Tarbert (Irish: Tairbeart, from an Old Norse term meaning "draw-boat"), is a town in the north of the county, with wonderful woodland to the south and the sheltered waters of the Shannon Estuary to the north. It is the gateway to the magical and enthralling North Kerry countryside. The wonderful scenery serves as an appetizer for the many attractions and activities which are available to you in the locality. It lies on the N69 coast road that runs along the estuary from Limerick before turning inland at Tarbert towards Listowel.
Tarbert is located on the shores of the River Shannon, offering not only a number of lovely walks along the banks of the river but also great angling opportunities. The village is home to eight pubs, two restaurants and a hostel. The hostel is located in an immaculate 18th Century three storey stone house which has been totally refurbished.
Arriving in Kerry through Tarbert sets the scene! The Killimer car and pedestrian ferry is an activity in itself offering the opportunity to dolphin watch en-route. Local visitor attractions include Tarbert’s Bridewell Visitor Centre which exhibits details on the justice system in Ireland in the 19th Century; Tarbert House, a Queen Anne Georgian period building and home to the Leslie family, was built in the 1600's and visited over the years by some famous people such as Daniel O'Connell, Charlotte Bronte and Winston Churchill; and stop for a coffee at the Ferry House, a 200-year-old building that was once the Leslie Arms.
There is a great variety of activities available locally including fishing, boating, swimming, fowling, hunting, hill walking, bird watching and athletics. Take the family on a dolphin watching tour departing from the pier at Tarbert.
Close by in Ballylongford, visit Carrigafoyle Castle (a tower house built in 1490 by Conor Liath O’Connor Kerry, located just two miles from Ballylongford), and the Franciscan Lislaughtin Abbey, built by the O’Connors in 1478.
The Tarbert Cuckoo Walking Festival which is held in July gives you the opportunity to take part in walks which will take you through natural woodlands, bog lands, farmland and along quiet country roads. Enjoy the experience of this beautiful rural landscape and savor the hospitality of the local community.
Overlooking the magnificent Shannon Estuary, Tarbert is the perfect centre for touring and holidaying in Kerry. There are many golf courses all within easy reach, including the world famous Ballybunion Links Course, just 25 km along the coast road. The beautiful and unspoilt sandy beaches of Ballybunion, Ballyheigue and Banna are all within driving distance where you can enjoy a wide range of water based activities.
Following the N69 route you arrive at the historical town of Listowel which is acclaimed nationally and internationally as a place of literary excellence and where there are many super visitor attractions to enjoy. Staying on the N69 you arrive at our county capital Tralee, with its own excellent choice of shopping and visitor attractions. Both towns are within an hour’s drive of Tarbert.