The Ring of Kerry & West Cork - 8 Day Hike - Self Guide
So many know & have heard of the Ring of Kerry with it’s wonderful scenery & magnificent beauty. This holiday introduces you to that stunning landscape & also brings you to some parts of this south west corner of Ireland that we believe are just as impressive, if not more so, than the Ring of Kerry. If you enjoy coastal scenery – then this is the holiday for you.
The Wild Atlantic Ocean has formed Ireland into the land as we know it today, ravaged by its storms & pounding waves, or on calm days enjoying the therapeutic lapping of its warm waters along our coastal shores and glorious sandy beaches. One of the best places to see how this Ocean has transformed this land into a myriad of inlets, with amazing rock formations, hidden coves & ancient harbours is the beautiful South West region of Ireland. On this holiday, we take you to the more peaceful and unchanged corners of southwest Ireland offering a variety of terrain, all with beautiful views.
The Ring of Kerry is probably Ireland’s most famous attraction as it boasts one of the most panoramic roads in the world with 170kms of jaw-dropping beauty. In truth, it is the Iveragh Peninsula the largest of the five peninsulas that “jut” out into the Wild Atlantic Ocean in the most south westerly corner of Ireland. This unique landscape is captivating, and the heritage town of <em “=””>Kenmare offers a stunning start to your holiday. You will also be rewarded with wonderful beaches, some of the most idyllic views across the Atlantic and an unbelievable coast line.
South from Kenmare lies the Beara & Sheeps Head Peninsulas in the glorious region of West Cork. These peninsulas are a haven of tranquillity, far away from ‘coach-tour’ country and therefore have long been popular with the more discerning traveller. A place apart for walkers & hikers alike. The breathtaking panoramas are dominated by mountains and sea with Bantry Bay diving them from one another.
At the eastern end of Bantry Bay is the village of Glengarriff, from where you can take a short boat trip to Garinish Island, famous for its Italianate Gardens with their sub-tropical flora. At the western tip of the peninsula is Dursey Island, now home to only five souls, and connected to the mainland by Ireland’s only cable car – capacity: 6 people or 1 cow!
This untouched & undiscovered part of Ireland is rich in history, pre-history, folklore and archaeology. Copper and other metals have been mined around this region since the Bronze Ages. The earliest inhabitants made their mark, leaving numerous tombs, standing stones and stone circles dotted across the landscape. The region is rich in mythology: it was the home of the Hag of Beara, a powerful sovereignty goddess whose reputation extends across the whole country.
This stunning South West region of Ireland is an ancient, magical region where the power of the past is ever-present and the present just blooms with welcome for you the visitor.
Comfortable: Terrain varied & occasionally wet underfoot. Best suited to people capable of walking up to 12kms (7.5 miles) daily. You encounter uphill & downhill sections with a max. height of 600 metres (1,950 feet) approx. Ideal first walking holiday or less experienced walkers.
Moderate: Takes you across open-mountain & bogland (wet conditions). Terrain is varied each day with uphill & downhill hiking, some of which may be steep. Max. height is 950 metres (3,100 feet) approx. Suitable for people with good level of fitness & capable of walking up to 20kms (12.5 miles) a day.