ice Cream on Strand Street in Dingle is already legendary. This isn’t just ice cream, this is ice cream perfection. So skip the restaurant desert and instead head to Murphy’s. This determined ice cream detective recently investigated samples of their Pink Champagne Sorbet, Honey Cardamom and Chocolate Whiskey ice creams and left the parlour in an altogether different mood. Ice cream as it should be – mind altering! Murphy’s also serves the best coffee in town. Additionally, the staff are some of the most cheerful & friendly people around!.
Climb Mt. Brandon
Irish mountains are really only large hills (the highest is only just over 3,000ft), so most can be climbed in a matter of hours. And yet the reward is unimaginable. Unlike most lofty mountain ranges whereupon reaching the summit you are merely surrounded by many other lofty peaks, in Ireland reaching the summit of the local highest ‘mountain’ means you will probably have an uninterrupted view of a whole quarter of Ireland in front of you while the Atlantic yawns, stretches and glistens behind you. And Mount Brandon on the Dingle Peninsula is probably the greatest of Ireland’s local highest mountains simply because the surrounding scenery is Ireland’s greatest. Start just beyond the village of Claghane (over Conor Pass from Dingle) parking near Miss O’Connors’ House. Ask in Dingle or Cloghane for the best route. Best saved for a clear day.
In the heart of Cork City and with an eye-catching fountain at its center, this quirky roofed food market has been trading since 1788. Under the possession of the Cork City Council, it's one of the world's oldest municipal markets. Artisan breads, fruit, and freshly caught seafood are just some of the specialities on offer. In recent years, the market gained worldwide fame when Queen Elizabeth II of Great Britain dropped by on her first ever state visit to the Republic of Ireland in 2011. In addition to a wide range of produce, visitors can grab a coffee here or sample local fare at Farmgate Restaurant.
St. Patrick Street
Initially conceived in the early 18th century by wealthy merchants presumably anxious to part their fellow citizens from their cash, this has remained Cork's main shopping hub. An easy couple-of-minute's stroll from The English Market and known locally as "Pana" the broad, curving street boasts many fine shops including upmarket department store Brown Thomas. Shopping, of course, is one thing, but the citizens of Cork are a sociable bunch and, particularly during fine weather, visitors will see groups of friends and family simply chatting and spending time together. Various architectural styles reflect change over the past two hundred years or so. Dating from 1786, and rebuilt on several occasions since then, St. Patrick's Bridge abuts the thoroughfare.
St. Fin Barre's Cathedral
The eye-catching structure in French Early Gothic style was designed by William Burges and consecrated in 1870. It's situated on a site where Christian worship has been taking place since the 7th century. By its completion, in excess of £100,000 was spent on the building, an enormous amount of money at the time. Prior to the re-design a more modest Georgian style building and bell tower stood in its place. The interior is richly decorated with fine mosaics in the choir and sumptuous artwork in the chancel.
A little under a half hour's southerly drive from Cork, and at the gateway to scenic West Cork, is the quaint deep-sea fishing and yachting town of Kinsale. Once a medieval fishing port, historic Kinsale is one of the most scenic resorts on Ireland's southwest coast. Visitors will find no shortage of cafés and restaurants to suit every taste, and the surrounding scenery is quite simply breathtaking. In recent years, the town has also become a world-class golf destination. Other activities include heritage town walks, an annual gourmet festival, a wine museum and, in neighbouring Summercove, 17th-century Charles Fort.
Stop in for some delicious baked goods, soups and sandwiches. As one of Dublin's most famously recommended cafes, be sure not to miss it if you get a craving for something sweet during your freetime.
During your freetime in the evening head to Andrews Lane for some amazing local live music. Voted the most exciting venue in the city.
Phoenix Park and St. Stephen's Green
If you're looking for a relaxing outdoor activity, take a stroll through Phoenix Park or St. Stephen's Green, the two most popular and beautiful parks in the area.
Visiting the Irish Whiskey Museum and the Little Museum of Dublin are definitely fun and educational ways to spend your spare time in the city. If you're a lover of whiskey, take a look into the history and evolution of some of Ireland's most famous whiskeys. To learn a little bit more about this gorgeous city, stop into the Little Museum of Dublin to experience Dublin's fascinating history.
If you just want to take in the city scene of Dublin on your own schedule, stop by Dublinbikes and rent a bike for the day and simply go exploring.
For those looking for a little culture, take in a performance at the Abbey Theatre and enjoy a night of theatre in the country that brought you some of the most renowned playwrights such as Samuel Beckett and Oscar Wilde.
The best way to see the Europe is by private deluxe motor coach. Door-to-door service with all the spectacular scenery in between. Our modern fleet of Mercedes, Volvos (or comparable) coaches for continental Europe are air- conditioned for your comfort. Enjoy deep-cushioned reclining lounge chairs, wide panoramic picture windows and a built-in stereophonic sound system. Our drivers are picked for their experience, skill, dependability and personality. Travelers to other exotic destinations enjoy modern mini vans or motor coaches for the transfers between each location while safari guests are transported in 4 x 4 land cruisers.
Many programs also include the fun of travel by ship from Italy to Greece or along the Rhine River, sleek trains or cable cars, private sailing yachts in the Greek Isles, bicycles in Holland, and jeeps in Dubai, just for the fun of it.Special Destination Tours
The majority of transportation on other programs is also by private deluxe motor coach unless stated otherwise in the respective itinerary ( i.e.: mini vans in Costa Rica). Please see each tour page for exact details.Luxury motor coach for European tours
Enjoy your journey with a professional driver at the wheel. Enjoy the scenery and view mountains and valleys, cities and villages through panoramic windows. Our luxury, air-conditioned motor coaches provide you with stylish and comfortable seats.Eurostar train and high-speed intercity trains
Eurostar is the high-speed rail service directly linking the UK to France via the Channel Tunnel. It started operating in 1994, providing city center to city center services. Eurostar departs from London's St. Pancras Station. Fast journey times London-Paris in 2 hours 15 minutes. Journey from Paris to Nice on a TGV high-speed train in just over 5 hours. Enjoy air-conditioning and modern seats as you pass through the French countryside at up to 200 miles per hour. Other intercity trains in Europe travel at speeds of up to 125 mph featuring individual seating or in groups of four sharing a table.Travel by rail in Europe is efficient and fun.Overnight cruise Italy – Greece
Greek ferries are used to travel from southern Italy to Greece. Departures are from Bari and Brindisi, Italy. Normal accommodations are 4-share on all vessels. Sea travel is fun and ships have amenities to make certain that you have a great time starting the moment you step on board including swimming pools, discos, bars and casinos.Dubai land cruisers & coaches
Desert Safari includes off- road driving in the Dubai desert. The drivers are qualified to operate the 4x4 vehicles in the desert. These cars are air-conditioned and safety features include seat belts and roll bars. Six passengers can be carried per vehicle plus the driver. Off-road driving can be rather bumpy and is often compared to roller-coaster rides. Advise your tour director accordingly if you do not wish to participate in the dune bashing. Ground transportation for the city tour and city transfers are by luxury air-conditioned motor coach. Dinner cruise by Arabian ‘dhow.'Central America & other exotic destinations - mini vans
Traveling by bus is one of the best ways to get around in these locations. Depending on group size, you will travel by mini-van or motor coach. Both are comfortable and safe means of transportation with local expert drivers. All vehicles are air-conditioned.
What to do during your free time? For more details or current local events talk to your tour director or your local city guide. They are always the best source for free-time activities and offer great tips on restaurants or local hang-outs.