Killarney in the southwest of Ireland is home to world-renowned mountains, lakes and an iconic national park. It also has its fair share of fantastic hidden gems too. Below we have listed 5 of Killarney’s best hidden gems.
Killarney National Park is full of hidden treasures, one of them being Ross Island. Ross Island is a claw-shaped peninsula that provides beautiful woodland walking trails with breathtaking views of the mountains and the lower lake. Many more of Killarney’s hidden gems can in fact be discovered on Ross Island, including the Copper Mining trail which offers a glimpse into 4500 years of copper mining in Ireland, the Governor’s Rock and Library Point. The better-known Ross Castle can also be found on the island, a 15th century tower house that is open to the public for guided tours.
Measuring 20 meters high, Torc Waterfall is a stunning cascade waterfall formed by the Owengarriff River as it drains from the Devil’s Punchbowl lough. Torc Waterfall is also situated in Killarney National Park at the base of Torc Mountain. Fortunately, there are various car parks just a short walk away from the falls or there are lots of leisurely walking trails that can lead you to it too. Visitors can climb to the top of the waterfalls via the stone path which takes around 30 minutes to complete. Be sure to keep your eyes peeled for Red Deer as they are often spotted in this area.
Innisfallen Island is the largest island on Lough Leane, the largest of the three lakes in Killarney. The island is home to the ruins of Innisfallen Abbey, one of the most impressive archaeological remains dating from the early Christian period. A small Romanesque church where early Irish history was once written can also be found on Innisfallen. The easiest way to reach the island is from Ross Castle, where boats leave from throughout the day during the summer months.
Located in Tomies Wood near the Gap of Dunloe, O’Sullivan’s Cascade is another beautiful waterfall in Killarney. Legend says that O’Sullivan’s Cascade once supplied chieftain of Fianna with the finest supply of whiskey rather than water. Although the waterfall is hidden away, it’s fairly easy to reach and is well sign-posted.
Gap of Dunloe
The Gap of Dunloe is a narrow mountain pass that separates the MacGillycuddy’s Reeks mountain range in the west from the Purple Mountain Group range in the east. This scenic wonder was formed 25,000 years ago during Ireland’s last ice age after a glacier broke out and carved out a U-shaped valley. Many visitors choose to walk through the Gap of Dunloe to experience the fresh, open air, this usually takes around 2 – 3 hours. Others choose to cycle through it or even hire a horse and carriage! Whatever way you travel through the Gap of Dunloe, you’re sure to experience the open-air sights, sounds and feeling of this remarkable place.
Discover the hidden gems of Killarney with Best of Scotland Holidays. Our Killarney holiday package will take you to the magnificent lakes and countryside. Killarney is populated with enthusiastic and welcoming people, eager to make sure that they are always moving forward and that their many visitors leave satisfied with their experiences. Find out more about our Killarney Lakes and Countryside package here or you can get in contact with us directly.