We stayed in the Tralee area for a few nights and tried to plan a different driving route each day we had available. Lucky for us the weather cooperated every day and it was in the 70s and sunny, perfect driving weather. We loved driving the Dingle Peninsula, but we were beyond excited for the Ring of Kerry route!
Thanks to our wonderful Airbnb hosts (Seamus and Ada), we made a plan the night prior for our trip and had a bunch of spots mapped out for our drive. While we loved the great sightseeing spots most people hit, the scenery and green throughout the drive was just as beautiful.
The Kerry Cliffs were our first stop and we couldn’t believe the amazing views. There was a small entrance and parking fee, but it was totally worth it. There are cows and sheep grazing in fields, and a funny friendly dog welcomed us at the gate! We thought we were pretty special as he followed us around, but as soon as someone offered him a treat we got ditched. Oh well.
The pictures do not do the spot justice.
We would highly recommend a stop here if you decide to visit the Kerry area during a trip. There is a little shop to stop for a coffee or quick bite on site, so you can easily spend a couple hours wandering around, snapping photos, and enjoying a warm cup of joe. The coffee would come in handy on most days I assume, but we got lucky with a warm day, so it wasn’t needed. 🙂
Driving up and down mountains and winding through various steep passes were a sure highlight as well. We loved every second of it, except maybe Matt didn’t enjoy the tight head-on passing situations with tour buses a couple times. Still, you simply don’t get these views back home.
Making a stop at Skelligs Chocolates was put on the daily itinerary as soon as Seamus mentioned it back at the house. It is only slightly off the regular route, but our trusty GPS got us there and it also allowed us to see more countryside we otherwise would have missed.
We stopped in for a quick chocolate tasting, which consisted of 6 to 7 different truffles, brittles and infused chocolates. All were delicious! Matt’s favorite was a dark chocolate truffle, while Alana’s was a orange infused dark (typical). We bought some whiskey dark chocolate truffles for a book club & whiskey/spirit fingers club back in Minneapolis. And we are happy to report the chocolate made it back to U.S. without being consumed and it was well received by the club!
Ladies View lookout was another spot with incredible views and small walking paths for those who want to do a little exploring. We enjoyed walking some of the paths and taking a break from the car.
Ladies view was a pretty busy spot, since we ended up there the same time as three tour buses. We have been trying to be more accepting of the crowds, so we usually walk the other direction and enjoy our time while waiting on people to leave. We might have spent more time at certain areas, but getting a little space to yourselves for pictures is worth it to us.
As we approached Killarney, I couldn’t help but sing Bing Crosby’s song ‘It’s Christmas in Killarney’, which caused Alana to look at me funny. She could not remember it, even though it is on a CD that basically plays on repeat over Christmas back home. I explained the scene in the car to Seamus and Ada once we got back and they happily found the song and played it for us. Alana then, sort of remembered. 🙂
Killarney National Park was our last stop of the day, but one we wanted to make sure we got to enjoy. So, in addition to spending some time in the late afternoon, we actually went back the following day for more! It is a large park with lots of hiking and biking trails. The lake was calm and has many great spots to stop and enjoy a snack or a picnic.
We decided to walk and hike around different parts of the park, which was a slow and enjoyable pace for us. We might have been able to see more if we had rented bikes, but we decided against it. Really, either way is fine, we just preferred to walk each day.
Another fantastic day exploring Ireland.
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