When visiting new places what better information can you gather than that of the locals. We are delighted to share local knowledge of some great things to discover in Kerry. The following are tips and information from locals, who of course, love Kerry and are passionate about their beautiful county. So here is our locals top 12 Things to Do in Kerry.
1. Tralee to Fenit Greenway – Tralee/Fenit
The Tralee Fenit Greenway runs for 14km from the heart of Tralee, the county capital of Kerry to the scenic coastal village and port of Fenit. The Fenit branch railway was opened in 1887 and was closed for regular passenger traffic in 1935 but remained in use for goods traffic as well as excursions and summer specials until 1978. A 3km section of the route within the Tralee urban area has recently been converted to a greenway and will officially be open to the public within the coming months. The line is in the ownership of Kerry County Council as is the North Kerry railway. More Information
and will officially be open to the public within the coming months
2. Kerry Camino – Tralee to Dingle Peninsula
The Kerry Camino is a Tralee initiative to promote walking in the area, specifically the walk known also as The Dingle Way between Tralee and Dingle. The Kerry Camino is made up of 3 sections.On the Kerry camino a walker uses a Passport and stamping stations on the route to mark their progress. Passports are available for free from local tourist offices. Certificates are issued by Tralee and Dingle Tourist offices on production of a completed passport.
Stamping Locations along the route
- O Shea ‘s filling Station Blennerville
- The Junction Bar in Camp
- The Railway Tavern in Camp
- Hanafin’s Bar in Annascaul
- The South Pole in Annascaul
- Brian Keane, Checkout Shop in Lispole
3. Bromore Cliffs – Ballybunion
Bromore’s sheer 180 foot cliffs have been sculpted by nature for thousands of years. Winter storms and the Wild Atlantic have formed headlands and bays and carved deep caves at sea level some of which later progressed to become arches and sea stacks. Minerals seeping through the layers of flagstone that form Bromore Cliffs give them their ever changing colours.
The walk along the cliff top is safe, easy, well fenced and suitable for all ages (of course children must be supervised). The pathways are fenced for the safety of the visitors and for the protection of the environment and its unique flora and fauna. Bromore Cliffs is on a family farm and is owned and managed by Mike and Eilish Flahive. The viewing areas were carefully selected in consultation with The National Parks and Wildlife, The National Monuments and the local authority Kerry County Council. They were positioned to minimise damage or disturbance to the Wildlife or the Prehistoric Forts.
Bromore Cliffs are on The Wild Atlantic Way and are also included in The Lower Shannon SAC (Special Area of Conservation) one of the prime wildlife areas in the country important on a European as well as Irish level. For a unique experience why not get Mike or Danny to accompany you along Bromore Cliffs. They will entertain and enlighten you on the legends, history and the wildlife of the area.
4. Skellig Six 18 Distillery – Cahersiveen
Skellig Six 18 Distillery & Visitor Experience is located right the Coastline, in Cahersiveen where the mountains meet the sea. The same wild landscape that motivated sixth-century monks to build their monastery 11km out in the Atlantic Ocean. From a small landing cove on granite rock, they crafted six hundred and eighteen steps to reach their monastery on the top of Skellig Michael. This feat, their journey, inspires Skellig Six18 today.
A uniquely Irish craft gin that captures the essence of its home on the Skellig Coast. The makers have explored, foraged and collaborated for the best the land and sea has to offer, rolling off the Atlantic Ocean to the woodland to create a gin that can be made in Cahersiveen.
With stunning views of the Skellig Coast, the Distillery & Visitor Experience is an epic stop along the scenic Ring of Kerry and Wild Atlantic Way routes. Step inside the home of Skellig Six18, where every drop of Irish Pot Distilled Gin is made, right in its homeland of Cahersiveen. Learn about the plans for Single Pot Still Irish Whiskey, its place, the people and what it truly means to enjoy the journey. Visitors can experience a fully guided tour of the operating gin distillery and relax with a gin tasting experience. Discover the story of Skellig Six18 with an immersive audio-visual experience and learn about the journey of discovery taken to create this unique Irish Gin. More Information
5. Kerry Writers Museum – Listowel
Ignite your imagination and discover a dreamworld, a whole world of magic told by the Seanachaí – the bearer of Irish folklore. Embark on a journey set against the canvas of some of the greatest wordsmiths the country has ever seen. There will be mystery, there will be murder, there will be love, there will be comedy and then there will be more magic.
At Kerry Writers’ Museum you will be immersed in the universes of John B. Keane (The Field), Bryan MacMahon, Brendan Kennelly, Maurice Walsh (The Quiet Man) and George Fitzmaurice in a dizzying swirl of words. Follow the museum mascot Púca the Hare on an interactive story trail.
Step back in time and discover the history of Ireland’s ancient landscape at ‘Listowel through the Ages’ interactive exhibition. Explore Medieval Ireland and the Famine, the turbulent years of War and Independence. Encounter enchanted underwater cities, rebellious Knights, and the world’s strangest train! Experience how the great works of the Kerry Writers were influenced by their environment. The museum has a unique audio-visual with stunning images and the written words of the writers John B Keane, Bryan McMahon, George Fitzmaurice, Brendan Kennelly and Maurice Walsh. Listowel Craft Hub is located here and features a selection of locally produced crafts, pottery, jewellery and textile art. More Information
6. The Blasket Centre – Dingle Peninsula
With stunning views of the wild Atlantic coast and islands at the halfway point of the Slea Head Drive, the Blasket Centre is a fascinating heritage and cultural centre/ museum, honouring the unique community who lived on the remote Blasket Islands until their evacuation in 1953.
The Blasket Centre tells the story of island life, subsistence fishing and farming, traditional life including modes of work and transport, home life, housing and entertainment. The Centre details the community’s struggle for existence, their language and culture, and the extraordinary literary legacy they left behind- classics such as The Islandman, Twenty Years A-Growing, and Peig. Their story is told using a variety of means – exhibitions, interactive displays, artefacts, audio visual presentations and artworks. Visible from the Centre is Great Blasket Island. Tours of the deserted village on the island are also available. There is a bookshop on site, as well as museum and archive facilities, workshop and language rooms. A restaurant – ‘An tIascaire’ – is available on site and provides free wifi. Tours of the Centre are available, and take approximately one hour. More Information
7. Lickeen Woods Looped Walk – Glencar, Reeks District
Lickeen is situated on the Iveragh Peninsula in the very picturesque Glencar Valley. Blackstones Bridge, a local landmark, is just a short stroll up the road. The area falls within the SAC or Special Area of Conservation of the Caragh River Catchment. It is one of the most important salmonid rivers in the South West of Ireland and is a very popular salmon and trout fishing destination. The woodland itself was once part of the Lansdowne Estate and is classified as old woodland. Caragh Lake is in the vicinity as are the MacGillycuddy’s Reeks, of which there are many opportunities to get great views from the picnic area. There are many things to do in this area as recommended below:
Walk: There are three looped waymarked trails to help you explore the wood. Castle Rock Loop (2.0km, 1 hour, strenuous, green) will guide you through the forest, climbing to about 90m before you descend into an atmospheric ravine before continuing back on forest roads to the trailhead. Lickeen Loop (2.2km 1 hour, moderate, blue) takes in the landmark of Blackstones Bridge before leading you along a trail adjacent to the Caragh River before looping back via the Wood. The Kerry LIFE Loop (3.1km, 1½ hours, strenuous, purple) is the wider loop that incorporates the best bits of the above. The EU LIFE Project LIFE13 NAT/IE/000144 – LIFE Kerry – Sustainable land use management for the conservation of the freshwater pearl mussel is on-going in this area. The iconic Kerry Way (214km, 9 days, strenuous, yellow) also passes through Lickeen.
Fish: Check locally regarding permits and licences.
Scenic drive: The driving routes in this part of Kerry are widely regarded as having some of the most beautiful scenery in the country. More Information
8. Innisfallen Island – Killarney National Park
Innisfallen island can be seen in the distance from Ross Castle out beyond the entrance to the bay. A monastery was founded on Innisfallen in the 7th century and it became a seat of learning and it is said that King Brian Boru studied there. On the island are the remains of the extensive 12th century Augustinian priory and a small 11th -12th century Romanesque church. The annals of Innisfallen, a major source of early Irish history and now stored in the Bodleian Library in Oxford were written there.
Innisfallen is the largest island on Lough Leane, which is the largest of the three Lakes of Killarney. When most visitors visit Innisfallen Island they depart from Ross Castle with boat trips to the island operating from Ross and Reen piers. The waterbus tours do not land on the island however you will be able to see the ruins of the Abbey as you pass by. If you would prefer to row out or kayak tour guides are available to assist with this and can be booked locally. As the island has no facilities you are advised to bring anything you may need with you before departing. Ross Castle has toilet facilities and during summer months has a cafe. More Information
9. Glanteenasig Woods – Dingle Peninsula
Glanteenassig is an outdoor enthusiasts dreamland with over 450 hectares of woodland, mountain, lake and peatland to explore. Nestled in a sheltered valley among the Slieve Mish mountains, the landscape is imposing and awesome . To reach it the visitor must step off the beaten track, travel up the valley and feel the remoteness of the mountains. Behind the trees the area abounds with streams, lakes, waterfalls and dramatic cliffs which characterise this untamed landscape. At certain points, views of Brandon & Tralee Bay and the Maharees can be enjoyed. There are a selection of walks and picnic areas dotted around the site to be enjoyed. More Information
10. Kells Bay House & Gardens – Kells Bay
One of Kerry’s treasures and Kells Bay Gardens is one of Europe’s premier horticultural experiences, containing a renowned collection of Tree-ferns and other exotic plants growing in its unique microclimate created by the Gulf Stream. It is the home of ‘The SkyWalk’ Ireland’s longest rope-bridge.
11. Derrynane House – Derrynane
Derrynane stands at the very tip of the Iveragh Peninsula in Co. Kerry. Sheltered within the woodland stands Derrynane House, the ancestral home of Daniel O’Connell, lawyer, politician and statesman, and one of the great figures in modern Irish history.
Today some 120 hectares (300 acres) of the lands of Derrynane, together with Derrynane House, make up Derrynane National Historic Park, under the management of National Historic Properties of the Office of Public Works. The House also boasts a beautiful tearoom which is open from March until December. Dog-walking is permitted, but dogs must be kept on a lead in public areas. There is designated special needs parking available in Derrynane, and the house and gardens have level access. There is a lift present in Derrynane House, and an induction loop system at reception. More Information
12. Valentia Island – Iveragh Peninsula
More commonly called The Ring of Kerry, is a beautiful 175km road that runs through incredible scenery both land and see. Sometimes this tour is done from Killarney in a day. However what an incredible few days you would have but doing this and stopping off and staying over at some of the most beautiful towns you have ever sent. Venture to the Rink of Skellig at the very tip which has an incredible landscape of mountains, lakes and long ocean views. More information
Enjoy Kerry! We hope you enjoyed our top travellers picks from locals, just some of the unexplored areas of Kerry if you want to go off the beaten track a bit.