1) Tapas with Paolo Tullio, October 9-14
Renowned food critic and former restaurateur Paolo Tullio teams up with Travel Department for a five-night tapas tour of Barcelona. Join them from €779pp. traveldepartment.ie.
2) Lismore Castle Tea & Tour, September 29
Tea and scones in the Duke of Devonshire’s banqueting hall are followed by an overview of the history of the castle by head butler Denis Nevin. This rare event has two sittings, at 3pm and 5pm. €20pp; lismorecastlearts.ie.
3) Turkish Delights, October 5 &12
Turkey (pictured) continues to provide some of the best package holiday deals around. Sunway has a week with four-star accommodation in Kusadasi from €399pp. sunway.ie.
4) Russborough by Candlelight, November 9th &16th
Follow in the footsteps of Sir Alfred and Lady Beit with candlelit tours, music and light bites on November 16th (€45pp), or a full dinner on November 9th (€75pp). russborough.ie.
5) Vegas High Roller, Autumn 2013
The latest addition to Sin City’s Strip is a 550-foot Big Wheel. Dwarfing even the London Eye, it will be the world’s largest when it opens this autumn. Lasvegas.com.
6) Barrow Way App
Waterways Ireland and Ingenious Ireland team up to create an app and audio guide for the River Barrow. Expect stories, maps, wildlife and heritage aplenty along the course of Ireland’s second-longest river. ingeniousireland.ie & waterwaysireland.org.
7) The Wedding & Honeymoon Show, September 7-8
Ireland’s largest autumn wedding show takes place at the RDS in Dublin, but it’s not all frocks and frills. 250 exhibitors include honeymoon experts, tour operators like TravelMood, and lots of show-only offers. The trip of a lifetime could start here. weddingbells.ie
8) Premier Football Sea-son…
The Premier League has kicked off, and Irish Ferries is offering day trips by coach, inclusive of match tickets and return ferry travel from €169pp return. irishferries.com.
9) Kilkenny Trails Festival, September 1-29
A whole month of events designed to get punters hiking, biking, kayaking, picnicking, bird-watching and even scavenging in the Kilkenny countryside. Trailkilkenny.ie.
10) 2-for-1 on Broadway… Sept 2-15
Broadway Week returns this autumn, with two-for-one tickets available for 19 popular shows, including Spiderman and Once. nycgo.com/broadwayweek.
11) TBEX Dublin, October 3-4
TBEX is the world’s largest gathering of travel bloggers, and this autumn, it’s coming to Dublin. The European Conference will see scores of social media butterflies descend on the capital, with huge kickback in online buzz. Tbexcon.com.
12) Skiing for singles, 2013/14
New for the coming season, singles specialist Friendship Travel has just launched a ski and snowboarding site with options in France, Austria and Italy. Singlesskiholidays.com.
13) Oktoberfest, October 2
Yes, there’s beer. But there’s much more besides. Contiki has a four-day trip to Munich, including flights, day trips, transfers and accommodation in a tented village from €585pp. Oh, and there’s a free T-shirt too… contiki.com.
14) Dublin’s Festival Season
Need an excuse to visit Dublin? Here are four. The Dublin Theatre Festival 2013, (September 26th – October 13th), Oktoberfest (September 19th – October – 6th) Hard Working Class Heroes 2013 (October 3rd – 5th) and the Bram Stoker Festival (October 25th – 27th) – and that’s just the beginnings of what’s on offer in festival season. Dublinfestivalseason.com.
15) Smoke-free beaches, Hawaii
Hawaii has signed a new policy making its beaches smoke-free – no ifs and butts, either, as its enforced by beach lifeguards. Could the same happen in Ireland? Gohawaii.com.
16) Paddle like a Pirate Queen, Sept 13-15
Wilderness Ireland has a guided sea-kayaking expedition following in Grace O’Malley’s wake, from Achill Island to Clew Bay and Connemara. Expect mountains, castles, drumlins and swashbuckling galore. Six nights from €1,250pp. wildernessireland.com.
17) Wine harvest on the Camino, September
September’s agreeable climate makes it the perfect month for walking holidays, and the end of the month also marks ‘Vendimia’ time: grape harvest. Camino Ways has an 8-day traipse through Galicia and the Rías Baixas wine region from €689pp. caminoways.com.
18) Open House Dublin, October 4-6
It’s the biggest celebration of architecture in Ireland. Almost 100 buildings normally closed to the public open to reveal what goes on behind closed doors, with free tours led by professionals and enthusiasts. Knock, knock. Openhousedublin.com.
19) Flightfest, September 15
30 aircraft, ranging from helicopters and historic planes to the A380 Superjumbo, will fly along the path of the River Liffey over Dublin. Roger that. Flightfest.ie.
20) Turner Prize, October 23- January 5
The Turner Prize 2013 will be presented in Derry, the first-time it has ever been held outside England. A fitting end to a fantastic year for the UK City of Culture. Discovernorthernireland.com.
21) Aer Lingus Sale of Your Dreams
That’s right folks. Britain from €20.99, Europe from €39.99 and the US from €219 (one-way), as long as you book before Sept. 11th.
An abridged version of this list appeared in The Irish Examiner.