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How to Spend 3 Days in Killarney

How to Spend 3 Days in Killarney

Killarney is the ideal base for exploring County Kerry, a rugged, rural, and beautiful corner of southwest Ireland. See below for a 3-day itinerary that incorporates visits to three of the county’s scenic highlights: the Dingle Peninsula, the Ring of Kerry, and the sprawling and lake-scattered Killarney National Park.

Day 1: Explore Killarney National Park

On your first day, turn your attention to Killarney National Park, a 24,700-acre (10,000-hectare) expanse encompassing island-dotted lakes, ancient forests, and historical heritage properties. Join a guided highlights tour of key sights such as Ladies’ View lookout, the 19th-century Muckross House mansion, and the 15th-century Ross Castle. For a little more flexibility, use a hop-on hop-off park bus service to plan your own sightseeing itinerary, incorporating shorter guided excursions, such as jaunting car (pony and trap) rides, walking tours, lake cruises, or guided paddles in Lough Leane. 

As the day draws to an end, return to town and head for High Street, where you’ll find a concentrated cluster of restaurants. Menus tend to make use of local produce, with Kerry lamb and beef, and Skellig Coast seafood, commonplace.

Day 2: Drive the Ring of Kerry

This 110-mile (178-kilometer) loop drive hugs the coast of the Iveragh Peninsula, west of Killarney. You could drive yourself around the winding, 2-lane circuit, but if you want to tear your eyes away from the road and give in to the attention-grabbing scenery out the window, opt for a guided coach tour instead. Bike tours are an option too.

Alternatively, choose a private tour that allows you to dictate where and when you want to stop, and how active or gentle your experience should be—think an adrenaline-charged coasteering adventure or a quiet stroll along a white-sand beach. Either way, don’t miss Derrynane Beach, Valentia Island, and the UNESCO World Heritage–listed Skellig Michael.

If possible, linger until late. Dine in Caherdaniel, Cahersiveen, or Portmagee as darkness falls, then turn your head up to the star-filled night sky. Much of the region is a designated International Dark Sky Reserve, and on a clear night the stargazing opportunities are unrivaled in Ireland.  

Day 3: Discover the Dingle Peninsula

Though smaller in size than the Iveragh Peninsula, the Dingle Peninsula is no less spectacular and warrants a full day’s exploration. Embark on a coach tour from Killarney and cruise along the craggy Atlantic coast, pausing at scenic locales such as the edge-of-the-world Slea Head promontory and the village of Dingle, a small yet cosmopolitan town packed with colorful storefronts and characterful pubs. Private guided tours of the peninsula offer customizable itineraries, meaning you call the shots. 

For a different perspective on County Kerry, take a food and drink–themed day tour from Killarney to Dingle, visiting artisan producers such as the Dingle Whiskey Distillery and the Killarney Brewing Company along the way. Back in Killarney, pull up a stool at one of the city’s many traditional pubs, where you can dine, drink, and—depending on the night—listen to live trad music being performed.

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7 Tours and Activities | All Killarney Tours

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Private Tour:Ring of Kerry,Skellig Ring,Kerry Cliffs and Valentia from Killarney

Private Tour:Ring of Kerry,Skellig Ring,Kerry Cliffs and Valentia from Killarney

star-5
Customize your own itinerary and discover southwest Ireland’s breathtaking natural beauty on this private Ring of Kerry tour from Kilkenny. Follow your private guide along hiking routes around the Iveragh Peninsula. Visit pretty towns and villages including Cahersiveen and Kenmare, and discover top local attractions such as the Torc Waterfall. Enjoy panoramic cliff views along the Skellig Ring and hike to top spots like Valentia Island and Cahergall Fort. During your private tour, feel free to stop where and when you like!
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  • 6 to 8 hours
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$80.19
From
$80.19
Taking safety measures

Jaunting Car Tour to Ross Castle from Killarney

Jaunting Car Tour to Ross Castle from Killarney

star-4.5
Do as the tourists of bygone years did, and explore Killarney by horse and carriage. The equivalent to a modern taxi, the jaunting car was popular in Ireland through the 19th and early 20th centuries. On this tour, you’ll learn about the area’s history, hearing tales of the Gaelic chieftains as you ride around Killarney National Park. Ross Castle, St. Mary's Cathedral, and Killarney House Gadens are a few of the landmarks on the route.
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  • 1 hour
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$37.96
Price varies by group size
From
$37.96
Price varies by group size
Taking safety measures

Full-Day Tour of the Dingle Peninsula, Slea Head, and Inch Beach

Full-Day Tour of the Dingle Peninsula, Slea Head, and Inch Beach

star-4.5
Experience the rugged beauty of Ireland’s southeast coastline on a coach tour of the Dingle Peninsula and Slea Head. From Killarney, travel through scenic mountain regions and along Ireland’s rocky beaches. Spot ancient huts and historic buildings such as the Gallarus Oratory, visit Dingle Town, and get a splendid view of Slea Head—the most westerly point in Europe.
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  • 6 hours 30 minutes
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$80.19
From
$80.19
Taking safety measures

Guided Killarney National Park Walking Tour

Guided Killarney National Park Walking Tour

star-5
Beat the crowds and enjoy nature’s tranquility on this private tour of Killarney National Park. The first national park in Ireland, Killarney is famed for its wildly scenic landscapes, its herd of red deer, and its medieval castle; it has also served as a film set and host to famous visitors like Charles de Gaulle. Pick a start time and duration that work for your schedule, and explore at your own pace.
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  • 2 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$12.34
From
$12.34

Full-Day Ring of Kerry Tour from Killarney

Full-Day Ring of Kerry Tour from Killarney

star-4
The Ring of Kerry is one of Ireland’s most popular sightseeing routes, but with so many tours to choose from it can be hard to know which is best. This full-day Ring of Kerry coach tour is run by one of the longest-running and award-winning operators, so you can be sure to check off all the highlights, including the Killarney National Park, Dingle Bay, Molls Gap, and Sneem.
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  • 7 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$31.64
From
$31.64

Hop On/Off Shuttle Visit National Park,Torc Waterfall,Muckross House,Ladies View

Hop On/Off Shuttle Visit National Park,Torc Waterfall,Muckross House,Ladies View

star-4.5
The countryside outside Killarney boasts come of Ireland’s most captivating landmarks and beautiful scenery, but reaching the far-flung destinations independently can be challenging. With this hop-on hop-off ticket, reach diverse sites of interest such as Muckross Abbey, Ross Castle, and Torc Waterfall with ease by air-conditioned coach. Along the way, admire uninterrupted views over the famous lakes of Killarney and enjoy the freedom to explore at your leisure.
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  • 3 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$12.66
From
$12.66

Lakes of Killarney Cruise

Lakes of Killarney Cruise

star-4.5
The Killarney National Park is one of the highlights of the Ring of Kerry, but you don’t have to put on your hiking boots to enjoy its stunning scenery. This Lakes of Killarney cruise is the perfect introduction, offering spectacular views of Ross Castle, Innisfallen Island, Tomies Wood, and the wildlife of the Killarney Valley.
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  • 1 hour
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$15.19
From
$15.19
Taking safety measures