Wednesday, 13 December 2017

10 Places to Visit in Ireland With Kids


It’s incredibly easy to think of Ireland as a place for “seasoned” tourists to take bus tours or for young singles on self-directed “pub tours”. 

But the Ireland I know is welcoming for the entire family, filled with a centuries old magic just waiting to be discovered.

For nearly a decade I have been traveling with my children. My eldest daughter’s first flight was to Ireland. As we have crossed the country in the years since her first trip, we’ve discovered many amazing places – and have many more on our future places to visit in Ireland with kids list.

1. Cliffs of Moher



The Cliffs of Moher seem a very obvious choice for a place to visit in Ireland with kids. The most popular tourist destination in Ireland, people have been coming here for hundreds of years to take in the incredible views.

Before walking up to the cliffs – a bit of a hike – be sure to stop in the Visitor’s Centre. The Atlantic Edge exhibit is well worth the time.

Kids, and even adults, will enjoy learning about the history of the Cliffs of Moher and how bird eggs were collected from the cliff walls.

2. Killarney








Killarney is the tourist town in Southwest Ireland – and for good reason. Killarney is often the starting point for many tourists who plan day trips around the Ring of Kerry.

Nestled next to the city centre is the edge of Killarney National Park, which includes Ross Castle, Muckross Abbey and Traditional Farms, and miles of walking and cycling trails.

Killarney is a terrific base for day trips through the Gap of Dunloe and the Beara Peninsula. Add in shopping, dining and lively pubs and it’s very easy to spend your entire vacation in this single area.

3. Lough Gur / Ballyhoura

Lough Gur is quite possibly one of Ireland’s most magical – and least visited – areas. Lough Gur lies just south of Limerick City. In this small area you’ll find Ireland’s largest stone circle, the entrance to faerie land, castle ruins and incredible archaeological sites. Easily, an entire days’ worth of exploration and discovery for the kids.



The Ballyhoura Region, of which Lough Gur is a part of, covers much of County Limerick and the northern portion of County Cork. A popular area for hikers and mountain bikers, you’ll also find Ireland’s only Donkey Sanctuary, which is fun and free to visit.

Rambling Houses across the area will teach you Irish Dancing or maybe even how to play the Irish whistle or bodhrán.

4. Kylemore Abbey

While the adults will marvel at the Walled Victorian Gardens, the kids will see a fabulous place to run and explore. The gardeners are always happy to answer questions and the tea shop provides a relaxing spot for a cuppa and a bit of chocolate. If you are very adventurous, inquire about the mountain hikes behind the Abbey. Not for the faint of heart, but the views are unbelievable!

5. Dingle Peninsula 

Photos of breathtaking Kylemore Abbey in Connemara inspire many adults to visit Ireland. But few realize that the grounds of the Abbey are incredible place for children. The paths throughout the grounds feature fun play areas for kids.




Often overlooked in its neighbor’s (the Ring of Kerry) popularity, the Dingle Peninsula offers quite a lot for families. One of the largest draws is the town of Dingle’s resident dolphin, Fungi.  A terrific Oceanic Aquarium lies just by Dingle Bay.

Driving the peninsula leads to a stone age fort, bee hive huts and the Gallarus Oratory. Views are just as dramatic as you’ll find on the Ring of Kerry.

The Dingle Peninsula is a Gaeltecht, or Irish speaking area, so you’re likely to pick up a few Irish words, as well. It’s a fascinating and beautiful place in Ireland to visit with kids.

6. Giant’s Causeway

Will you believe the scientists, who say the Giant’s Causeway is the result of an underwater volcano, or will you trust the Irish legend that says it was built by Finn McCool as a path way to Scotland?

After visiting the miles of octagonal stones along the Antrim coastline, it’s likely you’ll choose the Irish legend. The kids sure will.

For those looking for adventure, follow the Antrim Coast Road, a narrow, often single carriage-way drive that hugs the Antrim coast providing some of the most breathtaking views in Northern Ireland.

Include a stop at the dramatic ruins of Dunluce Castle or, for those who enjoy a thrill, cross the Carrick-a-Rede rope bridge.

7. Lough Boora Parklands

The Lough Boora Parklands were once a prime peat mining area. Now those acres of land are public space, filled with art that can be appreciated by all ages.

Wander the pathways on foot, or rent a bicycle. And bring bits of bread to feed the ducks and geese that call the park home.

8. Clifden / Sky Road



Though maybe not as white-knuckling as the Antrim Coast Road, the Sky Road near Clifden offers incredible views – and a few heart-racing moments as well. At times the road seems like it must fall off the edge of the cliffs above the Atlantic Ocean, and then the road widens, providing a place to stop and enjoy the spectacular scenery.

The village of Clifden is called the Capital of Connemara. Filled with shops and pubs, it’s the perfect place to dance the night away in a pub to traditional Irish music (yes, kids are allowed in the pubs!). And the beaches of Mannin Bay are a terrific place to hunt shells and sea glass.

9. Bunratty Castle



One of Ireland’s best preserved tower houses, Bunratty Castle is the center of a folk park filled with traditional Irish cottages as well as a small village filled with traditional shops and a pub.

Wandering the grounds leads to a beautiful walled garden, a piggery, plenty of animals and even a play area featuring a wooden castle.

Bunratty castle can be explored top to bottom and hosts a Medieval Banquet nightly. For families with young children, I recommend Traditional Irish Night, which is filled with music, dancing and craic (pronounced “crack”; Irish for fun and entertainment).

10. Phoenix Park / Dublin Zoo

Many visits to Ireland begin and end in Dublin. But Dublin is not all about the pubs.

One place in Dublin that will surely please kids of any age is Phoenix Park. Over 1700 acres, Phoenix Park was originally a Royal deer park. You’ll still find deer and other wildlife throughout the park as you explore on foot or bicycle.

Also within the park is the Dublin Zoo, playgrounds, a flower garden, and tea shops. Phoenix park is truly a relaxing oasis in the center of bustling Dublin.

Disclaimer: We received free flights and accommodations from Tourism Ireland in exchange for our  honest feedback. Although writers are often provided with complimentary goods and services for the purpose of review, we at inCredible Canuck only recommend places we would stay ourselves and things we would use.

Monday, 11 December 2017

Finland with the Family

4 Things to do in Finland with Children
by Kirsty Hill


1. Visiting Santa Claus

Travelling with three children under 9, our first stop to Rovaneimi had to be to visit Santa Claus. We travelled in Ruska, which is Finland's autumn.

Although this may seem like an odd time to go visit Santa, I actually think it made the experience even better. Not only did we avoid the crowds but we got a much more personal adventure.


Each time we visited Santa at the Santa Claus Village (yes, we visited more than once), we were either the only family there or joined by only one or two other families.

Considering that over 300,000 people visit here annually, I'd say we hit the jackpot! Our children all got to have a long chat with Santa with no feeling of being rushed or moved on.


Tips:
  • Entry to see Santa is free, with the option of professional videos or photographs for a fee.
  • You can stay in Santa Claus Village. Cabins have a great festival feel all year long with Christmas tree and you'll have access to your own personal sauna.
  • Travelling in off-season means some stores and restaurants will be closed. Santa Park was also closed this time of year.

2. Chasing the Northern Lights

One of the top things to do in Finland is seeing the Northern Lights. At the information desk in Santa's Village, it is possible to book a variety of day trips and adventures. Being on limited timeframe, we booked all of our tours from here.

Our first adventure was chasing the Northern Lights!

Even in autumn, the temperatures drop below 0 degrees Celsius at night. Luckily, with our tour, we were provided with full thermal suits which kept everyone toasty warm.


The lights usually appear mid August until the beginning of April and can be seen on over 150 nights of the year. Unfortunately, it is still a game of chance and we did not see any lights our first evening. We did, however, get to cook sausages over an open flame and enjoy listening to our guides tell us local folklore and stories about the aurora borealis.

Luckily, we had an extra evening in the area and we lucky enough to catch a glimpse of these amazing lights the second evening.

3. Up Close with the Reindeer

There were a wide variety of reindeer options available. We chose to head out to one of the local  reindeer farms at Seiriporo Safaris.

In the winter, this family-owned business takes you out on a reindeer sleigh. As there was no snow, we got to meet the reindeer who normally pull the sleigh.

These gentle giants came out the surrounding woodland at the call of our guide and we got to feed them by hand. All the while, our guide explained his long family history in the area and even showed us the sauna he was born in!



4. Having fun with the Huskies

No matter what time of year you choose to visit Finland, Husky rides are available and one of the best things to do in Finland with kids. And if think that because there is no snow your ride won't be as exhilarating, think again.

Hooked up to the back of a quad bike, our teams raced at speeds that took our breath away. At Huskypoint, we got to play with adorable pups and learn about the extreme races the huskies take part in.

Depending on the time of year you visit Finland, you can enjoy anything from a 10-minute ride to a 5-day Husky safari. This was truly one of the highlights of our Lapland adventure and you could hear the children whoop for joy the whole ride.


Our adventure to Finland will be one that our children will talk about for many years to come. It has also stretched out those magical beliefs in our household just a little bit longer because now they've seen the real Santa at home!

Disclaimer: I received free entrance to the Santa Claus Village in exchange for my honest review. Although writers are often provided with complimentary goods and services for the purpose of review, we at inCredible Canuck only recommend places we would stay ourselves and things we would use.

Sunday, 29 October 2017

What to do on a cruise when it rains

By Melissa Mayntz
Cruise ships are built to withstand typical weather with ease, including the occasional storm or other bad weather. Likewise, cruise itineraries are planned to take advantage of the best weather seasons with minimal disruptions. 

Still, bad weather can impact a cruise in several ways. A simple rainy day may close pools and hot tubs or cancel outdoor activities or shore tours, or rough seas may mean certain shows are not safe for entertainers to perform and will have to be rescheduled. In very poor weather, the ship may need to be rerouted, and arrivals and departures at ports of call may be delayed, changed or even canceled in extreme cases.
It can be disappointing when bad weather changes the activities or destinations you’d hoped to enjoy on your cruise, but there is still plenty to do. 
Most indoor activities will be unaffected by inclement weather, including trivia contests, karaoke, cooking demonstrations, Bingo games, art auctions, craft projects, comedy shows, slot tournaments, scavenger hunts and more. 
You can also take advantage of the ship’s indoor facilities, such as the gym, spa, arcade and shopping mall, all of which may have different presentations, lectures and sales going on no matter what the weather. Larger, more elaborate ships often have even more unusual options, such as ice rinks, bowling alleys, movie theaters or planetariums.
If none of the scheduled options appeal to you on a rainy day, you can enjoy a slower pace by indulging in your own entertainment onboard. Most cruise ships offer several in-cabin movie options and you can order room service for a cozy snack. 
You could visit the ship’s library and see what reading material is available, and many libraries offer board games and puzzles for passengers to use. If you’re a bit hungry, you might enjoy taking the time to try out the taco bar, sushi station, gourmet pizza, ice cream sundaes, deli sandwiches or other great food choices available. Wash it down with a festive drink of the day or sample a new type of cocktail, wine or beer you’ve been interested in trying.
All the while, listen for ongoing announcements about the ship’s schedule and any itinerary changes or adjustments. Cruise ships have access to state-of-the-art weather tracking equipment and detailed weather reports, and as the weather changes the ship’s officers have the discretion to adjust their route and plans to compensate as needed. At the same time, the cruise director or other members of the entertainment staff will make announcements about new activities and other fun onboard so you don’t have to miss out on a thing.

Tuesday, 24 October 2017

FREE Whiskas perfect portions - 2 sources!


Hurry and request a FREE Whiskas perfect portion from Save.ca and also WalMart.ca.

Note: When I viewed the link in Chrome, the coupons initially didn't load. But they appeared after I clicked Select All. Once visible, I simply de-selected and then scrolled to the bottom to choose the Whiskas one :)

Looking for more freebies? Go to: 
http://reviewswhatsnew.blogspot.ca/search/label/Freebies%2FGiveaways 
to view a full list of all FREE samples and reviews on one page.

Monday, 23 October 2017

FREE All-Bran Multi-grain Crunch cereal

Hurry and request a FREE box of the new All-Bran Multi-grain Crunch cereal. Limited quantities available. Get yours here before they're all gone: 




Looking for more freebies? Go to: 
http://reviewswhatsnew.blogspot.ca/search/label/Freebies%2FGiveaways 
to view a full list of all FREE samples and reviews on one page


Monday, 9 October 2017

Premier Protein Chocolate Review

Premier Protein Chocolate is my new favorite go to snack in the late afternoon when hunger kicks in. Since protein takes awhile to digest, it naturally makes you feel fuller, longer. 

According to the packaging, this shake contains 30 grams of protein, including all of the essential amino acids, 24 vitamins and minerals. Best of all, it's just 160 calories with one gram of sugar. Whether you missed breakfast, have the 3 o'clock hunger pang or need to refuel after a workout, this shake with give you the protein you need, when you need it. 


I love that the flavor isn't chalky nor does it leave a terrible after taste. It's super low in sugar which is a great alternative to other protein shakes where the sugar count is in the double digits. Definitely one that I will purchase again and I highly recommend others #tryPremierProtein.


I received this product for free from Premier Protein in exchange for my honest review.

Premier Protein Vanilla Review


Premier Protein Vanilla is an excellent go-to snack in the late afternoon when hunger kicks in. Since protein takes awhile to digest, it naturally makes you feel fuller, longer. While I like the chocolate variety best, this vanilla version is a close second! It's not overly sweet like other protein shakes, I've tried. Also, if you sprinkle a touch of nutmeg to your shake, it tastes like delicious eggnog! 

According to the packaging, Premier Protein Vanilla contains 30 grams of protein, including all of the essential amino acids, 24 vitamins and minerals. Best of all, it's just 160 calories with one gram of sugar. Great for an easy lunch when you're busy at work.





I received this product for free from Premier Protein in exchange for my honest review.

Tuesday, 26 September 2017

Welch's Fruit Snacks Review

Yum! These Berries and Cherries fruit snacks were delicious. They’re bursting with vitamin C so perfect for fighting off back to school cold season. 

We love that they’re organic and gluten free, too!

We received this product for free from Welch's in exchange for our honest review.

Monday, 11 September 2017

eos Organic Smooth Spheres Lip Balm Review

I already loved eos lip balms but now I love them even more. These new eos Organic Smooth Spheres are made from an improved organic formula that's a softer formula with more, authentic flavours. I love the Strawberry Sorbet! 

Packed with antioxidant-rich vitamin E, soothing organic shea butter, organic jojoba oil, and sunflower oil, this softly scented strawberry balm helps retain moisture and gives a smoother glide. It's 100% natural, certified organic, dermatologist tested and hypoallergenic.


The packaging of this lip balm is super cute. It's round and pink and fun to hold. It also has a small depression on the side of the sphere that makes it super easy to open. The balm itself is also shaped in a sphere. It has a creamy appearance but the product it goes on translucent or clear when applied.

This lip balm is super affordable. Price varies by retailer, however, eos Lip Balms are usually under $5 CAD. You also get 0.25 oz of product, which is a very good amount for that price.

Overall, I am very satisfied with this lip balm. It's a good value. I would buy again and look forward to trying the other flavours in this line.

I received this product for free from eos in exchange for my honest review.

Wednesday, 5 July 2017

FREE cash back when you shop online!


If you shop online, sign up for Ebates.ca. It's a great website that gets you cash back every time you shop online and it's free to join! Ebates.ca works with over 750 stores that ship to Canada including Indigo.ca, Amazon.ca, eBay, Sears, Old Navy, Forever21 and Groupon. Click here to sign up today.

How does Ebates work?

Signing up for Ebates.ca is free; all you need is an email address. Once you’ve signed up and logged in, you'll be on your way to earning cash back at your favourite online stores! 

Simply begin any online shopping you do by first visiting Ebates.ca to browse all the stores and top brands available — with over 750 stores to choose from you’re sure to find something that suits your needs. 

Once you settle on the store you’d like to shop at, click the red ‘Shop Now’ button to be taken to that store’s site. Shop as you normally would on the store’s site and Ebates will track your purchase and deposit the cash back you’ve earned into your Ebates account.

How quickly is Cash Back credited to my account?

Most cash back rewards are credited within 48 hours. Some stores, however, cannot confirm your purchase until the return period has elapsed and may take up to thirty days to confirm your cash back.

When do I get my Cash Back payment?

Every 3 months, Ebates send you a cash back payment for purchases posted during the previous quarter based on the schedule below. But if you've earned less than $5.01 Cash Back, they'll carry over your money to the next cheque. Bonus rewards do not count toward the $5.01 minimum.

How can I get paid my Cash Back?

Currently Ebates offers 3 ways to receive payment:
  1. Big Fat Cheque: Ebates will send a cheque directly to you and they'll cover the mailing fees, too! You can change your personal settings on the Setting page. Be sure your settings are updated before they send out a payment.
  2. PayPal: Ebates will deposit your payment in your PayPal account and they'll cover the sender's fees. Just enter your full name and mailing address into your Address, Email & Password page for verification purposes. Your PayPal account must also be verified.
  3. Charity/Organization/Family Member: If you think Cash Back is all gravy, why not send it to your favourite charity, organization or family member? It's free and Ebates will cover the mailing fees, too!