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Lisa B

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Lisa B

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Dec072013

Tour/Activity

Celtic Heritage Day Trip from Dublin: Boyne Valley, Hill of Tara and Loughcrew Celtic Tombs

Dublin, Ireland

My Rating
4 star rating: Recommended

My Review

We thoroughly enjoyed the tour. Wear your hiking shoes and dress warm if you go in the winter as it does get windy and it is muddy as it rains in Ireland. Although the day was cold and brisk, the bus was warm and comfortable and Jim, the guide, was excellent. He told us about the history of the places he was taking us, told us some "stories" that have been passed down and left it up to us to decide if we believed. It made the trip fun as it wasn't just about history. We saw and learned about fairy trees. We got to stand in a Celtic tomb on top of a hill and viewed art carved into the rocks thousands of years ago. We got to touch the wailing stone that the High Kings of Ireland touched when they were seeking their position as King. We went to Monasterboice and saw one of the largest Celtic High Crosses that is one of the oldest in Ireland. We went to Drogheda and saw Oliver Plunkett's preserved head in St. Peter's church. This was a great tour. We learned so much and can truly appreciate the history of Ireland. I would recommend this tour to everyone. We enjoyed our stop at Trim Castle too, even though we didnt have time to go inside of the keep.

My Photos

  • Trim Castle
  • Trim Castle

Dec062013

Tour/Activity

Skip the Line: Guinness Storehouse Entrance Ticket

Dublin, Ireland

My Rating
4 star rating: Recommended

My Review

It was worth buying the skip the line tickets even though the ticket line was short. I had been there before when the line was long and it was great just to bypass all of that and go right in. The tour was self guided but very interesting. Don't miss the tasting tour, which is included in your ticket price. Also, you have to go the the Gravity bar on the top floor for your free Guiness. The view, on a clear day, is incredible. My husband really enjoyed this tour. This was my second time there but I still enjoyed it as they added the tasting experience and made a couple of other changes. It is worth the visit.

My Photos

  • Enjoying our free Guinness in the Gravity Bar

Dec062013

Tour/Activity

Dublin Traditional Irish Music Pub Crawl

Dublin, Ireland

My Rating
5 star rating: Highly Recommended

My Review

This tour was awesome. The musicians were incredible. They took us to the Ha' Penny Pub and Madigan's. It was a slight walk to Madigan's as it was across the River. However, both pubs were great. We learned alot about the history of Irish music, the instruments, background behind the Irish songs, etc. At the end they encouraged audience participation and one of the guests got up, took the guitar from the one musician and played two Irish ditty's. This tour was a blast. It was reasonably priced too and well worth it for the entertainment value. A must do.

My Photos

  • Pub Crawl Musicians

Mar202013

Tour/Activity

Skip the Line: Vatican Museums Walking Tour including Sistine Chapel, Raphael's Rooms and St Peter's

Rome, Italy

My Rating
5 star rating: Highly Recommended

My Review

This tour is an absolute MUST. Getting in before the general crowds (we entered at 8:10, the general admission time starts at 9) is absolutely critical to give you a head start before the crowds. Our tour guide, Tiffany (from Indiana but lives in Italy), was outstanding. Her knowledge and her absolute love of the Vatican came through in everything she shared with us to provide us with an appreciation of all that came before us. She spent time before the Sistine Chapel at a kiosk for tour guides sharing the history and significance of the paintings since you can't speak in the Sistine Chapel. At first we thought this might be a waste of time. However, the time we spent listening to what Tiffany shared with us was absolutely priceless. The stories about Michaelangelo and Pope Julius II, the stories behind some of the images in the paintings, the history of the time, Tiffany brought it all to life for us which stuck in our minds so that when we walked through the Sistine Chapel @ 1.5 hours later we remembered it and were able to look at the paintings with a greater appreciation than we would have had if she had not spent the time. This tour is a MUST, particularly if Tiffany is the guide. It is worth getting up early.

Mar192013

Tour/Activity

Pompeii Day Trip from Rome

Rome, Italy

My Rating
5 star rating: Highly Recommended

My Review

This tour was the best we did while in Italy. We were lucky and had a beautiful, clear day for our tour. It was absolutely AMAZING to walk through the ancient cobblestone streets and peek into the lives of this ancient civilization. Walking past the bakeries, the take out restaurants, through the brothel and the bath house, walking up and sitting on the ampitheater seats like they did to watch a performance - all of this was absolutely overwhelming. Our Pompeii tour guide Gianni brought this all to life for us, particularly in how he told the stories of ancient life. In addition to the tour of Pompeii we hiked up Mt. Vesuvius. We were surprised by this because during March Vesuvius is usually closed to tours and you tour the Museum. We got lucky. It took us about 30 minutes to hike up the mountain. The hiking path was clear but it was REALLY cold and windy so dress accordingly. When we got to the top we were able to look into the crater, watch the steam rise and appreciate the beauty of the scenic surroundings. Breath taking to say the least. An absoutely AMAZING day all around. The tour director on the bus, who just didn't get the value of silence and the value of sharing information that is relevant (instead of bombarding us with irrelevant information that had nothing to do with the tour), could have been better but she didn't detract from the day's experience. This tour is a MUST. So glad we booked it!

Mar182013

Tour/Activity

Ancient Rome Half-Day Walking Tour

Rome, Italy

My Rating
5 star rating: Highly Recommended

My Review

It poured during our walking tour and we were the only couple on this tour. Not the best of situations for an outside walking tour but we made the best of it. Luckily we got a brief respite during our tour of the Colleseum and the Forum as they are best enjoyed when it is not raining. Our tour guide, Micheala, was amazing under the circumstances. She is a trained archaeologist and was so knowledgeable it brought everything to life for us. The Colleseum was overwhelming. The fact that it was raining while we were in the Pantheon, which has an open roof, was actually pretty interesting. I never saw it rain in the middle of a church on the marble floors. They have built in drainage in the floor. This added to our experience. Don't forget the throw a coin over your shoulder into the Trevi Fountain to make sure you sre destined to come back to Rome. Definitely worth taking the tour - I will cross my fingers for sunny weather for you but, just in case, don't forget your umbrella!

Mar122013

Tour/Activity

Skip the Line: Florence Uffizi Gallery Tickets

Florence, Italy

My Rating
4 star rating: Recommended

My Review

Definitely worth buying these tickets to avoid standing in the LONG line. What this does is gives you tickets to stand in the "reserved" line so you still need to wait to be admitted as they only allow a certain number of people at a time. The lobby only holds a certain number of people and everyone has to go through a security scanning process like in the airport. There were some really breath taking pieces of art, including The Birth of Venus. I regret not buying the guided tour tickets as this was a big museum and difficult to find your way without a guide. So glad we did this.

Mar122013

Tour/Activity

Skip the Line: Florence Accademia Gallery Tickets

Florence, Italy

My Rating
4 star rating: Recommended

My Review

Definitely worth buying these tickets to avoid standing in the LONG line. What this does is gives you tickets to stand in the "reserved" line so you still need to wait to be admitted as they only allow a certain number of people at a time. The lobby only holds a certain number of people and everyone has to go through a security scanning process like in the airport. These tickets were worth it to see Michaelangelo's David. It was breathtaking. I was moved beyond belief, which was a huge surprise. This museum is very small and the David is the cornerstone of the museum. It only took us a total of an hour to go completely through the museum. Not worth buying the guided tour tickets for this one. The skip the line tickets are sufficient. This museum is a MUST SEE for the David without question.

Sep282012

Attraction

Guinness Storehouse

Dublin

My Rating
5 star rating: Highly Recommended

My Review

Prepurchasing a ticket through this tour is worth spending the extra few dollars. You can save a few dollars on admission by just buying your ticket at the Storehouse. However, by pre purchasing this ticket I guaranteed I did not wait in line when I got there. I could go right in. That was very helpful as I was able to maximize my time touring other sites in Dublin with the knowledge that I did not need to leave alot of time for standing in line for the tour. The tour is self guided and very informative. I didn't have an appreciation for what is involved in brewing beer. Now I do. And Guinness at the storehouse tastes better than anywhere. Worth the money!

Apr192012

Tour/Activity

Private Viewing of Stonehenge including Bath and Lacock

London, United Kingdom

My Rating
5 star rating: Highly Recommended

My Review

Even though it was pouring down rain when we got to Stonehenge we were still able to walk among the stones. It was still incredible and still worth the money. The trip to the Roman Baths was also awesome. Lacock was a cute town as well. Our guide, Paul, made the trip thoroughly enjoyable. LOVED him. This trip is a must do if you have never been to Stonehenge. Well worth the money.

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