The Best View in Ireland

Posted by Brette in Travel
Beach on the Ring of Kerry

Beach on the Ring of Kerry

I recently posted about Adare, called the prettiest town in Ireland. My assessment didn’t quite match the moniker. However, to offset that disappointment, we were lucky enough to stay someplace that had the most beautiful view we came across.  If you go to Ireland, you will be told that you must “do” the Ring of Kerry. This 179 kilometer drive is truly spectacular. It takes you along the coastline of the Iveragh Peninsula in County Kerry in southwest Ireland. We truly enjoyed the Ring of Kerry (might have enjoyed it more if we didn’t have two kids prone to carsickness) – the ocean views are gorgeous and the lovely little towns along the way break up the

View from the Ring of Kerry

View from the Ring of Kerry

scenery. If you go, be sure to pull down at least one of the roads that leads down to the beach. We stopped and found the most magnificent beach with ruins. But wait – this isn’t the best view in Ireland.

We took lots of photos as we drove around the Ring and all of them are spectacular. I’m sharing just a few here so you can get a sense of the overwhelming beauty of this area. The photos cannot do it justice and I would have loved to have more time to explore the area. We heard lots of warnings about getting stuck behind tour buses, but we had no problems at all. There was very little traffic and we had no problems getting around at all.

More Ring of Kerry

More Ring of Kerry

As gorgeous as the Ring of Kerry is, none of these are my favorite view.

We stayed at  theAghadoe Heights Hotel outside of Killarney while in the area. This was advertised as a luxurious spa hotel. It was a very modern hotel with comfortable surroundings.  While it was a lovely hotel, it didn’t quite live up to its hype, at least for the accommodations. Our beds were hard. The AC/heating unit was very loud and blew either very hard or not at all – in both rooms we had. Those complaints are minor however because the staff was very friendly (except for one waiter who seemingly became angry when we spilled something and seemed not interested in helping us), there was coffee, tea and fruit infused water in the lobby and the restaurant was simply excellent.  The best thing about the hotel was the view. It is nestled in the Kerry Mountains, overlooking the Lakes of Killarney. The view is so good that tour buses pull up and discharge people to walk over and take photos. I

Lakes of Killarney

Lakes of Killarney

could have sat in front of the giant picture window in our hotel room all day, simply watching the light play on the lakes, hills, and islands. There was an old church or monastery on one of the islands as well. There was no boat traffic at all.  The lakes are an incredible mosaic of different sized bodies of water, tiny islands, larger islands, and hills. It is simply enchanting. Inside the hotel there is a huge map on one of the walls, naming all of the islands and points.

The hotel is situated across a road from a viewing area and we walked over and would have sat on

Lakes of Killarney

Lakes of Killarney

the bench there for hours, just soaking in the beauty if we had had time.

We were able to see the Lakes of Killarney from other angles as well. Our Ring of Kerry pathway brought us through other parts of the area and we saw some stunning hills, lakes, and islands from other viewpoints. I would go back here and kayak to get to see it up close and personal. Hiking in the hills would be a lovely experience. There is so much to see and do here. We stayed two nights and could have spent so much more time here.

Kerry Mountains

Kerry Mountains

 

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