Best Walks Killarney and Ring of Kerry
Walks Killarney and Ring of Kerry Loop Walks.
Kerry is well known for its spectacular scenery of dramatic mountains, seascapes and lakes. One of the best ways to get the most out of it is on foot and it offers great walking routes for all ability levels. These range from short loops ideal for all the family and for people with limited mobility to more challenging routes which will test the more experienced hiker. Whichever you choose you’ll be able to appreciate the beauty of Kerry and its magnificent scenery.
- Dingle Loop Walks & North Kerry Walks
- Kerry Hikes and Long Walks
1. Killarney National Park
Difficulty – Easy – Level 2
There are many walking routes in Killarney National Park from an easy town walk to a taxing Old Kenmare Road route from Killarney to Kenmare uphill through the forest along with railway sleepers in areas which can be muddy. Take a walk in the park passing the Cathedral or a guided walk with a local guide for 2 hours to hear the story and history of the park. The Muckross and Dinis Loop Route is an easy 10km walk of 2 hours plus taking you through the Muckross demesne. passing Muckross Abbey, Muckross House. and garden, Brickeen Bridge, Dinis Cottage and ending at Torc Waterfall. Take a bus or jaunting car back to Killarney town.
2. Muckross Lake Loop Walk, Killarney.
Difficulty – Medium – Level 3
Muckross Lake loop is a 15km walk starting at Muckross house, climbing
up a long stone staircase, but is suitable for all ages. Starting and
finishing at Muckross House, the walk involves a minimal amount of climbing and includes visits to the beautiful formal gardens and historic buildings. of the Muckross Demesne. Suited to all the family with walking trails, cycling trails through the park and horse riding routes in the park.
3. Cronin’s Yard Loop
Distance – depends on the route. Difficulty- Level 3
Cronins Yard, Beauford, Killarney is off the Beauford /Killorglin N72 road. Take the left for Gap of Dunloe after Fossa village for about 8km. After Kissane’s shop, over a little stone bridge take the left for Cronins Yard and Tearoom, about 3 km in the valley. It is used as the base for walks to Carranuathaill and other walks in the area.
It is used as the base for walks to Carranuathaill and other walks in the area. The Cronin’s Yard Loop will take you across sandy paths and up mountain tracks Starting from the trailhead at the exit from Cronin’s Yard, just follow the purple arrows. The route follows the Caol River, the Gaddach River and Lough Callee.
To climb Carrauntuathill in safety you will need a guide, who take small groups along the mountain trail – do not attempt to climb un-aided as
4. Tomies Wood Walk, Killarney.
Difficulty – Level 2 – Easy Walk
Toomies Wood is on the western side of Lough Leine Killarney. Take the N72 from Killarney towards Killorglin. Turn left at Hotel Europe for Gap Dunloe. Tomies Wood walk is a great 6km walk/hike, with a great view from the top of the Killarney Lakes. The route takes you along O’Sullivan’s cascade. No dogs allowed by the landowner, and make sure to close gates, Hidden gem of a walk close to Killarney. Not suited to boggy or wheelchair users.
5. Pike Wood, Killarney.
Distance 2.5km Loop walk – Easy – 45 minutes – Family Friendly.
Pike Wood on the R876 off the Ring road on the N22 from the Cork road and near Hotel Killarney on the outskirts of the town on a forest trail along the Flesk river. Take a right through this atmosphere wood on a warm day and enjoy the calmness and serenity that it has to offer. Suited to walk with family and dog but not buggy or wheelchair friendly.
6. Torc Waterfall, Killarney.
Duration – 1 hour loop walk – Medium difficulty- level 3 walk
Torc Waterfall is on the N71 about 5 minutes drive beyond the entrance to Muckross House. A car park on left side of the road also has a bus service to Killarney if you wish to walk all the way from Ross Castle along the edge of the lake. To see the waterfall is up steps along the side of the Owengarriff river. Past the viewing point at the waterfall are more steps to the tip of the hill, which is clearly waymarked. Great view from the top. Due to the steps, all the way to the top of the hill this route is not suited to buggies or wheelchair users. A private walking guide from Killarney town can be organised for this walk.
7. Rossacroo Loop Walks, Killarney.
Duration 1- 1.25 hours loop walk – Distance 1.5km. Family-friendly and picnic area.
Rossacroo Wood is on the N569 from Killarney to Kilgarvan, 10km north of the village. Rossacroo na Loo, to give it its full title, straddles the Loo river and valley. The wooded valley slopes are managed by Coillte and come right down to the river from both sides. There are two short enjoyable. waymarked walks at Rossacroo, the shorter walk (1km, 20 mins) and a longer Millennium walk (1.5km) that take you into the forest of Oak and Scots Pine trees. There’s a picnic area in the car park opposite the entrance to the forest. Not suited to buggy or wheelchairs. Keep dogs on a lead as you may see Red or Sika deer or squirrels. There is 15km of forest trails in total for those who want longer walks.
Ring of Kerry Walks
8. Lickeen Wood Walks, Iveragh Peninsula, Kerry.
Distance 2- 3 km loop walks Difficulty- Medium – Level 3 – Family Friendly
Lickeen Woods situated on the Iveragh Peninsula is 30 minutes from Killarney on the N 7o, 18 km from Killarvin and 13km from Glenbeigh. Turn off on the Road and Moyfadda on R along a beautiful drive beside Lough Caragh. There are three loops in the area that would be for young families, with picnic areas and parking. Great views of the Reeks and Upper Caragh Lake on these walks. Walk along the banks of the river, past fishing huts, to Blackstone Bridge and the local GAA football field.
The Castle Rock Loop (2km) will guide you through the forest, climbing to about 90m before you descend into n atmospheric ravine continuing back on forest roads to the trailhead.
Lickeen Loop (2.2km) takes in the landmarks of Blackstones Bridge before leading you along a trail adjacent to the Caragh river before looping back via the wood.
The Kerry Life Loop (3.1km) is the wider loop that incorporates the best bits of the above. Sustainable land use management of the conservation of the freshwater pearl mussel is ongoing in this area.
The iconic Kerry Way is 214km in length passes through Lickeen. Take a look at our blog on Hikes and Longer Walks for more detail.
9. Carragh Lake Loop Walk, Kerry
Distance 1.7 km loop walk – Difficulty Medium – Level 3 walk – Family Friendly.
Caragh Lake is in the Reeks district of Kerry, a walk is a great place for views the Caragh Lake Forest parking is just beside the lake and near Lake House Hotel Caragh Lake walk is a short 30-minute walk great for families. It is a 1.7 km walk and is a great muscles burner with very pleasant surroundings.
If visiting Caragh Lake for the views of mountains venture up the Mountain trail (410m 10 mins) where you will have a full. view of Killorglin, MacGillycuddy Reeks, Glenbeigh, Inch beach, the Dingle peninsula and the Atlantic.
10. Beateen Loop Walk, Caherciveen, Kerry.
Distance -10km. Difficulty – Strenuous – Level 4
The Beeteen loop is a 10km walk, this walk is hard to above average of fitness. The walk is found just outside the town of Cahersiveen, starting at the Fairgreen car park. You will find a map board located at the top of the park.
The length of this loop walk, combined with rough ad boggy stretches on Beeteen hill and the accumulated ascent make it quite demanding, but the tremendous views from the are very rewarding.
Activity – Take a boat trip to Skellig Island .
11. Derrynane Mass Path, Ring of Kerry, Ireland.
Distance – 6.3 Loop walk Difficulty
The DerrynaneMass Path is a 6.3km walk, the walk is a turn off the N70 Ring of Kerry Road onto the minor Derrynane Road. The walk begins at famous Derrynane House- signposted on the road as the home of Daniel O’Connell. The house is maintained by the OPW and richly decorated in the period of the house, well worth a guided tour. The beach is behind the house.
12. Lomanagh Loop Walk, Sneem, Kerry.
Distance – 14km loop walk. Difficulty Moderate – level 3 fitness.
The Lomanagh loop walk Sneem, is a 14km walk it starts in the town of Sneem. Park in the north square of the village and find the signposts for the Fermoyle walking loop in front of the Charles De Gaulle sculpture. Follow the white arrow along the minor road out of the village to begin on the Lomanagh loop walk.
15. Gleninchaquin Valley Walks, Kenmare, Kerry
Distance 1 to 6km loop walks. Difficulty – Easy to Strenuous depending on a walk- level 2 to 4 Fitness.
Gleninncaquin valley is on the Beara Peninsula off the R571 about 17km west of Kenmare town to Tuosist road. Be careful not to miss the sign on the left side of the road, turning in a long narrow valley road of about 8km long, where you have to pull to let others pass. There is a turn to the right after about 4km to the right to Uaigh standing stones, which also gives great views of the high waterfall at the end of the valley. Carpark and facilities by the farmhouse café at the head of the valley, with a nominal charge per person to the walks.
This stunning valley with lakes and walks for every level of fitness. This is still a working sheep farm with sheep and lambs so not suited to dogs. The walks of different levels are mapped and there is a rebuilt famine cottage to keep the older children interested. The most difficult walk is the Eskana walk over the waterfall at the head of the valley, at 483 m high. As well as sheep you may see the resident eagles swoop down the valley. Lovely picnic areas, not suited to buggy or wheelchair access on the walks, apart from the lane.
Other blogs on Kerry activity can be found on
- Drive the Ring of Kerry
- Best Beaches of Kerry
- Dingle Loop Walks & North Kerry Walks
- Kerry Hikes and Long Walks
- Killarney, Kenmare and Ring of Kerry Walks