IDEAS FOR A RING OF KERRY ROAD TRIP
Imagine yourself walking along rugged sea cliffs and taking in the sweeping views of the Ring of Kerry. You could also wander through ancient Celtic monuments, walk along green hills, and sail to remote islands. Sit in a typical pub tasting the local brew and listen to live Irish music.
Pick one of our tailor-made tours of Ireland to immerse yourself in the stunning scenery and historic sights. The ideal Irish holiday consists of exploring the cities as well as the countryside, to take in the culture, history and beauty of the Emerald Isle.
Good to know: All of Nordic Visitor’s Ireland self-drive tour packages can be tailored by our regional experts. They can add extra nights at select locations or modify the driving routes if you have any particular attractions in mind. Just ask!
What is the Ring of Kerry and its points of interest?
Located in the southwest of Ireland, the Ring of Kerry drive refers to the scenic tourist trail around the Iveragh Peninsula. It is part of the famous Wild Atlantic Way along the west coast and is one of Ireland’s most spectacular road trips.
The route is 111 miles (179 kilometres) long and starts in Killarney. It follows the N71 road down to Kenmare, then across to Cahersiveen, up to Glenbeigh and back to Killarney. While most drive the ring clockwise, we recommend going counterclockwise to avoid the tour buses and other tourist traffic.
You can make this journey in a day, or take longer to explore as much as you wish.
Driving the Ring of Kerry will allow you to witness plenty of breathtaking landscapes. The sights will include high mountain passes, stunning sandy beaches, pristine lakes and plenty of wildlife.
Here are the top 10 things to do during your Ring of Kerry drive:
Wander through the lush Killarney National Park and visit Ross Castle
Sail to Skellig Michael to see the out-of-this-world Star Wars filming location
Explore the ancient stone forts of Caherdaniel and Staigue
Hike along Ireland’s highest mountain range, the MacGillycuddy Reeks
Photograph the picturesque Torc Waterfall
Visit historical sites, such as Muckross House and its nearby abbey
Follow the Skellig Ring to admire the views of the Kerry coastline from Valentia Island
Take a horse and carriage ride along the impressive Gap of Dunloe
Stop by Ladies View for an excellent vantage point on the landscape
Spend a sunny day at Derrynane Bay and visit the nearby Derrynane House
Want to go on a Ring of Kerry and Ireland road trip?
Did we tickle your curiosity with all these fun highlights? Ireland is ripe with them! There are so many areas to discover and scenic drives to experience. For a round trip around the country, we recommend at least 6 to 8 days to make the most of your time here.
Here’s an example of a one-week Ireland road trip itinerary, including the Ring of Kerry:
Day 1 – Arrive in Dublin.
Day 2 – Pick up your rental car and drive to the west coast. Spend the night in Galway.
Day 3 – Explore Connemara or the Aran Islands. Overnight in Galway.
Day 4 – See the Cliffs of Moher. Overnight in Killarney.
Day 5 – Take the whole day to discover the Ring of Kerry. Overnight in Killarney.
Day 6 – Visit historic sites and drop off your rental car. Spend your last night in Dublin.
Day 7 – Depart from Dublin Airport.
The best part? You won’t have to worry about where you’re going or sleeping. Your Nordic Visitor travel consultant will reserve your accommodation, rent a car, and book activities to fill your days with adventures.
We cater to all tastes, whether you want to visit a whiskey distillery, go hiking in the national parks, or sail to the windswept Skellig Islands.
Not only that, but with our Ireland holiday packages you get many benefits that we know you will love.
All our tours start with a private transfer from Dublin Airport to your accommodation upon your arrival for ease and convenience. You’ll receive a detailed itinerary and personalised map of Ireland with your route, accommodations and highlights. We also throw in a Heritage Island touring guide and discount pass.
And did you know we create our own travel guides? You’ll receive the Nordic Visitor Ireland Travel Guide with all the highlights, tips for shopping, packing and more. We want to make sure you enjoy your tour of the Emerald Isle as much as possible!
You can also rest assured that we’re with you every step of the way. Call us on our 24/7 emergency helpline should you need support at any point.
Want to stay for a longer period of time?
If you want to slow down the pace and take in more Irish attractions, we highly recommend extending your Ireland holiday to at least 10 days.
With our flexible itineraries, it’s easy to start planning your tour now. Pick the amount of time you want to stay in Dublin. And then you can choose how far and how long you want to spend driving around the island.
The possibilities are endless when you visit Ireland. With 10 days or longer, you could explore the capital and countryside in more depth.
Follow the Wild Atlantic Way route to admire the sea cliffs, feel the Atlantic wind in your hair, and taste delicious seafood. Visit historic sights such as the Victorian Kylemore Abbey, tour the Dingle Peninsula, or spend some time in Cork, Ireland’s second largest city.
If you prefer to spend more time in one city than another or want to add another town to your trip, it’s no problem. Just ask your Nordic Visitor travel consultant for advice.
Interested in visiting Northern Ireland?
As you may already know, the island of Ireland is separated in 2 entities. The Republic of Ireland, which is an independent nation, and Northern Ireland, which is part of the United Kingdom (along with England, Scotland and Wales).
While they are two different countries, they share many similarities in their history, culture and, of course, their geography. For a complete tour of the island, we recommend including Northern Ireland in your itinerary. This way you could get to know the Emerald Isle and see all its beauty in depth.
In Northern Ireland, you won’t want to miss the capital Belfast, the Antrim Coast, and the Giant’s Causeway.
When is the best time to visit Ireland?
Ireland is a beautiful country all year long. This means you can’t go wrong when you book your Irish getaway. That said, we recommend the summertime or its shoulder months for the best experience.
The summer, consisting of the months of June, July and August, is the high season. It is marked by long daylight hours and the best (and most stable) weather of the year. Attractions also operate under longer hours and more availability than in winter.
All of this means you can discover Ireland to your heart’s content.
However, you may find that top attractions are very popular at this time. Indeed, Ireland attracts visitors from around the world especially in summer.
If you would rather have a quieter holiday, visit during the spring or autumn. These shoulder months include April, May, September and October. During this time, you’ll find the best of both worlds: quieter attractions but plenty of good weather and daylight to explore.
Are you interested in exploring Scotland too?
Combine a tour of Ireland with a road trip around Scotland for an epic Celtic itinerary. We recommend a minimum of 10 days for this, so you can have enough time to have a taste of both countries.
Spend the first 4 to 10 days driving around the rugged Highlands and islands of Scotland. Then follow that up with another road trip around Ireland to take in all the jaw-dropping coastal landscapes and historic landmarks.
The bonus? All these tours include the Ring of Kerry!
Scotland is a great destination to complement a tour to Ireland. Their cultures and history are so closely linked and you’ll be able to meet the locals and get immersed in both.
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