The Kerry Way

South Kerry Development Partnership, Library Place, Killorglin
Tel.: +353 (0) 66 9761615
The Kerry Way in the National Park. ©Trisha Deane Daniel O'Connell's Old Coach Road, The Kerry Way, Glenbeigh. ©Patricia Deane The Kerry Way, Cahersiveen. ©Patricia Deane

The Iveragh Peninsula is the largest of Kerry’s Atlantic peninsulas, extending 60 kilometres into the ocean from the mainland, and it is 32 kilometres across at it's widest point.

The Iveragh contains the Killarney Lakes with their mountainous backgrounds, the most famously picturesque landscapes in Ireland since tourism began in the late eighteen hundreds. The main mountain group on the peninsula, called the Macgillicuddy Reeks, contains the two highest summits in Ireland, Carrauntoohil at 1038m and Caher at 1001m.

The Kerry Way, at 230km the longest of the Irish Waymarked Trails, is a circular route that circumnavigates the peninsula, starting and finishing in Killarney, and also passing through fine Kerry towns such as Glenbeigh, Caherciveen, Waterville, Sneem and Kenmare.

The landscape the route passes through is very varied, from the lakes of Killarney to high and remote mountain moorland: Carrauntoohil and Caher tower over the route west of Black Valley and the return leg passes along the startlingly contrasting semi-tropical, palm-treed south coast. Terrain consists mainly of quiet tarmac roads, open moorland, woodland and field paths and boreens. Some sections of the open moorland can be very isolated, and off-road sections can often be very wet and muddy.

Aggregate ascent over the whole route is about 5400m, and there are some sustained and quite steep climbs. The highest point on the Way is 385m above sea-level, at Windy Gap between Glenmore and Caherdaniel.

There are some long stretches between overnight accommodation possibilities, and walkers should plan their days carefully to take these into consideration: public transport options are very good.

 

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The Kerry Way
Ordnance Survey Map
OSI Discovery Series Sheets 78, 83, 84, 70* (*ca 1.3km on track) and 85** (**ca 1.9km on road)
Finish Point Grid Reference
V 963 906
Start Point Grid Reference
V 963 906
Format
Loop
Type of Walk
National Waymarked Trail
Finish Point
Killarney
Start Point
Killarney
Climb
5310 metres
Estimated Time to Complete entire Trail
9 days
Length of Walk
214 Kms
Grade
Strenuous
Accommodation Enroute, Accommodation Enroute, Beach Sections, Beach Sections, Craft Shops Enroute, Easy Levels, Hard Levels, Local Shops Enroute, Medium Levels, Mixed Levels, Mountain Sections, Mountain Sections, Off Road Trails, Off Road Trails, Parking, Places to Eat Enroute, Stunning Scenery, Stunning Scenery, Villages enroute, Villages Enroute,
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