Saturday, September 07, 2019

A Cruise On Lough Ree With Viking Tours Ireland ♥

One of my favourite experiences from our trip to the Hodson Bay Hotel was our cruise on Lough Ree aboard a replica viking ship, which was manned by the very knowledgeable Viking Mike.

You can't go that close to the lough and not go for a cruise on it and a viking ship seemed like the perfect way to travel, given the history of the area.

The viking ship sets sail from the quay just a few short steps away from the Hodson Bay Hotel and sails the lough into Athlone. There's also a sailing to the historic site of Clonmacnois too.

The boys were so excited to go on the ship and we took a seat on the back deck which gave us great views of the surrounding lough and islands.

Viking Mike gives a commentary including viking history and history/facts about the local area as the boat sails from Hodson Bay to Athlone. There's another crew member, George, who was also very polite.

The trip takes approximately 45 minutes but honestly it felt far quicker than that as I was listening away to the interesting facts while the boys went up to the front of the boat with Jacek for a look. It was quite a relaxing experiencing actually, surprising as I thought the boys would be wild on board!

There's a shop on board, as well as complimentary tea and coffee and plenty of blankets if it gets a bit chilly on the water. There's also free WiFi. It was such a welcoming space and a lovely way to travel on the lough into Athlone town. It's perfect for families and there's plenty of room to sit or to walk from each side of the boat if you fancy seeing it from all angles.

The children were even invited to steer the boat's wheel and my boys took great delight in this, it was such a novelty for them.

Once docked in Athlone, the viking boat heads straight back to Hodson Bay. Unfortunately, we didn't get to do the return journey as we went to Athlone Castle, but if we're ever in the area again I'd love to experience the Viking Boat again.

A family ticking for the Viking cruise is €40 for two adults and four kids, which I think is great value.

The viking tour has daily sailings until November 2nd and I'd highly recommend a trip onboard if you're in the area. It was such a great experience, the kids loved it and I think it's so important to support a small business like this, especially when the experience is so lovely and friendly.

You can find out more about Viking Mike and his viking cruises on his website

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