Welcome to another travelog around Ireland! This time I’m taking you with me to the most visited part of Ireland, County Kerry and Killarney town.
If you haven’t been to Kerry at least once, you haven’t been to Ireland! Masses of tourists in tourbuses driving from Dublin through Cliffs of Moher to Kerry to gush over the real Irish nature, to visit Skellig Michael where the latest Star Wars have been shot, so they could cross out another thing from their bucket list.
Killarney is a small town with approx. 20,000 inhabitants which lives basically only from tourism. We noticed that on our arrival but let’s start from the beginning.
Killarney is located on the west of county Kerry, approx. one and half hours from Cork. Right by the town you can find Killarney National Park, a place where all the tourists are going to. And don’t get me wrong there are certainly a couple of reasons to visit this park. If you ever plan to visit the park, go by a car. Not only that’s more comfortable but there are so many amazing views that you will be deciding where to stop. A bus driver wouldn’t stop for you wherever you wanted to.
We didn’t head to the National Park ’cause a) we don’t have a car and b) I wanted to explore Killarney town and pay a visit to Ross castle. Well, if you’ve been reading my blog for a while now you know I always have the best ideas.
We traveled to Killarney by bus all the way from Waterford. We had to change in Cork and we could really tell that we are heading towards one of the most visited places in Ireland – the bus was full of old people only. And like completely booked out. The weather, however, was on our side – it was warm and super hot – a perfect trip day!
When we finally reached Killarney after four hours on the road, the plan was clear: visit the castle, have a snack, return to the town and explore it. Ah, to get from the bus station to the castle took us nearly an hour ’cause the town was flooding with people. There was hurling on or soccer or other ball game we didn’t give a damn about, so the whole town was like super full, the cars couldn’t get through and we were so fed up with everything after five minutes.
To reach the castle, you need to walk through the town and then walk alongside nice and well kept road towards the National Park. Along the way you will notice horse racetrack and some tourists here and there. Whoever can take a car to the castle or avail of horse carriage. According to Google it takes approx. 30 minutes to reach the castle by foot from the town. To me it felt longer but I wasn’t checking the time.
When we reached the castle there weren’t much people around. To get into the castle you have to pay of course. We weren’t interested in such so we ate our snacks and went for a walk around the lake. And that was an enjoyment! Wonderful views towards the Ross castle with mountain ridges emerging in the background or a view towards a much farther mountain range dividing Tralee and Dingle (11/10 would recommend!).
On our way back to the castle we noticed some deer, mum gave some grass a whistle so I could take the following:
I would also like to say that I am against all carriages with horses and never take part in any of these activities. However, all coachmen were Irish all the way through – kept smiling, thanking when we let them through, joking with us about which way to take to Dublin .. these interactions always make my day.
We drove through the town a long time ago but I somehow only remembered a lane full of hotels and hostels. This time I wanted to visit the town properly and take photos, too. Unfortunately, as mentioned in the beginning, a sport match was on and there were huge amounts of people everywhere. Have a look for yourself:
We have, however, took something from our visit in Killarney – comparing to Waterford all shops in the centre are open to business (there are couple of them bankrupting every year in Waterford) and nicely painted as you know them from postcards or the internet. We also passed by a donut shop and a vegan place!
I absolutely loved the visit of the castle. It was my first time and not only I liked the castle but the views, guys! I do recommend to add this spot to your Kerry itinerary, if only for a quick 30 minutes break. With regards to the town, I definitely need to come back and walk it through properly (and google waaay before to ensure there are no huge events going on).
And one more thing at the end for all enthusiastic travelers and nature lovers – a bit behind the Killarney National Park on the way to the ocean there is another mountain range and a mountain called Carrauntoohil. That’s the highest Irish mountain. So chop chop hike it!
Don’t forget to follow me on Instagram @moonfell44 as I will be once again share photos which didn’t make the article cut – on both regular feed and Stories.