Travel on the Paakantyi show, thanks to discover Northern Ireland, embrace a giant spirit to inspire your next holiday at Discover Northern Ireland Dotcom.
Now, the summer of the staycation is coming to an end, so what's new in the world of travel? What's on the cards for the autumn? Pollo Canela, travel editor with the Irish Independent, is on the line.
Paul, good morning. Good morning. How are you? I'm very well, but I was just thinking I had my own staycation. I got great weather. But those who had planned for a staycation in the last couple of weeks in August just got drowned. They did, and that's always the that's always the risk with holidaying in Ireland. Look, we've been talking about it for donkey's years and the whole line of if you could roof it and all of that, there's always an element of luck involved with the weather.
But I think we're used to this. We know it's Ireland. We have to sort of be prepared for it. There's just I don't even answer that question anymore other than that, you know, we had great weather in lockdown. We've had a couple of weeks of great weather over the summer and you can have a bit of crack in the rain as well. I was out a couple of weeks ago with my 10 year old in and has grown having a surf lesson with the seventh wave school there.
There are family run surf school there. And the sky was as grey as an Xbox and it was raining most of the lesson. And we just had great cricket. The sea wasn't so cold. The waves were just a perfect height. And they had all of their distancing and sanitizing of gear down pass. And it was a real old school day out.
And afterwards we went and got a hot chocolate and a copper. So I think it's about making the best of it as well.
Yeah, and it's grown has quite a few attractions available.
Yeah. And I mentioned and it's grown. I passed away recently, but also I just see that this week they've they've done they're doing a new discovery and it's grown campaign with videos and social media ads and all the rest. And you see a lot of destination's doing this now as we head into autumn, because there is a worry out there that once the schools go back, that the shelters will really come down on holidays and suffocations and that things were quiet up considerably.
So you will see places start to advertise and start to push for autumn getaways and it's grown. I love that sense of a real sort of revisiting your traditional childhood holidays. And in fact, the the one other group that were on that lesson with us were touring Ireland in a campervan and they were going back to places that they had visited as kids.
Kilcullen Si, Si. Barth's, any of your listeners who no one has gone will know that building is right there. And there's nice little touches like I don't know if you've heard of gelati, ice cream. It's a famous little ice cream shop. And then it's grown and they've they've they're famous for the creative flavors like ketchup, flavoured ice cream and and tea flavored ice cream. And they've won an award for their best Oreo flavored ice cream around.
So it's it just was a lovely sort of old school day out.
Know normally Dublin is thronged with tourists from all over the place, weekenders, vacationers and all the rest of it, Americans in their droves. Not anymore. Dublin is struggling.
Yeah, I don't know if you've been in and out much. I've spent several days in Dublin over the last couple of weeks. And yes, Dublin's down. It's overseas visitors. It's pubs, it's nightlife. It's it's it's concerts, big sports events and all of that. And I think any city in the world would and is struggling in the absence of that. And we know there's also in terms of tourist attractions, people have tended to favor outdoors the attractions.
And also when people go on their holidays in Ireland, they tend to move away from Dublin and move towards the west. So that's all left the city struggling. But I think it's important that we don't let too much negativity cloud our conversations about Dublin because, you know, we need a strong, strong tourism, strong Ireland needs a strong Dublin.
That's where most people start their breaks and they come to Ireland. And there is a lot going on and there's that. I've managed to get a couple of restaurant bookings really easily. I wanted to eat and pickled the Indian restaurant, for instance, and also market, which is nearest our canteen, which is the new restaurant at the marlin. And I got bookings really easily at those. That's that's an upside to the lack of crowds and the museums and galleries are all back open.
We had a gorgeous day walking around the National Gallery and the Little Museum of Dublin and hardly any crowds. So you can put you can look at it positively, too. And there's a great spread of hotel deals at the moment. Unfortunately, that's because most hotel rooms are empty. But just for one example, the Fitzwilliam is a five star hotel in Dublin and that's doing A, B and B plus dinner, US and a McFarland's Clover's Alley restaurant, which is fairly high end restaurant for two people for two hundred ninety nine euro.
Those kind of prices, you would never see those in August in the normal run of things.
Now, there are some ideas out there that maybe we could emulate. You've been looking at international travel, the Geneva gift card. What's that?
What do you think about this? If you spend two nights in Geneva, you get a free gift card to the value of one hundred Swiss francs. Now that's that's roughly ninety three euro. You can take that and you can spend it in hotels, in bars and restaurants around the city. It's yours. Three, there's a couple of tenses you can't sort of you can't keep the balance and come back with that, you need to spend it all when you're there, you get one card per per room and all you have to do is stay two nights.
I know that we are looking forward to our stay and spend initiative kicking in in October. And one of the criticisms of it is that it's quite convoluted. People don't understand that you have to spend quite a lot to get the maximum value out of it. But just kind of like that clean notion of getting a card and then saying, off you go, spend in our city. Yeah, cruising, I thought that industry was dead and buried, but cruises have restarted from where?
Yeah, the the obituaries have been written for cruising before. It's a very resilient industry now. There's a lot it's it's very much Sushmita at the moment.
And I had a quick look around the major lines like Royal Caribbean and Celebrity and Carnival and that and none of them are proposing recommencing sailing's until at least October, November. Boort MASC, which is a European owned cruise ship company, has started limited cruises again from Italy. And now it's only allowing passengers from the Schengen area. It's running at 70 percent capacity there. The list of corvids guidelines and protocols as long as your arm. But they have started and and interestingly, everybody is watching how these go, because we know that there were there were high profile outbreaks on cruise ships at the beginning of the pandemic.
And interestingly, here, on an illustration of how seriously they're taking the restrictions, one of their their ideas is that when you go on shore excursions, you cannot get out of the ship's social bubble. And in Naples, unfortunately, one family group went off to do their own thing for a while and they were not allowed back on board. So it just shows the whole brave new world that there's a way out for cruiser's, too.
All right, Paul, thank you very much for joining us. Paul Canela is travel editor with the Irish Independent.
Travel on the part Kenney Show. Thanks to discover Northern Ireland, embrace a giant spirit to inspire your next holiday at Discover Northern Ireland Dotcom.