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“Cork and cobh is not a day tour - it's a bus ride”

Paddywagon Day Tours
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Cork Shore Excursion: Cork Tour Including Kinsale and Blarney Castle
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Ring of Kerry Full-Day Guided Tour from Cork
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Cliffs of Moher Day Trip from Cork Including Bunratty Castle
Ranked #4 of 29 Tours in Cork
Certificate of Excellence
Attraction details
Queensland, Australia
Level 3 Contributor
12 reviews
3 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
“Cork and cobh is not a day tour - it's a bus ride”
Reviewed August 21, 2014 via mobile

I did a fantastic day tour with Paddywagon from Killarney to the Ring of Kerry, and with this in mind I booked the Cork and Cobh day trip. What happened was uncomfortable and just embarrassing. I did as the brochure suggests, got the 9:30 bus to maximise time in each place. I was the only person on the bus, there was no commentary, no history, nothing - just an uncomfortable silence. I stayed 2 hours at Blarney which was great, but when I got on the tour bus I again was the only passenger with no commentary. I felt so uncomfortable I went back to Cork. This was not a day tour and should not be advertised as such. Day tours have people on them and a little history and fun from the guide. I've done day tours throughout England, Scotland, Northern Ireland and Southern Ireland. This an expensive hop on bus.

1 Thank kyliej99
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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English first
Level 2 Contributor
7 reviews
7 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
“Day tour with Paddywagen”
Reviewed August 19, 2014

We booked a private tour with Paddywagen from the cruise port (Ruby Princess) to Blarney Castle and the other sites around Cork. The driver we had was Mike, who came out of retirement for the day to help out. But it was like he never had left guiding. He immediately got us out in front of the cruise ship tour busses and when we got to Blarney Castle there was virtually nobody there, but 15 minutes later the line was 400 people long. He had good commentary not only on the history, but also was fun to talk with about everyday things. There were only 5 of us, and we had one of the 15 passenger mini busses so plenty of space. Also the PA system on the bus was great as you didn't have to strain to hear him. Our experience with this company was great. We would use them again.

Visited August 2014
Thank cagvc
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Fort Wayne, Indiana
Level 1 Contributor
3 reviews
3 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
“A great alternative for cruisers”
Reviewed August 18, 2014

We just returned from a 12 day British Isles cruise and booked 3 separate Paddywagon tours (Cork, Dublin, Belfast) as alternatives to the cruise line sponsored tours. In Cork our Paddywagon driver/tour guide was Gabriel. He was ready to go immediately when we got off the ship. He whisked us off to Blarney Castle way ahead of the ships tours so we beat the crowd and didn't not have to stand in any lines. He also took us on a tour of Cork and left us off for lunch and some free time in a lovely little town called Kinsdale. Along the way when he wasn't pointing out various points of interest or giving us a little history, he was singing Irish ballads. The tour was less than half of the price offered by the cruise line and included the admission price to Dublin Castle. Gabriel was ready and waiting immediately when we got off the ship, and he was very mindful of delivering us back to port in plenty of time to re-board the ship. The bright green Paddywagon bus was easy to find and was very roomy and clean. The bus also had free Wi-Fi which enabled us to catch up on email, Facebook, Twitter, etc. I highly recommend these tours if you want to have a fun time and save some money.

Visited August 2014
1 Thank Marilyn O
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Seattle, Washington
Level 2 Contributor
5 reviews
3 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
“Ridiculous Tour Guide”
Reviewed August 17, 2014

If you only have one chance to see a beautiful place, and you find that using a tour guide is your best option, then do not choose Paddywagon Tours of Cork. We went on the Ring of Kerry tour and unfortunately got stuck with Micheal as our driver/guide. I expected a little bit of cheesiness considering there is a grinning leprechaun on the side of their enormous coach bus, but a 12 year old would have been able to behave more professionally than our assigned driver, Micheal.

We were literally a captive audience for his all-day karaoke session. I'm not sure how "I'm sexy and I know it" is funny the first time around, but the second time was utterly ridiculous. He is NOT knowledgeable about the country side (anyone that knows even a little Irish history will figure that out very quickly). He is a walking advertisement for every hotel on the Ring of Kerry, and a couple of specific pubs or eateries at the stops. That's it.

He made it very clear at the very beginning that we were on a tight schedule and he would leave any passenger behind who did not show up at the bus at the appointed time. While I understand it is important as a passenger to be considerate of the schedule and other passengers, I sincerely hope the driver would give me the benefit of a doubt, perhaps I was stuck in a long queue or had become lost...be that as it may, I took him seriously and did not test him. My husband and I made sure to get back to the bus...so much for sightseeing AND breathing.

After the first scheduled stop Micheal did not bother to do a head count of his passenger list. He expected his captive audience to do that for him. He would holler on the PA system, "Is everyone here? It's time to go." And off we went. You know where this review is going by now don't you?

We had 15 minutes...count them 15! to see Torc Falls. It was a 5 minute walk from the parking lot uphill to the falls, according to the posted signs. Two different couples did not make it back at the appointed time. As far as I am aware, that was the ONLY time any passengers had been late, Micheal shouted back, "Are we all here? And started to leave until the back quarter of the bus passengers shouted, "No!"

He proceeded to harangue us about getting back on time or he WOULD indeed leave us behind because we had been WARNED he would. Seriously, we may have been waiting 3 minutes at this point. One of the couples returned and again he hollered, "Are we all here?" and even though we shouted no, he immediately left. Before we were 500 meters down the road, a passenger walked down the aisle to him and informed him that two people were still not aboard. He again chewed the rest of us out. He did go back for them but only because the bus got deathly quiet. We were stunned. When the couple got on the bus, they were embarrassed and profusely apologetic.

When Micheal started in AGAIN on the rest of the passengers, I finally lost my cool and engaged in a loud verbal argument with him. I had had enough of his boorish behavior. He never apologized for his behavior, indicated that I was the one with the problem (I agree -my problem was 6 feet tall and had red hair) and indicated that yelling over the PA was inappropriate behavior-although he had been doing it all day. It was quite ironic.

His attitude toward bicyclists and other motorists was alarming and hostile. An attitude he shared with us all day as if he were the Irish King of the Ring of Kerry and other mortals should bow out of his way.

He was not funny. He was not knowledgeable, or engaging. He was an absolute ridiculous excuse of a tour guide. This review does not even begin to address the problems with the timing of the stops (all of which were way too short ...1 hour and 45 minutes at Waterville only allowed us to eat and walk to the water's edge for a few minutes before hurrying back to the bus). There were several severely short 15 minute stops that allowed for no sight seeing whatsoever. Perhaps fewer stops with longer excursions would improve this trip, but only if Micheal were not the driver. Truly, this was an awful experience from start to finish.

Visited August 2014
8 Thank PNWtourist
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level 6 Contributor
107 reviews
16 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 59 helpful votes
“Took the Cliffs of Moher tour, didn't feel like throwing myself off, but not a great tour”
Reviewed August 17, 2014

Maybe it's because Michael, the driver, was more than a half hour late picking everyone up, maybe it's because we all stood in the rain for most of that time, maybe it's because I ended up in the seat behind the seat with the back of the bus exit, maybe I thought there were too many references to places that the tour would not be going, or maybe after a day tour in Dublin I should have known better, but I didn't think it was great.

The weather was great so that helped, and I was impressed with some of the tight squeezes that Mike took that huge bus through, and the place we stopped for lunch on Doolin was okay, but if you don't find the actual cliffs impressive, there isn't much else to justify spending a very full day on this tour. It felt like there were pit stops along the way to fill out the tour, but they were not really interesting. For example, there was a short (maybe 20 minute) stop at a shopping mall in Limerick and another short stop at a woollen shop and Bunratty castle - again about 20 minutes.

The banter of the driver was on occasion amusing and my teenage daughter loved a couple of songs that he sang.

So for me it was an okay day. The cliffs did not have the impact of Iguazu Falls or Ayers Rock, but it was okay.

If you go, and it's a full size bus with an exit just before the back of the bus on the drivers side, try to avoid the seat behind the "exit row". The extra room for the exit door seems to come from the leg room of this row. One person sitting there is just manageable, but two would be very uncomfortable. On the other hand, if you score the seat with the door, you'll have great leg room.

Visited August 2014
Thank schnoodleontheroad
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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