Arrival – Cycle or Walk from Cahernane to Muckross Abbey & House
Check in to Cahernane. Have a light snack and welcome drink in The Cellar before taking our complimentary bikes out to explore the Killarney National Park. At the top of the hotels driveway, take the cycle path to the right.
After 1km, the cycle path leads into the woods. Keep the Lower Lake on your right and after another 1km, you will see Muckross Abbey on your left. Stop here and explore the Abbey, especially the Yew Tree in the center of the Abbey. Legend has it that anyone who damages the tree will die within a year. The tree is approximately 400 years old.
Continue cycling up the hill and after another 2 kms, you will see Muckross House ahead.
To loop around, cycle past the main car park and back to Muckross Abbey before returning back to Cahernane.
Total distance is 9km of a relatively easy cycle. For something a little more strenuous (17km), follow the signs for Dinis Cottage, this loop takes you around the Muckross Lake. Stop at Dinis for refreshments (shop is open in high season until 5pm)
Once you are settled back in Cahernane, enjoy a rest with a coffee or drink in the Library or Atrium before your gourmet dinner in the Herbert Restaurant.
Ring of Kerry – Valentia Island – Sneem - Kenmare
The Ring of Kerry is a 173km (112 miles) looped drive taking in the most breathtaking scenery Ireland has to offer. We advise that you only drive anti-clockwise around the Ring, as during the summer this minimises traffic problems with tour buses on the narrower sections of road.
After a filling breakfast at Cahernane head west from Killarney to Killorglin. On the way, you will see the Gap of Dunloe on your left once you pass Fossa Village.
From Killorgin, head to Glenbeigh. Just passed the main village, turn off the main road to the right and go to Rossbeigh Beach, well worth a short stroll to freshen up !
Rossbeigh to Caherciveen will unveil some magnificent scenery, you can see over to the Dingle Peninsula from here.
A stop at Kells Bay Gardens is a must, it contains a renowned collection of tree-ferns and other exotic plants growing in its unique microclimate created by the Gulf Stream. It is the home of ‘The SkyWalk’ Ireland’s longest rope-bridge.
After Caherciveen, we recommend you take the car ferry across a small distance of water to Valentia Island, cost is €8 one way for the 10 minute journey. Leave the island via the road at the south of the island which takes you to Portmagee on the mainland.
Perhaps it is now time for a bite of lunch at The Moorings in Portmagee, a highly recommended stop.
Onwards then to Waterville, a unique village situated right on the coast. You will see a statue of Charlie Chaplin in the centre of the village, he came to Waterville first in 1959 and returned for a holiday every year for the next 10 years.
After Waterville, you begin a climb up to Coomakista Pass, make sure to stop at the top viewing point to admire the scenery – you can see breathtaking views of Kenmare Bay and the Beara peninsula on the south side of the bay.
Castlecove is the next town where you should take time to visit Staigue Fort. Staigue fort is an important monument from the Celtic era. It is one of the largest and finest ring forts in Ireland and is approximately 2000 years old.
Continue on to Sneem, an award winning village, where former French President Charles de Gaulle holidayed on numerous occasions and there is a sculpture commemorating this in the center of the village.
Kenmare town is the last stop before returning to Cahernane, browse the two main streets or wander down to Kenmare Bay if you have a fine evening.
Return to Cahernane where you can tell us all about your adventures !
Local Highlights – Ross Castle (take in a boat trip to Innisfallen Island) – Torc Waterfall
Our first suggestion after breakfast is to drive to Ross Castle (you can walk, its 4kms). From there, you can walk to the Copper Mines (3km loop walk to Govenors Rock). Killarney had a thriving copper mining business in the 19th century.
If it’s a rainy day, a tour of inside Ross Castle is a great way to spend a couple of hours.
Alternatively, take a small motor boat from Ross Castle over to Innisfallen Island (approx. €10 per person). You can also hire row boats from Ross Castle but if the wind is strong, it can be a tough pull out across the lake ! Our recommendation is to take the motor boat. A monastery was established on Innisfallen in the 7th century but the ruins you see on the island now are from a more recent 12th century Augustinian priory.
The boatman can leave you for 20 minutes or for an hour as you prefer. Have your Cahernane picnic here. Please note there are no services (toilets, coffee shop) on the island so you must bring everything you need with you.
In the afternoon, a visit to the resplendent Torc Waterfall is a must. To drive here is a 7km drive from Cahernane. Turn right at the top of our driveway and continue past Muckross House and Gardens. You will see a car park on your left hand side of the road.
Once you park at the Torc Waterfall car park, the waterfall is a short 200m walk from here. If you are feeling energetic, you can continue walking up the steps past the waterfall and do a loop back around to the car park (approx. 30 minutes walk).
After all this fresh air, why not return to Cahernane to have afternoon tea in the Drawing Room, overlooking the beautiful views of Tomies and Glena mountains.
In the evening, relax on the swing in Cahernane gardens overlooking Glena & Tomies mountains.
Depart Cahernane after a short walk in Knockreer & visiting Aghadoe Viewing Point
We hope you have enjoyed all that Killarney and Co. Kerry has to offer.
After breakfast this morning, we recommend that you drive to St Mary’s Cathedral and park in the adjacent car park. If you have time, make a visit to the Cathedral. Then cross the road and enter the National Park at Knockreer. There are several paths at this end of the park, a favourite is the River Walk, approx. 30 minutes long.
There is a spectacular viewing point at Aghadoe. From the town center, take the N22 towards Tralee. Take the first left and follow the signs for Aghadoe. You will see the Lower Lake, Bricin Bridge, Ross Castle and on a clear day, the tip of Carrauntoohil peeps out.