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Driving the Ring of Kerry

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36 reviews
13 helpful votes
Driving the Ring of Kerry

We will be driving the ROK on one of our days while staying in Killarney. Would it be best to get an early start well ahead of the tour busses and drive counterclockwise or drive the ring clockwise as some have recommended? Thanks for any reply.

Limerick, Ireland
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for Limerick
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1. Re: Driving the Ring of Kerry

Drive the Ring of Kerry ANTI-CLOCKWISE - this is how the locals and those in the know recommend it.

The only people who recommend driving the Ring of Kerry clockwise are people who know nothing about driving the Ring of Kerry.

I assuming you are referring to Rick Steves when you make your suggestion https:/…ring-around-the-ring-of-kerry

Rick Steves is not someone who knows much about Kerry and Pat O'Connor showed absolute contempt for Ireland in one of his pieces.

Leawood, KS
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2. Re: Driving the Ring of Kerry

Thanks, Bean. What time do you think best to start out in the morning?

Limerick, Ireland
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for Limerick
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3. Re: Driving the Ring of Kerry

The best time to start driving the ROK is when YOU are ready :o)

The busses tend to start early - remember they are on a schedule. But for the most part they start in Killarney. So you are an hour behind them anyhow!!

HOWEVER for me the best bits of the Ring are OFF the Ring. And these are the places the tour busses don't go.

Firstly if you are starting from Kenmare you have the incredible N71 road to drive. This is mindblowingly spectacular. I've driven it many times and am still gobsmacked by it. You won't have time to see Muckross House and Gardens, Muckross Abbey and Torc Waterfall at this time but make sure you get to see them.

Rossbeigh Beach is at the end of Glenbeigh - take a right turn at the fork at the end of the village and follow the signs. Its beautiful.

Valentia Island is accessible via a bridge at Portmagee and is wonderful

Skelligs Chocolate Factory and St Finian's Bay - what can I say. Spectacular chocolate in a spectacular setting. www.skelligschocolate.com

Ballinskelligs Bay - google image it. It has its own castle - damaged by the storms of Winter 2013-14 But beautiful.

Derrynane House and Tropical Gardens www.heritageireland.ie/en/derrynanehouse/

Have a lovely holiday.

Beaufort, Ireland
Level Contributor
3,993 posts
124 reviews
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4. Re: Driving the Ring of Kerry

What happened to the castle in Ballinskelligs Bean? I was there in April and didn't notice much except it was nearly cut off by water.

Level Contributor
28 posts
36 reviews
13 helpful votes
5. Re: Driving the Ring of Kerry

We are actually starting in Killarney. Thanks so much for the great tips. We have 3 days so we will do the Park, Muckross, etc on a different day.

Ireland
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6. Re: Driving the Ring of Kerry

Where is the starting point for doing the ring of Kerry anti clockwise from Killarney town? Thanks

Beaufort, Ireland
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3,993 posts
124 reviews
94 helpful votes
7. Re: Driving the Ring of Kerry

Head for Killorglin and then Glenbeigh and basically follow your nose until Kenmare , then back to Killarney on the N71.

I would also echo Bean's recommendations above, in particular, the Skellig ring ( turn right after Caherciveen for Portmagee, continue around via Ballinskelligs and back onto the RoK. The views are spectacular, better imo, than even those on the main RoK.

Limerick, Ireland
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8. Re: Driving the Ring of Kerry

Copy and paste this into your browser if it doesn't work here https://www.google.ie/maps/dir/Killarney,+Co.+Kerry/Rossbeigh+Strand/Valentia+Island/Skelligs+Chocolate,+Kerry/Ballinskelligs/Derrynane+House,+Kerry/Kenmare/Killarney/@51.9328725,-10.1428628,10z/data=!4m55!4m54!1m5!1m1!1s0x48453c0cb4976ed9:0xa00c7a9973174c0!2m2!1d-9.5044265!2d52.0599353!1m5!1m1!1s0x48455bd2d021d6cb:0xcf8b2645c301f085!2m2!1d-9.9758906!2d52.0674302!1m5!1m1!1s0x484fecca585aa79f:0x6f03a2269050d7ef!2m2!1d-10.3548996!2d51.9107738!1m5!1m1!1s0x484f93bf2daf354d:0xf1f3eb9e176cb15a!2m2!1d-10.329929!2d51.846!1m5!1m1!1s0x484f918975b52915:0xa00c7a99731b7a0!2m2!1d-10.2730136!2d51.8244027!1m5!1m1!1s0x484f8f5cff6982dd:0x61b6d23b61cb5d61!2m2!1d-10.1306!2d51.762402!1m10!1m1!1s0x48456cab08fc9d19:0xa00c7a9973217f0!2m2!1d-9.5835174!2d51.8800967!3m4!1m2!1d-9.6363063!2d51.9467965!3s0x48456a92c9e2686b:0x76e3ac7a38e44b77!1m5!1m1!1s0x48453c0cb4976ed9:0xa00c7a9973174c0!2m2!1d-9.5044265!2d52.0599353!3e0

Level Contributor
28 posts
36 reviews
13 helpful votes
9. Re: Driving the Ring of Kerry

Thanks Bean. Great map and great directions. I appreciate it.

Greencastle, Indiana
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438 posts
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10. Re: Driving the Ring of Kerry

By the way, allow at least 8 hours. The Ring is too beautiful to rush.