Ireland is one of the most magical countries in the world with its unique landscape, rugged coastline and quaint colourful towns that dot the county side. The Ring of Kerry is a loop at the heart of County Kerry that flows through many small villages that showcases the uniqueness, Beauty and charm of Ireland. On the third day of the 7 day tour you will get to travel along the world famous Ring of Kerry and stop at the port in Portmagee. From there we will take a ferry to Skellig Michael, one of Ireland’s holiest places and one of only two UNESCO World heritage sites in Ireland, more on that later! Join us on a blog-tour of the ring of Kerry!
Killarney is where the ring of Kerry begins. In the tourism game for more than 250 years, this gorgeous little town is in the background of one of the largest national parks in Ireland. This town is full to the brim with bars, restaurants, deep history and curious culture. There is something for everyone in Killarney which has a reputation for the most enthusiastic and friendliest people in Kerry. You’ll be in good hands in Killarney! Remember to also have a gaze upon Kerry’s crown jewel: Ireland’s tallest mountain, Carrauntoohil, at 3,406 feet.
Kenmare is a picturesque town on the coast of the Iveragh Peninsula, following the ring of Kerry. Bórd Fáilte recognised the historical, cultural and environmental significance of Kenmare by bestowing upon it the title of Kerry’s first Heritage Town. The town’s rugged beauty is beyond compare, traffic is minimal and it abounds with archaeological sites and spectacular views. You’ll be spoiled with the magnificent views you’ll get to experience on your coach ride.
Sneem is a small quiet village further down the ring of Kerry. This town is said to be the easiest to live in. The town has a laid back and comfortable way of living life. The town is located between large gently growing mountains and a rocky cold coast line. It also lies on the estuary of the river ‘Sneem’. It is well worth a visit and makes for some great pictures.
Caherdaniel is a magnificent holiday destination for all. With its colourful landscape and deep waterways it creates a beautiful site on the coast of Kerry. Caherdaniel begins in the wonderful valley of Glenmore with its stunning lakes and rivers and is world famous for fishing. When you drive from Loher Fort and over the Coomakista Pass, you will be blown away by the views overlooking Derrynane Harbour, Scariff and Deenish Islands, Kenmare Bay and the vast Amazing Atlantic Ocean. Complete with sandy white beaches and clear crystal waters, it’s a place you’ll want to stay!
Waterville. As we head closer to the middle of the ring we see the phenomenal Atlantic coastline open up more and more. Watch the water wash and lap on the beautiful sea front and visit the fresh water lake of Lough Currane sits. Waterville is famous for the iconic Charlie Chaplin who used to holiday in Waterville whenever he could. Walk down the sea front promenade and read all about Charlie Chaplin’s history with this sweet little seaside town.
Ballinskelligs is the perfect village to immerse yourself in the traditional Irish culture. Ballinskeilligs is one of the only remaining counties in Ireland that speaks mostly in Gaelic in the small community. This ancient town can date back to the 5th century and the monks. It can be connected to the iconic Skelligs rocks which can be seen in the deep blue horizon! The village has a beautiful Irish charm to it and the white wispy beaches here are just something else!
Portmagee is definitely one of the highlights on the spectacular ring of Kerry. This town is your stepping stone to the unique and breath-taking Skelligs. On this headland surrounded by winding sea ways and small rocky islands lives this small post card worthy town. The main street of Portmagee is lined with rainbow coloured houses complete with a friendly community spirit. Drop into the Moorings and have a pint in this traditional Kerry pub. Here you can get some scrumptious fresh seafood, a cold pint and learn more about the history behind the Skeilligs and the star wars filming that took place on the Island. Weather permitting we can jump aboard and make our way by boat to these dramatic rock formations. Over 1400 years ago Skellig Michael became home to a small group of men seeking religious solitude and isolation on one of the most extraordinary locations on earth. Climb 600 vertigo-inducing steps that spiral up the rock toward the terraces of the monastery where you can see the still intact beehive huts and experience the views that you’ll remember for a lifetime! You can view the unique flora and fauna that is indigenous to the islands like the world’s second-largest colony of gannets that call little Skeillig home.
Cahersiveen is the next town we visit on our ring of Kerry journey. This lively little town is just outside the gorgeous Valentia Island. It is one of the westernmost towns in Europe. It has remained principally a market town down the centuries and never fully enjoyed the benefits of the tourist industry perhaps making it one of the more original towns on the Ring of Kerry. Enjoy the shops and souvenirs that can be bought here and experience that classic Kerry charm.
Kells is a tiny fishing village that is remarkably small and quiet. With a white sandy blue flag beach its perfect for a chilly swim or just a sit down and a fantastic view of the dramatic and vast dingle bay that pans out in front of you.
Glenbeigh is also known as ‘the jewel of Kerry’; I think that statement speaks for itself! Visit the six miles of golden, sandy, blue flag Rossbeigh Beach or the peace and beauty of the rivers and lakes. Glenbeigh is cosily tucked in to the surrounding horseshoe of hills and Seefin Mountains. The Caragh River and the Behy River flow at either side of the village into Castlemaine Harbour.
Killorglin is known as a thriving little village at the end of the ring of Kerry. Killorglin is situated in the heart of Kerry on the River Laune. This town on a hill is best known for one of Ireland’s oldest, longest and unusual festivals, Puck Fair. On the 10th, 11th and 12th of August has its origins in the mists of time, and is Ireland’s oldest street festival. According to the legends it is celebrated because a stampede of wild goats ran through the town warning the residents of the approach of Cromwell’s Army. The town now on these date pay respect to the goat and have it raised on a scaffold for all to worship. This is a quirky cute little town great for a wander. Enjoy some great pubs, renowned restaurants and cosy cafes. It is home to the award winning Killorglin Cheese from Wilma’s Cheese Farm and local honey is made up at Sunhill by the Curran family
Beaufort, last but not least! Rich in heritage, Beaufort holds over 100 historic attractions more notably Old Dunloe Castle and Corr Castle, Churchtown old church ruins, Old Church ruins of St. Gobnait in Kilgobnet, Ogham Stones in Coolmagort, Ardraw Earthern Fort, and many Ring/ Fairy Forts. It is a town that is really steeped in history and tradition. Close by are the majestic McGillycuddy Reeks, one of Kerry’s largest set of mountains. This town is known for its salmon and brown trout fishing in the River Laune. The scenic landscape is breath-taking and is the perfect place to end your ring of Kerry adventure. ‘But what is the Ring of Kerry? Well, it’s a route. A trail. A road. But this is no ordinary road.’ You’ll surely enjoy the coach journey around this iconic trail. The kingdom of Kerry is waiting to be discovered by you on our Wild Atlantic Way-South tour- 7 days.