Cheap Seats: Bargain airfares to Slovenia and Ireland
Stars and Stripes June 13, 2007
Next month — July 20-22Ljubljana, Slovenia: 174.20 pounds round trip
Fly Easyjet from London Stansted to Ljubljana.
Enjoy the quaintness of this capital city divided in two by the Ljubljanica River, with the new city on the west and the old city and castle on the east. The town has many interesting bridges, including the Triple Bridge, which connects the newer main square with the older market, and the Dragon Bridge with its four guarding dragons.
Catch the tourist train from the Triple Bridge or take the funicular railway to Ljubljana’s most popular tourist site, the Ljubljana Castle. Visitors can explore the courtyard, the Saint George Chapel and the various exhibits within the castle for free. The Ljubljana tourist office recommends paying a small fee to climb the winding staircase to the top of the castle tower for picture-worthy views of the old city. If time allows, browse the Galerija Rustika for high-quality Slovene handicrafts.
Next visit the National Museum of Contemporary History housed in an 18th-century building in picturesque Tivoli Park. The museum explores the history of the area and its turbulent fight for sovereignty. Look for exhibits on both world wars.
In the evenings, venture down to the banks of the Ljubljanica River to enjoy dinner and drinks at one of the many open-air cafes or enjoy live music in one of the pubs or wine bars. Ljubljana has plenty of discos, clubs and casinos to keep the party going well into the morning.
Three months — Sept. 14-16County Donegal, Ireland: 112.49 pounds round trip
Fly Ryanair and AerArann from London Stansted to Donegal.
Summer is the perfect time of year for exploring the Donegal Bay area with its rugged coastline that leads you straight to the Atlantic Ocean.
Rent a car at the airport and make a short drive south to the coastal town of Bundoran, where you can sit back on the beach with an ice cream and watch surfers. There are plenty of shops with equipment for rent or purchase, altough it is not the place for a first-time surfer.
Visitors should take the time to stop and enjoy the breathtaking views of sea, fields, hills and mountains on the way back up the impressive coast. In Rossnowlagh, visit the golden beach that offers a fantastic view of the Slieve League sea cliffs or the Franciscan Friary that overlooks the bay. At the friary visit the Donegal Historical Museum or take one of the many rhododendron-lined paths to be explored.
Next visit the town of Donegal to explore the city’s triangular center called the Diamond, home to hotels, craft shops and tourist outlets. The Donegal castle has been beautifully restored with free guided tours.
In Killybegs, visitors can explore the pier, sand dune-covered beaches and caves that run along the coast or visit the Marie McGready shop for hand-painted silk scarves. The adventuresome can try the Donegal Bay Safaris that tour the bay in high-speed rigid inflatable boats.
Airfare prices include estimated taxes and are courtesy of the Web site www.skyscanner.net. Prices were verified as of Monday afternoon when Stripes UK went to press. Deals are not guaranteed to be available; restrictions may apply.