Welcome to Black Valley

The Black Valley
 
The Black Valley is on the southern side of MacGillycuddy's Reeks. It connects the Gap of Dunloe with Moll's Gap. The valley can be seen from Ladies' View, a vista along the road through the Killarney National Park, and is famous for being the last place on mainland Ireland to be connected to electricity and telephone because of its remoteness. While most tourists stick to the main roads through the Killarney National Park, you can brave the narrow road through the valley to see a wild part of Ireland.
 
There are few homes in the Black Valley and you can drive for miles without seeing a house. What visitors will see  depends on the season. During the tourist season, from the middle of  spring to late summer, acre upon acre of bog cotton and wild yellow irises blanket the valley floor. Wild red fuchsia, purple heather and bright yellow gorse line the road and rocky outcrops. Cascades, streams, lakes and rivers flow through blanket bog and woody glens. Late in the season, leafy woodlands  and changing colors show another side of the valley.
 
Lord Brandon's Cottage
 
At the junction between the valley road and the Head of the Gap, visitors will come to Lord Brandon's Cottage. The cottage was the hunting lodge for Lord Brandon, the Reverend William Crosbie (1 November 1771 to 3 May 1832)...Baron of Brandon and Rector of Castleisland. His obituary says that Lord Brandon was "a man of superior order of mind and of great literary attainments." He was respected by his friends and colleagues because he was a warm and generous person. For much of the last twenty years of his life he lived in his lakeside cottage in Killarney, now called Lord Brandon's Cottage, though the last two years his home was in Nice, France, where the weather was better for his aging constitution.
 
Today, the original cottage is a ruin, but there is a cafe on the site for visitors. Paths wander through the surrounding lands, and there is a jetty behind the house where you can get a boat tour of the Killarney Lakes.
 
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