Killarney is one of the most popular towns in Ireland – especially for lovers of the outdoors. From the stunning Killarney National Park to the challenge of MacGillycuddy’s Reeks, and the mesmerising shores of Lough Leane, Killarney is a true jewel in the crown of the Kingdom.
If you’re looking to experience a true taste of Ireland, head to Killarney and experience one (or more!) of our top 5 amazing outdoor adventures!
5. Kayak Trip along the Lakes of Killarney
Want to explore the beauty of Killarney, but not a massive fan of hikes or cycling? Look no further than a Kayak Trip along the luscious lakes that border the town. Mór Active Tours offer two-hour long guided tours three times a day from Ross House, a beautiful 15th Century tower house.
The Kayak tours are gentle and suitable for both children and adults, so are perfect for families and inexperienced kayakers.
On the tour, participants will see the beauty of the water up close and personal, spy some indigenous flora and fauna, and learn the exciting history of Ross House itself. Spaces are €35 per person and will add something special to your Killarney trip.
Start Point: Ross Castle Car Park, Ross Road, Killarney, Co. Kerry
4. Trail Ride on Horseback
Treks through the National Park and the Ring of Kerry are available from the very professional Killarney Riding Stables. Experiencing the mountains on horseback is mesmerising, peaceful, and not a moment you will forget in a hurry.
The staff are wonderful and make even the most nervous of riders feel at ease, catering each trek to the needs of the group.
The stables are open all year round and are the perfect spot for visitors from all over the world – instructors speak English, French, German, Spanish, and Swedish. Daily treks last between one and three hours and start from just €45.
Address: Killarney Riding Stables, Ballydowney, Killarney, Co. Kerry
3. Killarney National Park by Bike
Killarney National Park is a taste of heaven on earth, an intricate tangle of walkways and hiking trails. The very best way to experience the park is by bike – it allows you to take in as much of the sprawling grounds as possible, such as the mighty Torc Waterfall and the ornate Muckross House.
Tackling the park by bike means you can make a day trip of it – pack a picnic or visit Deenaghs Lodge for a mug of tea and cake. You can also park your bike at any stage and embark on one of the many hikes in the park.
If you’re feeling brave challenge yourself to Torc Mountain – fondly known as Cardiac Hill, this 2.5-hour trek will leave you breathless, but the views are worth it.
Bikes are available for hire at many spots in the town and come with maps, helmets, and locks.
2. The Gap of Dunloe
The Gap of Dunloe is a sight to behold. A narrow mountain pass forged by glacial flows between the MacGillycuddy Reeks and the Purple Mountain, the Gap is a fine example of nature at its most beautiful. The pass is approximately 11km long and can be experienced by foot. Bike, or horse-drawn wagon.
Hiking the Gap is perhaps the best way to experience it. The hike can be done in approximately three hours, is quite accessible to those of different skill levels, and rewards you with stunning views of woodland, valleys, and Lakelands.
The Gap of Dunloe can be tackled without a guide, but if you would rather experience its beauty with a group then Killarney Day Tour offers packages to suit everyone.
1. Carrauntoohil Mountain
If you’re on the hunt for an outdoor adventure that will truly challenge you, then look no further than this towering peak.
Proudly claiming the title of Ireland’s highest mountain, this beast stands at a whopping 1038 metres high. It goes without saying that this outdoor adventure is not for the faint-hearted, and that good levels of health, fitness, and experience are all absolutely essential.
Unless you are very experienced a guided tour is the best way to go – check out Mór Active Tours who offer a tour every Saturday.
The hike is packed full of spectacular views, ample photo opportunities, and a chance to learn about local legends from your experienced and enthusiastic guide. Be it for the landscape or the pride of conquering our highest mountain, Carrauntoohil is an outdoor adventure not to be missed.
Start Point: Cronin’s Yard, Mealis, Beaufort, Killarney, Co. Kerry
As you can see, Killarney truly is a magical part of our beautiful Emerald Isle. So lace up the boots, grab your paddle, or saddle up – Killarney is waiting for you in all its splendour.