Friday 19 July 2019

Dad's the word - ideas to make it a day to remember

From a ‘dude date’ weekend away to whiskey tasting tours, photo books and a flight simulator session, there are many ways to spoil your dad
From a ‘dude date’ weekend away to whiskey tasting tours, photo books and a flight simulator session, there are many ways to spoil your dad

Tanya Sweeney

Whether you want to high-five Dad for his bedtime stories, celebrate his first Father's Day as a parent, or even doff a cap to a Dad no longer with us, we've got the ways and means to ensure it's one to remember.

  •  Lough Erne resort in Fermanagh has just launched their 'mancation' in time for Father's Day. The 'Dude Date' package is an all male-getaway for father/son duos, brothers or friend groups looking to enjoy good food, better company and activities such as golf or adventure pursuits. Based on four sharing, guests will enjoy an overnight stay in one of the resort's luxury lodges and can stock an indulgent breakfast in the Catalina before heading off to do an 18-hole round of golf on the resort's Faldo course or opt for a morning at the nearby Correlea Activity Centre. Dude Date package prices start from £142 (€160) per person (minimum of four guests for a two-bedroom lodge). For more, see lougherneresort.com.
  •  Socks are the ultimate Dad present, but The Irish Cancer Society are going one better this year and have teamed up with the Irish Socksciety to create 'walk all over cancer' socks. Given that all profits from the €9 socks will go towards researching and fighting men's cancers, it's a perfect way to pay tribute to any father who has faced cancer. The cutoff date for delivery in time for Father's Day was earlier this week, though it is still possible to order pairs from the Cancer Society's Dublin office - contact cancer.ie for the finer details.
  •  If your kids have been guilty of using dad as a taxi, an afternoon going buck wild at Mondello Park is a pretty decent payback. Ireland's only international motorsport venue is located in Caragh, Co Kildare, off the R409 regional road, approximately 30 miles from Dublin city centre. Whether your Dad wants to sample a Supercar, fulfill his F1 fantasy or enjoy a BMW Driving Experience, he can enjoy whatever turbocharged experience his heart desires. Vouchers are available to buy for all experiences - more information about what's on offer is on mondellopark.ie.
  •  Whiskey tasting tours are becoming increasingly popular, and among the best is the Dingle Distillery in Dingle, Kerry (dingledistillery.ie). If whiskey isn't his tipple, there's plenty of home-crafted gin and vodka to go around, too. Elsewhere, the Kilbeggan Distillery in Westmeath (kilbeggandistillery.com), and the Jameson Experience in Midleton, Cork (jamesonwhiskey.com) provide vouchers for tours.
  •  Airbnb Experiences are tours, demos and events organised by real locals, and there are some unusual, and pocket-friendly, activities that might just be up Dad's street. In Dublin alone, you can book a panoramic e-bike tour of Howth (€65 per person), a kayaking tour of the Liffey (€35 per person), and a street art walk (€30 per person). Further afield, there's a falconry afternoon, including food and equipment in Wicklow (€70 per person), trek with alapacas in Kenmare (€25 per person) or even herd sheep in Waterville €14 per person). Dozens of other unusual afternoons are listed - see airbnb.ie/s/Dublin--Ireland/experiences for all the info you need.
  •  Down in the Aero Visitor Centre in Shannon, book a 30-minute flight simulator session and let Dad see how it feels to pilot a large civilian airplane. He'll get to (sort of) fly a B737-800NG either by day or night and in all sorts of weather conditions. Tickets are €75 and can be booked via goldenmoments.ie.
  •  If your family guy is a bit of a gourmand, the Taste of Dublin, which runs until Sunday, is the best place for him this weekend. There are two 'sittings' on Sunday (12pm-4pm and 5.30-9.30pm). Admission is €24.50 and you'll need the event's own currency to buy up samples from some of Ireland's best-loved restaurants and bars. The Morrison Hotel on Ormond Quay is offering its Gentleman's Afternoon Tea - a selection of steak sandwiches, beef sliders rasher scones and whiskey chocolate truffles. The feast is €55 for two and can be booked via bookings.arosuite.com.
  •  Get the kids to create a personalised Father's Day card; it's the oldest trick in the book but it still warms the heart. Give him a framed family photo to stick on his desk at work (ever notice how we don't print photos anymore?). There's always the greatest - and cheapest - gift of all; a lie-in.

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