Ballyheigue (Irish Baile Uí Thaidhg) is a lovely coastal village 12 miles north of Tralee on the R551. It is a scenic resort town with miles of beaches that connect to Banna Strand to the south, and Kerry Head to the north. Much of Ballyheigue's history centres around the great castle overlooking the village. Built by Colonel James Crosbie in 1810, the castle grounds have been turned into a golf course. Ballyheigue has an extensive sandy beach within a designated Special Area of Conservation. You can swim in the clean Atlantic waters on the beautiful blue flag beach. It is one of the safest beaches in Kerry and is life guarded throughout the bathing season. The beach runs from Ballyheigue south for over 2 miles to the Black Rock and to the outlet from Lough Akeragh. Lough Akeragh is one of the best sites in Europe for migrating American waterfowl. With plenty of watersports on the beach, the bay is suitable for windsurfing and kitesurfing, Ballyheigue beach is ideal for family fun and water adventurers.
For golfers, there is a new 9-hole golf course in Ballyheigue. Opened in 1996, the 9 hole Castle Golf Course is on mature woodland surrounding the 18th century castle. With the castle as a backdrop and stunning sea and mountain views, Castle Golf Club is among the most beautiful courses in the country. Ardfert’s 9-hole Golf Club is only a short drive south jof Tralee and a short drive from the 18-hole links courses in Tralee and Ballybunion.
For fisherman, bird watchers and hikers Ballyheigue is a great destination. It is famous for its sea fishing, and fishermen will find a bountiful supply in the rivers Feale and Smerlagh. There are numerous locations for rock-fishing around the Kerry Head Peninsula too.
The many walks and cycling routes take you from Ballyheigue around Kerry Head and Maulin Mountain. The Maulin Mountains provide a vast panoramic view over land and ocean. The North Kerry Way includes Ballyheigue and continues over the low hills of Kerry Head. The Kerry Head Ring takes you west out of the village, where you will see stunning seas, sweeping panoramic views across Tralee Bay, the Slieve Mish Mountain Range. In the west is the sacred peak of Mount Brandon. The Maharees Peninsula juts out into Tralee Bay and around it cluster the little islands known as the Seven Hogs and in the centre of the bay is Mucklaghmore Rock. Looking north, you will see the south coast of Clare across the Shannon estuary to Loop Head.
Enjoy an action packed Summer Festival held in the village each summer over one week in July. With activities for every age, great fun is assured for all.
One of the great traditions of North Kerry is the Pattern Day in Ballyheigue held on September 8th (The feast day of the Birthday of Our Blessed Lady). The focal point of the devotion is Mass at Our Lady's Well. The festivities continue another day with "Crubeen Day”, where the local pubs serve traditional Irish festival food, crubeens (pigs feet).
The village contains everything for your everyday needs, shops, post office, restaurants, pubs and a local hotel. A safe playground for children and parents can enjoy the beautiful sea views. The village is ideally placed for exploring Tralee, Killarney, the Dingle Peninsula and the Ring of Kerry.
Remember Ballyheigue has so much, great places to stay, restaurants, bars, a safe Blue Flag beach, water sports, golf, fishing, walks, bird watching and festival fun.