Autumn travel ideas: KerryPosted on: 26 September 2018 by 50connect editorial
One of Ireland's best kept secrets is begging to be explored and the splendid colours of autumn make Kerry ideal for a memorable short break.
Fed up of rigorous airport security measures? Want to get away but also want the thrill of the open road? Why not check out of one of our ongoing European destinations, available to reach by car, train, bus, motorbike or even bicycle.
On a great drive, the destination never surpasses the journey. In Europe, with the densest highway system in the world, good roads are easy to find, but picture postcard hideaways, tranquil, idyllic towns and bustling, beautiful, historic cities can be found almost on your doorstep.
With a map in hand and a port crossing, some of the world’s finest cities can be found within a few hours of reaching land and some of the drives that follow can capture even the most pedestrian imagination.
There are regular services to France, Belgium, Holland, Ireland, the Channel Islands, Isle of Man, Denmark and even Norway and Spain available from selected UK ports so if you fancy an alternative way of travelling why not take the car.
County Kerry, in south-west Ireland, is regarded as perhaps the most scenic county in the country and is certainly the most renowned for its spectacular sights, holding a special place in Irish culture.
It forms part of the province of Munster and also features the most westerly points of both mainland Ireland and Europe.
About the area
Kerry is often referred to as “the Kingdom”, as it is believed to be the closest thing to Heaven on earth.
The county is an endless source of pleasant surprises and entertainment. With its spectacular scenery, including Killarney's magical lakes, the rugged Atlantic coastline with superb unspoilt beaches, Tralee with its annual 'Rose' festival, mountains, lakes and rivers to delight the hill walker or angler, and a range of world-class golf courses - Kerry has plenty of delights awaiting discovery
Sculptured by the wonders of the ice-age and caressed by the waters of the Gulf Stream, the county is a place steeped in ancient history and folklore. It boasts a treasure trove of pre-historic buildings and monuments, many of which are remarkably well preserved and cared for.
The county claims some of Ireland's most dramatic scenery, including the world-renowned Lakes of Killarney and the awe-inspiring landscapes of the Beara and Dingle peninsulas. There is much to see and do here with angling, walking, deep sea diving, golf and leisurely sightseeing a must for the visitor.
If coming by car, the most convenient port to arrive in Ireland for a trip to Kerry would be Rosslare in county Wexford on the south-east coast. Ferries regularly leave South Wales from Fishguard and Pembroke for Rosslare and once in Ireland, the scenic journey from east to west is 160 miles.
Elsewhere, ferries depart from Liverpool and Holyhead to Dublin. From the country’s capital a journey to the south-west is just over 190 miles.
If you don’t fancy the ferry trip, Kerry does have its own small international airport at Farranfore, between the county town of Tralee and Killarney. The airport is served by Ryanair and Aer Arann and has scheduled flights to and from Dublin, London Stansted, London Luton and Manchester airports.
If flying direct to Kerry is difficult, flights can also be arranged to nearby Cork Airport or Shannon.
By rail or bus
If you’re starting your journey from Dublin, regular rail and bus services leave to Kerry's main towns Killarney, Faranfore and Tralee whilst Cork is also well connected with its neighbouring county.
Sites and attractions
The Ring of Kerry is the best known area of natural beauty in Ireland. It is a 120 mile circuit around the Iveragh Peninsula in south Kerry passing through Killarney, Killorglin, Glenbeigh, Caherciveen, Waterville, Sneem and Kenmare.
The unspoilt and mystical region has attracted visitors for hundreds of years because of its spectacular natural sights. It is a haven for walking, cycling, fishing and watersports enthusiasts. The lakes, loughs and streams in the Ring of Kerry offer some of the very best in Europe for salmon and trout fishing.
Above all the Ring of Kerry provides an amazing insight into the ancient heritage of Ireland, so see the Iron Age Forts & Ogham Stones, Old Monasteries and a landscape carved out of rock by the last Ice Age 10,000 years ago. Visitors to the south of Ireland should not miss a trip to the Ring of Kerry.
The scenic Rossbeigh beach in Glenbeigh is one of the county’s best kept secrets. With 8km of golden sand and panoramic views of the surrounding mountains, it’s Kerry's most popular and one of Ireland’s most beautiful seaside areas.
The west side of Rossbeigh facing the Atlantic ocean is perfect for surfing or windsurfing, whilst the east side is protected somewhat from Atlantic breezes, making it great for beach games, canoeing and learning how to windsurf.
Where to stay
Scotts Hotel Killarney - The family-owned Scott's Hotel has been a landmark in Killarney for decades. Ideally situated right in the heart of Killarney, just 50 metres from the central bus and train station, Scott's is a traditional Irish hotel. Double rooms for a weekend stay start at around 105 euro.
Dromhall Hotel - Killarney’s famous mountain scenes provide a splendid backdrop for the Dromhall Hotel in Killarney. This 4 Star Killarney Hotel is conveniently located a mere 5 minutes walk from Killarney town centre making it an ideal base for all. Within easy reach of the National Park, lakes, Ross Castle, Muckross House and the region's famous golf courses. Dromhall is a popular weekend destination at reasonable rates - longer stays are discounted.
The Dunloe - is a 5 star luxury property overlooking the famous "Gap of Dunloe" and River Laune. It is set amid 64 acres of parkland with 20 acres of sub-tropical gardens accredited to the "Distinguished Gardens of Ireland" leading to the ruins of the old medieval castle itself. For those of you looking to unwind, the hotel boasts excellent leisure facilities including a 25-metre pool, a sauna, steam room and an exercise room. Garden rooms start from 420 euro per person for a two night stay.
Discover Irleand - Excellent information source to help you make the most of your break.
Tourism Ireland - The official website for tourism in Ireland.
Ferry Crossings - Book a ferry crossing from the UK to Ireland.
Skyscanner - Find the cheapest flights to Kerry, Cork, Shannon or Dublin from your local airport.
Irish Rail - If looking to travel into Kerry from any area of Ireland, you can prebook your tickets online at the Irish Rail website.
Bus Eireann - Ireland's extensive network of bus routes can be found in details on the official Bus Eireann website.
Imagine Ireland - If you don't fancy a formal hotel stay and want to slef cater, Imagine Ireland has more than 1000 Irish holiday cottages on its website.
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