Travel Guide | Ring of Kerry - B Loved Boston

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Travel Guide | Ring of Kerry

After leaving Dublin we started to make our way towards Killarney which would be our "home base" for the next few days. There was a lot we packed into those two and a half days and I've included two points of interest that are not part of the Ring of Kerry. 
Where to go in Ireland, Ireland Road Trip, Weekend trip from Dublin, Stops to make on the Ring of Kerry, Ring of Kerry

Stay & Eat || 

Where to stay in Killarney, Places to eat in Killarney
Where to stay in Killarney, Places to eat in Killarney
Where to stay in Killarney, Places to eat in Killarney
Where to stay in Killarney, Places to eat in Killarney
The town center of Killarney offers a variety of accommodations - from smaller B&B's to really nice resorts. Our friends raved about Muckross Hotel & Spa - so that's where we decided to stay. It's situated right near the national park and is actually one of the best starting points for the Ring of Kerry. The service that we experienced at the hotel was incredible - everyone was super friendly and accommodating! They were so kind to have a little dessert waiting for us when we arrived in our room as well - when in doubt, always let them know if you're celebrating something special! 
Where to stay in Killarney, Places to eat in Killarney
We booked our room with breakfast included and it was delicious! You could order from the menu which had loads of options and you could also enjoy the buffet! Highly suggest adding the breakfast option so that you don't have to seek food out on your own. 
Where to stay in Killarney, Places to eat in Killarney
We felt a little duped by the staff in the sense that they made it seem like the only places to eat in Killarney were at the hotel and since we had arrived starving we took their word on it. Of the three restaurants we ate at in the hotel, I enjoyed Monks Lounge the most - the food was delicious and it was a more laid back atmosphere. You have to make reservations at the Yew Tree Restaurant which is an award winning restaurant in the town. While the service was outstanding - the actual food selection was a little lack luster for my taste and also there wasn't much of it. Perhaps they say that you should dine at the hotel because when you're sight seeing all day - the last thing you want to do is leave to go somewhere else to eat! 

Rock of Cashel ||

Where to go in Ireland, Ireland Road Trip, Weekend trip from Dublin
Where to go in Ireland, Ireland Road Trip, Weekend trip from Dublin
Where to go in Ireland, Ireland Road Trip, Weekend trip from Dublin
On they way to Killarney we decided to stop and see the Rock of Cashel in the Town of Tippery. It's a two hour drive from Dublin and a nice little stop if you aren't in a hurry anywhere. The ruins date back to the 12th and 13th century and is situated atop a small hillside. There is a tour you can take, but we decided that 45 minutes at the "rock" would be too long. We meandered around the grounds on our own & then had a really enjoyable lunch in the town center. If you're staying either in Kilkenny or Killarney, this would be a great little pit stop! 

Blarney Castle ||

Where to go in Ireland, Ireland Road Trip, Trips to take around Ireland, Blarney Stone
One of the days that we wanted to take it easy, we decided to visit The Blarney Castle in the morning. It's a little over an hour away from Killarney & you drive through some really cute towns and sites on the way there. I imagine when everything is in bloom and it's a beautiful day - the grounds are really spectacular - unfortunately for us it was a little gloomy out that day and cold. It's most definitely a tourist destination, but for us we couldn't go to Ireland and not visit the castle and stone. Getting to the actual stone is a little hairy, meaning there is one spiral staircase on the way up and it's very narrow and tight. 
The "gift of the gab" is what comes along once you kiss the stone and while I didn't kiss it myself (too many germs) Gary had no problem being the tourist for us both! I think this is more of a bucket list item rather than something that I had to see, but I'm still really happy we checked this one off the list. We had heard that locals come and do some not so nice things to the stone for unsuspecting tourists - well after seeing the security around the stone and castle itself it would be impossible for anyone to get there after hours! 

Ring of Kerry ||

If you're up for an adventure then you absolutely must do the Ring of Kerry. There was never a doubt that this was going to be one of the highlights of our trip. Thankfully the concierge at our hotel gave us a few inside tips about where to stop and what not to miss while on the drive, but even if he hadn't - using this guide book we would have figured it out. There are loads of tours that are offered if you aren't up for driving on your own, but we really wanted to do this by ourselves! It took us about 8 hours total to complete the drive and come back to our hotel, which as I mentioned before is one of the best starting points for the ring since you end at one of the stops. Here are some of the not to miss stops along the drive.
Glenbeigh / Rossbeigh Beach || Where the mountains meet the water. Great spot to take in so much beauty! 
Portmagee || Perfect spot for a lunch break - we ate at Morrings Restaurant, split the fish and chips & it was really tasty! If you're a Star Wars fan, the cast ate here during the filming of one of the most recent movies! Also, you can take a ferry tour of the Skelling Island if time permits!
Kerry Cliffs || Much smaller scale of the Cliffs of Moher, but equally as beautiful. 
Caherdaniel / Coomatloukane || Great spot to take in the scenery - again a lot of coastline! The day we went, there was an ice cream truck that made for the most perfect treat! 
Staigue Fort || If we were to do this again, I would vote we skip this since it's just a stone fort, but apparently it's a not to miss attraction. We spent about 15 minutes off the actual path getting to it and a total of 5 minutes at the fort. Totally a game time decision for you as you're making the drive. 
Kenmare Town || A pit stop for us, but depending on where you are in the drive you could stop for dinner here. It's a cute little town with lots of shops & food options. 
Muckross House & Gardens || Beautiful property in the national park. They offer tours of the home, but if that's not your thing, you can get a carriage ride around the park and see the lakes. 
Torc Waterfall || This was our final stop and about 3 minutes from our hotel. We were both pretty tired from the day, but it was nice to end the journey on such a relaxing note! 
These were just the stops that we made, but others would say that there are not to miss beaches and castles. It all depends on what you're after! Regardless you'll see the beautiful countryside, so much of the coast and breathtaking views! 
The drive is not for the faint of heart - there are plenty of one lane roads that have you staring down the edge of a cliff. If you've ever driven the Road to Hana it' the only thing I can compare it to, the Pacific Coast Highway wasn't nearly as scary!
There was a lot to see and do during this part of our trip & hopefully this was informative if you're planning a trip to Ireland!! 

39 comments

  1. Wow, you guys did so much! And so many pretty pictures! I'm glad Gary could play tourist for the both of you -- my husband would be the same way! I would say too many germs, too! Great recap, Biana! Hoping that we get to Ireland one day!

    xo, Rachel
    A Blonde's Moment

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  2. It looks so pretty there! I love the photos, they look amazing.
    http://sugarcoatedbears.blogspot.com/

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  3. What an incredible hotel, that’s awesome they had a sweet little Anniversary touch. You have me more excited about Ireland than ever now!

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  4. All of the castles seem so cool!! We definitely want to go!

    Katherine | www.oneswainkycouple.com

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  5. Ireland seems so gorgeous! And a drive seems like the perfect way to get in lots of sites!

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  6. Another great travel guide thank you so much for sharing. The pictures are stunning and it looks like you guys had a fabulous time.
    xo, Whitney and Blaire
    Peaches In A Pod

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  7. Sooooo beautiful! Did you use your iphone to take all these lovely pics?

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  8. Haha you sound like me at Blarney Castle, I'd abstain for the same reason! Love that it's a beautiful drive to get there, and hotels that include breakfast - yes please <3
    Green Fashionista

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  9. Ever picture you took was more gorgeous than the last! I can’t believe how many gorgeous stops there are and even on a gloomy day it was beautiful!

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  10. The Ring of Kerry is stunning!! And I’m with you on the Blarney Stone, no thank you. I mean, I hope they clean that thing lol! But props to G for taking one for the team!!

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  11. Beautiful pictures!!! I definitely want to visit Ireland one day and have wanted to since the movie PS I Love You came out haha!!!
    Sarah at MeetTheShaneyfelts

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  12. Ireland is so beautiful! Great travel guide and stunning photography!
    Magda

    https://www.gloryofthesnow.com/

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  13. I wouldn't be able to kiss that stone either, haha! I would be thinking about all the cold sores I could get from it! I'm loving these recaps or your trip and would love to see the sights of the Ring of Kerry!

    Brooke
    Pumps and Push-Ups

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  14. You guys saw so much, I love it! And those cliffside lunch views- wow!

    -Ashley
    Le Stylo Rouge

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  15. The Kerry Cliffs and the Blarney castle--all so gorgeous! Definitely everything I picture when thinking of an Ireland trip! Seriously loving your travel posts!

    Rosy Outlook

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  16. I remember going to all of those places with my parents when I was in high school haha. :-) Your photos are gorgeous too!! :-)

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  17. It looks breathtaking there...that waterfall! Looks like you guys had such a good time.

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  18. Similar to the road to Hana?! Enough said-- I'll let Mike do the driving if we ever do this!!! Beautiful pics! But there's something about that fish and chips that literally has me salivating!!!! XOXO, R

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  19. This is all stunning! Now I'm ready to go to Ireland immediately. I love living vicariously through your travels!

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  20. Thanks for sharing your experience with us. So many beautiful spots!

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  21. WOW, what an awesome trip! Such gorgeous photos, the resort looked fabulous too!

    xx, Elise
    www.sparkleandslippers.blogspot.com

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  22. So much beauty! What an absolute dream of a trip!

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  23. So many gorgeous photos and sights! You guys sure packed a lot in, but it looks like it was totally worth it!

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  24. Kenmare Town looks so fun. It sounds like the fort might have been a little disappointing haha. All of your pictures are so beautiful!!!

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  25. Absolutely stunning photos! My grandparents did this trip when I was little and I still can't believe my prim and proper grandmother kissed the blarney stone, lol! I have this on my list and am pinning this guide for the day I get to do it!

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  26. Your hotel looks so pretty and so does this part of Ireland! What a great time exploring! Sierra~Beautifully Candid

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  27. The Ring of Kerry is my favorite part so far! The Muckross looked super comfy and I always love when hotels send something extra for an occasion!

    Amanda @ Cupcake N Dreams

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  28. I can't believe how much y'all got in!! It looks stunning over there!

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  29. These pictures don't even look real! Gorgeous!

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  30. oh those old castles! and the ring of kerry - all on my list. what great recommendations girly!

    xoxo cheshire kat

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  31. You scenery pics are just amazing! Love that he kissed the wall for both of you. ;)

    Amy Ann
    Straight A Style

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  32. This pictures are amazing!!

    xx
    Mónica Sors
    MES VOYAGES À PARIS
    NEW POST: CASUAL SPRING IN LA

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  33. Ireland is definitely on my bucket list! It looks sooooo beautiful!

    <3 Shannon 
    Upbeat Soles

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  34. The hotel you stayed at looks gorgeous! What an adventure exploring the coast and visiting those castles/waterfalls/delish restaurants. Trip of a lifetime! Emily @ Martinis & Bikinis

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  35. That hotel looks fabulous. We definitely skipped the Cashel tour, too. It's gorgeous though. My husband even made us go back in the late afternoon... after visiting that morning, lol.

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