The small, history-rich harbor town of Dingle, which can be traced back to the 4th century, stimulates the soul with its array of fresh seafood, lively bars and good ol’ Irish music. But you can’t pay a visit to this western Ireland hamlet without boarding a boat to tour Dingle Bay and spy Fungie the resident dolphin.
Since 1983, Fungie has frolicked his way into people’s hearts, delighting tourists and locals in an unscripted, impromptu display of fun. Without fail, Fungie appears almost if out of nowhere to greet boaters with his telltale porpoising, seemingly with a smile and posing for the camera.
While some boat cruises are strictly designed to locate Fungie and other dolphin pods, my wife and I chose the Dingle Harbor Cruise, which adds a well-rounded tour of Dingle Bay to the Fungie fun. For 10 euros apiece, we spent an hour on the bay capturing lush scenery and playful Fungie on film, while learning about Dingle’s history, courtesy of our guide.
The cruise allows for spectacular off-shore views of the town of Dingle and up-close views of colorful massive rock formations from cliffs that plunge deep into the waters of the crystal-blue sea water.
After your tour, be sure to take in the crowds on land at nearby Johnny Benny’s Pub and Paudie’s Bar, the latter of which features classic Irish music at night. When hunger calls, delight your taste buds at the Fish Box for fine seafood and Irish fare. For breakfast, wander over to The Pantri, a cozy café with a peaceful garden seating.
Guest Author: Kevin Fritz
I have an innate ambition to experience the world first-hand. In the past couple of years, I traveled to Saudi Arabia for research, and spent Christmastime with my wife, Christi, in Brussels and Paris, and Easter in Dublin. We have explored Bolivia, Germany, Italy, Ireland, Belgium, France, Poland, Costa Rica, the Virgin Islands, Canada and the U.S. A journalist for 40 years, I authored the novel Crossover, and received my BS in Journalism from Ohio University. Check out Kevin’s portfolio.