A day trip to Kerry: we have a guest!

Happy Thanksgiving wishes for everyone! 

Today we have a guest, but before he arrives we are going to drive to Muckross, visit Killarney National Park and finally take that jaunting car ride you are dreaming about 😉

From the Molls Gap we take a road to Killarney. We are going to return by the same road later, but it won’t be boring since the road is beautiful and there are places to see. The road sign says ‘100 km/h’ but it is not for us 🙂 Please never drive over 80. There are cyclists, hikers, drivers who are trying to park, and you don’t want to create a tragedy.

As we drive we pass a number of spots suitable for parking of one or two cars, and with any luck we will park for a minute and walk to the lake.

Killarney NP

Killarney NP

Finally we see a huge blue sign Killarney National Park , turn in the gateway and drive to the Muckross House. You can spend your ‘time allowance’ (3 hours altogether) in the House and the Gardens and hire a jarvey to take you to the Muckross Abbey and back.

Muckross Abbey

Muckross Abbey

Killarney jarveys have been around for over 200 years.

jaunting car

 

 

The jaunting cars had been banned from the National Park, and were allowed back again.

jaunting car

I won’t share any pictures of the house. The Muckross House website has enough information, and there is also Google.

You will have to book a tour to see the interior, but if something goes wrong and there is no tour, just take a walk along the lake and visit the National Park. Here you can find two walks to choose from, and here another few.

My personal favorite is the 8 miles long Muckross Lake Loop, that also starts from the Muckross House. You will love these miles 🙂 Pictures below were taken from this trail.

Killarney NP

Killarney NP

Killarney NP

Killarney NP

Bridge between Lough Leane and Muckross Lake.

Killarney NP

Meeting of the Waters – Lough Leane, with Muckross Lake behind me.

Killarney NP

On the way to the Dinis cottage ( you will love their scones). Poor hiker gave up, apparently.

Killarney NP

After we are done with hiking, my plan is to go back to the Molls Gap to pick up our guest. On the way, we will visit one of the most photographed vistas in Ireland – Ladies View.

This is the classic view.

ladies' view

You can drive just a little bit further to enjoy the same view and a bonus walk.

ladies view

Killarney NP

Killarney NP

Killarney NP

Before I introduce our guest, I want to share a funny video. Foil Arms and Hog here give you an idea about riding/driving in Kerry 😉

 

 

Listening to these confusing directions, I started to worry about our guest getting around Kerry, so I sent him a few photographs in advance 🙂

And – here he is! Meet Kevin Hotter from KevinHotter.com!

Kevin, please tell us about yourself and the reason you are here with us on this trip.

Hi Everyone! Kevin Hotter, here. It’s a pleasure to meet you all. 

I’m an American lawyer, comedian, writer and photographer who lives in sunny Los Angeles. As if that stuff doesn’t keep me busy enough, I’m also a husband and a dad. And those two roles are my favorite! (Gotta make sure my wife reads that part.) 

Thank you so much to Inese for sending me photos of the beautiful areas of Ireland from which my maternal grandparents hail. 

My mother’s parents arrived in America separately. Having never met back in the old country, their paths first crossed while living in Chicago (which, at the time, was a very popular destination for Irish immigrants.) After getting married, they moved to New York City. And that’s where my mom was born and raised. 

How Irish do you feel?

I definitely inherited the famous Irish wit. And in my stand-up comedy routine, I definitely tell a few jokes about my Irish-Catholic upbringing and my very fair (and easily sunburned) Irish skin. Living in California, I finally have a tan! Well, kinda. Haha 

My humor is meant to bring people together and to poke fun at this thing called life. As for my Irish jokes, it’s all in good fun – because I’m extremely proud of my Irish roots. 

Well, enough of my blabbing! Thanks for reading about little ol’ me.  And please swing by my blog to say hi! 

Thank you for joining us, Kevin! 

Please visit Kevin’s blog to enjoy his outstanding photography.


We resume our trip and take off to Kenmare and The Ring of Beara before starting the homestretch of our day-long journey – The Ring of Kerry. It is a lunch time, and we will get something to eat on the way. Good news, folks! You can park for free in Kenmare! You can also stop for lunch at Molly Gallivan’s. The 90 km journey will take some 2.5 hours. Watch for the parking opportunities so that you can take a photograph, but don’t be a nuisance and danger to the other road users. Our loop route:  Kenmare – Glengarriff – Adrigole – Healy Pass – Glanmore Lake – Kenmare. Not the whole ring, but enough to remember that the Ring of Beara is the most scenic route in Ireland.

Leaving Molls Gap and heading to Kenmare.

Pretty Kenmare town, full of colors.

A nice place to have a lunch (opens @12pm)

Molly Gallivan’s Cottage, and a 12 ft Druid pointing his camera at the Barra-Bui Peak.

Druid’s view 🙂

Scenic road to Glengarriff is also a road from Co Kerry to Co Cork. Beara peninsula is the only peninsula in Ireland that is located in two counties.

Climbing the Healy Pass from Adrigole, south to north. In the middle of the tourist season, I would drive north to south: if you never have a chance to stop, the beautiful view is still in front of you all the way down. It is only my suggestion though. You can also take great pictures from the summit.

As we crossed over the Healy Pass, Glanmore Lake view is our reward.

We return to Kenmare sneaking through the beautiful vistas. See you again in two weeks to resume the Ring of Kerry trip. It will take another 5-6 hours to complete (including a stop for dinner in Waterville).

 Have a wonderful weekend!

151 comments

  1. Such beautiful places, captured in all their glory by your gifted eyes. I loved touring Muckross House and the surrounding area when we visited Ireland a couple of years ago. I’d love to return!

    1. Thank you! On my last trip, I didn’t have a chance to visit the House. By the way, there is another period building – Killarney House with the entrance close to Ross Castle road. I think they don’t require booking.
      Any golf holidays in Ireland next year?

      1. I doubt we’ll get back there that soon; although, my husband has admitted he’d like to return someday and NOT play golf! He hasn’t really seen much of the country except for the golf courses.

  2. Very lovely scenes from the park. Some of the pictures remind me of sceneries I’ve have seen when I visited Ireland. The small colorful town is one of them. I did not recall the name of the town that I visited there but remembered small stores around town. I loved them.

    1. Thank you! I am always so delighted when you find something familiar in my posts. West coast of Ireland is famous for their colorful buildings, and I am not surprised that you remember them 🙂 Small stores and pubs painted in bright colors are a hallmark of a small Irish town. They do look cute 🙂

    1. Thank you! Yes, no one should go home without this picture 🙂 Classic! I wish I ever get a sunny weather.
      I liked the Ring before they improved the roads. Remember the descent to Waterville – it felt like flying a small aircraft 🙂

  3. Inese, you could photograph the phone book and my eyes would be on sticks. You just make the simplest picture of anything look effortless. ( I already know it is beautiful when your eye has captured it .) xx I mean that x

    1. Thank you! I am not much into landscape photography, but it is one of those places where you can take random snaps and get a beautiful picture. Come and see by yourself 🙂 xx

  4. I’m sure those directions make sense to someone – maybe the person giving them? Lovely countryside and Kevin has Irish blue eyes, doesn’t he?

  5. Oh, what stunning images, Inese! Brings back memories from the mid ’90s and a car rally in Ireland, we saw quite a lot of the places you have shown. The star image for me is the elegiac first one from the abbey – the old window and Celtic stone

    1. Thank you Sue, I am always delighted when somebody recognises the places I share 🙂 Was it an antique car rally? I always miss them, but once I came across a guy and his antique car in the middle of nowhere. He simply got lost 🙂
      The Abbey pictures are very old, taken before the latest restoration.

          1. It is a special shot that tells a 100 different stories. You do a lot of those. That is so kind of you Inese. I need to do the photograph proud. Leave it with me, and thanks again ~ George

  6. Beautiful photos. I’ve adopted the idea of looking small, and love the image of the rocks and twisted tree. Vistas are great and beautiful, but narrowing it down really worked for me. Are those red deer in the one picture?

    1. The rocks and the tree were impressive. The light was not right, but I wanted to share this picture anyway. Some tour operators stop at this place, but not the big buses. They usually stop at the classic Ladies’ View where you can only stand and look. Here you can walk around.
      It is the only herd of red deer in Killarney National Park. There was also a buck with spectacular antlers, but he isn’t in this picture. This is a very old picture – I haven’t hiked a decade 🙂

        1. You are right. I think these deer are not really wild. They suspiciously cling to one particular place which can only mean somebody is feeding them.
          I am planning a hike in Killarney, but not in the park. Will see how I feel next year.

    1. Thank you Rosaliene! Kevin’s grandparents came to the States from Cork and Kerry. As I traveled through the same counties, I took a few pictures for him 🙂

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