The Kerry Way is one of Ireland’s longest and oldest waymarked walking trails. With a pedigree stretching back forty years, this walker’s version of the Ring of Kerry has established itself as a firm favourite with seasoned walkers. On your 123 mile circuit of the Iveragh Peninsula you’ll walk through what are undoubtedly some of Ireland’s most spectacular landscapes.
Located on Ireland’s southwest corner the Kerry Way delivers an incredibly varied walking experience. The awe-inspiring views across Lough Leane and Muckross Lake, once seen, will never be forgotten. Nor will the sight of Torc Falls nestled in the dense woodland of Killarney National Park, Ireland’s oldest protected wilderness. In the north of the peninsula you’ll walk along centuries-old tracks passing beneath the magnificent MacGillycuddy’s Reeks, home to the country’s highest mountain, Carrauntoohil. Peaceful glens with their delightful sparkling loughs enhance the wild, natural beauty of the area further still. The south coast of the peninsula is different again with its wonderful coastal panoramas of turquoise waters, golden sands, rocky headlands and picturesque islets.
The Iveragh Peninsula is home to a variety of habitats and wildlife. In the uplands purple moor-grass is widespread and bog cotton flourishes on watery ground. Insect eating sundews and the purple-flowering greater butterwort are on display also. Overhead, look out for kestrels, peregrine falcons and if you are lucky, a white-tailed eagle. Sessile oak, holly and silver birch woodlands give shelter to white wood anemone and bluebells. On coastal trails keep an eye out for the black, fish-eating, cormorant. In spring and summer blackthorn, hawthorn, clematis and honeysuckle colour the hedgerows.
Heritage features heavily too as part of the peninsula is designated as Gaeltacht, a place where the Irish language is spoken and Irish culture is honoured. Wherever you go on your Kerry Way journey you are assured of a warm, Irish welcome.
We offer 3 holidays on the Kerry Way. We have The Whole Kerry Way, a demanding 123 mile circuit of the Iveragh Peninsula walked over 7 or 8 days, transferring to Galway’s Bridge to begin and finishing in Killarney. We also have the option to walk the 45 miles from Galway’s Bridge to Cahersiveen over 3 days featuring dramatic sections through the Black Valley and beneath the MacGillycuddy’s Reeks in the north of the peninsula. Finally we have the option to walk the 78 miles from Cahersiveen to Killarney over 5 or 6 days featuring some of the most stunning coastline the Iveragh Peninsula has to offer.
Due to the nature of the locations on the Kerry Way, these holidays have a daily average of between 15 and 20 miles with some days being as much as 22 miles long. If the thought of walking as many as 7 or 8 lengthy days seems too much of a challenge, then consider one of our two shorter holidays. Although the days remain lengthy, there will naturally be less of them. Should you need to shorten your day, a network of bus services serve all parts of the peninsula, most shadowing the trail along the N70/N71 Ring of Kerry road, although not all services run on all days.
Please bear in mind that the distances each day are trail distances only. They do not take into account walking to your accommodation. On some days the accommodation might be on or close to the trail but on other days you may need to walk one or two miles to get to your overnight stop.
Please note that about 35% of the route is on tarmac road, albeit incredibly scenic and predominantly along quiet lanes with little traffic. It is also worth noting whilst your guidebook has a detailed route description with maps in English, large areas of your Ordnance Survey Ireland 1:50k maps will be in Irish, not English. It is recommended you study them and familiarise yourself with the route and the maps ahead of your holiday.
The Kerry Way
Killarney to Killarney 123 miles/198 km
We offer 2 itineraries transferring from Killarney to Galway's Bridge and making an anti-clockwise circuit of the Iveragh Peninsula passing beneath the MacGillycuddy’s Reeks and returning to Killarney via the southern shores of the peninsula.
|Code||Length||Average per day||Price range|
|KW8||7 days walking (8 nights)||18 miles/29 km||£815 - £1025||Full Info Book|
|KW9||8 days walking (9 nights)||15 miles/24 km||£888 - £1128||Full Info Book|
Kerry Way North: Killarney to Cahersiveen
Killarney to Cahersiveen 45 miles/72 km
Transfer from Killarney to Galway's Bridge and walk to the capital of the Iveragh Peninsula, Cahersiveen. The trail passes beneath the MacGillycuddy’s Reeks, home to Ireland’s highest mountain, Carrauntoohil.
|Code||Length||Average per day||Price range|
|KWN4||3 days walking (4 nights)||15 miles/24 km||£426 - £516||Full Info Book|
Kerry Way South: Cahersiveen to Killarney
Cahersiveen to Killarney 78 miles/126 km
We offer 2 itineraries walking from Cahersiveen to Killarney. Having journeyed south to Caherdaniel, the trail heads along the coastline to Kenmare before the final stretch through the woods and moors of Killarney National Park.