There are unique attractions, activities and things to do in Killarney Ireland, that separate this town from any other Irish city or tourist attraction. Nestled amid the sublime scenery of lakes, forests, and rolling green valleys in County Kerry, the charming town of Killarney offers visitors an abundance of engaging things to see and do.
Get your adrenaline pumping with adventure activities like mountain hikes in prized Killarney National Park, sail through frothy rapids on a thrilling white water rafting trip, and ride horseback through the mystical Gap of Dunloe.
After working up an appetite exploring the rugged outdoors, satisfy your cravings with a pint in one of Killarney’s many traditional Irish pubs overflowing with craic and ceol (fun and music).
From cozy little shops on High Street to magnificent historic estates like Muckross House and Gardens, Killarney truly has something unique for everyone.
Come ready to browse, hike, bike, feast, and laugh your way through this vibrant Irish town overflowing with magnificent scenery and welcoming hospitality.
Enjoy the natural beauty of Killarney National Park, including the scenic drive along the Ring of Kerry and hiking through the Gap of Dunloe.
Visit historical attractions such as Muckross House and Gardens, Ross Castle, and St. Mary’s Cathedral.
Immerse yourself in Irish culture with experiences like a jaunting car ride, traditional Irish music, and dining at local Irish pubs.
Engage in outdoor activities like boating on the Lakes of Killarney, exploring the Ring of Kerry, and participating in the Killarney Adventure Race.
Top Things To Do In Killarney Ireland
1. Exploring the Killarney National Park
You’ll love exploring the beautiful Killarney National Park! Located in County Kerry, Ireland, this stunning park is a must-visit destination for nature lovers.
As you wander through the park, you’ll be surrounded by breathtaking landscapes and diverse wildlife. Make sure to take a scenic drive along the famous Ring of Kerry, a 179-kilometer route that showcases the park’s natural beauty.
Don’t miss the opportunity to visit the enchanting Lakes of Killarney, where you can take a boat ride and soak in the peaceful atmosphere. For a more adventurous experience, hike through Gap of Dunloe and witness its rugged beauty firsthand.
And lastly, make sure to explore Ross Castle, an impressive fortress located on the edge of Lough Leane. With its rich history and stunning surroundings, Killarney National Park offers endless opportunities for exploration and discovery.
As one of the top things to do in Killarney Ireland, Muckross House is a stunning Victorian mansion that offers a glimpse into the past. Wander through its grand rooms filled with period furniture and exquisite artwork, and learn about the history of the house and its former inhabitants.
Afterward, step outside and be amazed by the well-manicured gardens that surround the house. From vibrant flower beds to serene lakeside walks, there is something for everyone to enjoy. Take a leisurely stroll along the paths lined with ancient trees or relax by the tranquil waterfalls.
The beauty of Muckross House and Gardens is truly captivating, making it a must-visit attraction in Killarney Ireland.
3. Taking a Jaunting Car Ride
Hop aboard a jaunting car for a charming ride through the picturesque streets of Killarney. It is one of the best ways to explore this beautiful town and experience its rich history.
As you sit comfortably on the cushioned seats, your friendly driver will regale you with fascinating tales about Killarney’s past and point out the best places to visit along the way. The rhythmic clip-clop of the horse’s hooves adds a touch of nostalgia to your journey, as you pass by stunning Victorian architecture and vibrant shops.
Feel free to ask questions and engage in conversation with your driver, who is sure to provide valuable insights into this enchanting place. A jaunting car ride is truly one of the must-do attractions in Ireland and an unforgettable experience in Killarney town.
4. Touring the Ross Castle
While touring the charming streets of Killarney, don’t miss the opportunity to visit Ross Castle. This historic fortress, nestled on the shores of Lough Leane, offers a captivating glimpse into Ireland’s rich history.
As you approach Ross Castle, you’ll be greeted by its imposing stone walls and towering turrets, transporting you back to a time of knights and battles.
Step inside and explore the castle’s well-preserved rooms, adorned with period furnishings and artifacts that tell tales of its storied past.
Don’t forget to take a stroll along the tranquil shores of Lough Leane, where you can admire breathtaking views of Killarney Lakes and even catch a glimpse of Torc Waterfall in the distance.
Ross Castle also serves as a starting point for tours in Killarney, allowing you to further immerse yourself in this enchanting region. And if you’re looking for more adventure, nearby attractions such as Killarney House offer additional opportunities to discover the beauty and history of this remarkable town.
5. Enjoying Traditional Irish Music
To fully immerse yourself in the culture of Killarney, don’t miss the chance to enjoy traditional Irish music. It is an essential experience that will transport you to the heart and soul of Ireland.
Killarney is renowned for its vibrant music scene, with numerous pubs and restaurants offering live performances. Whether you prefer lively jigs or heartfelt ballads, there is something for everyone.
As you listen to the melodic tunes, you’ll feel a sense of connection to the rich history and traditions of the country. The music creates an atmosphere that is both lively and intimate, making it a perfect accompaniment to your visit to Killarney National Park.
So grab a pint, sit back, and let the enchanting sounds of traditional Irish music wash over you as you eat in Killarney’s charming establishments.
6. Hiking in the Gap of Dunloe
When you’re in Killarney, don’t miss the opportunity to hike through the stunning Gap of Dunloe. Located in Killarney National Park, this iconic hiking trail offers breathtaking views and an unforgettable experience.
As you make your way through the rugged terrain, you’ll be surrounded by picturesque landscapes of rolling hills, sparkling lakes, and lush greenery. The trail winds its way through narrow mountain passes and charming stone bridges, immersing you in the beauty of nature.
Along the way, keep an eye out for local wildlife such as deer and sheep that roam freely in the area. Whether you’re an experienced hiker or a beginner looking for an adventure, hiking in the Gap of Dunloe is a must-do activity when visiting Killarney, Ireland.
7. Dining at Local Irish Pubs
For an authentic experience, you can’t go wrong with dining at local Irish pubs. When visiting Killarney, be sure to check out these top Irish pubs for a taste of traditional cuisine and lively atmosphere:
The Laurels: This charming pub offers hearty Irish dishes like beef and Guinness stew, served in a warm and welcoming setting.
Danny Mann Pub: Known for its live music sessions, this pub also serves delicious seafood chowder and traditional Irish breakfasts.
Murphy’s Bar: Enjoy a pint of Guinness alongside mouthwatering homemade pies and locally sourced seafood dishes.
Courtney’s Bar: With its cozy interior and friendly staff, this pub is the perfect spot to indulge in classic Irish fare such as shepherd’s pie or fish and chips.
Dining at local Irish pubs is not just about the food; it’s a chance to immerse yourself in Ireland’s rich culture while savoring delicious flavors.
Don’t miss out on this essential part of your Killarney experience!
8. Boating on the Lakes of Killarney
Boating on the Lakes of Killarney offers a serene and picturesque experience. Located in the heart of Killarney, Ireland, these lakes are a must-visit destination for nature lovers and adventure seekers alike.
As you glide across the crystal-clear waters, surrounded by lush green mountains and ancient forests, you can’t help but feel a sense of tranquility.
The Lakes of Killarney consist of three interconnected lakes – Lough Leane, Muckross Lake, and Upper Lake – each with its own unique beauty.
Whether you choose to rent a kayak or take a guided boat tour, exploring these lakes will allow you to discover hidden coves, small islands, and maybe even catch a glimpse of local wildlife.
Boating on the Lakes of Killarney truly is one of the top things to do in this enchanting Irish town.
9. Strolling through Killarney Town Centre
Killarney Town Center
While strolling through Killarney Town Centre, you can immerse yourself in the vibrant atmosphere of this charming Irish town. The streets are lined with colorful buildings and inviting shops, offering a variety of unique souvenirs and local crafts.
Take a leisurely walk and discover hidden gems like traditional pubs where you can enjoy live music sessions and taste delicious Irish cuisine. Don’t forget to visit the iconic St. Mary’s Cathedral, known for its stunning stained glass windows and intricate architecture.
As you meander through the town, take in the breathtaking views of the surrounding mountains and picturesque lakes that make Killarney so famous. With its lively energy and rich history, exploring Killarney Town Centre is truly one of the top things to do in Ireland.
Discover charming shops
Experience live music sessions
Indulge in delicious Irish cuisine
Visit St. Mary’s Cathedral
Enjoy breathtaking views
10. Admiring St. Mary’s Cathedral
When you visit Killarney Town Centre, be sure to take some time to admire the stunning St. Mary’s Cathedral and its intricate architecture. This iconic landmark is one of the top attractions in Killarney and a must-see for any visitor to Ireland.
As you approach the cathedral, you’ll be awed by its grandeur and striking presence. The exterior boasts elaborate stone carvings and towering spires that reach towards the sky.
Step inside, and you’ll be greeted by a beautifully decorated interior featuring stained glass windows, detailed mosaics, and ornate altar pieces. Take a moment to appreciate the craftsmanship that went into creating this masterpiece of Gothic Revival architecture.
Whether you’re a history buff or simply appreciate beautiful surroundings, St. Mary’s Cathedral is an absolute must-visit when exploring Killarney.
11. Discovering Torc Waterfall
After admiring the stunning St. Mary’s Cathedral, don’t miss the opportunity to discover Torc Waterfall. Located in Killarney National Park, this magnificent waterfall is a must-see attraction in Killarney, Ireland.
As you make your way through the park, you’ll be greeted by lush greenery and the soothing sound of rushing water. The sight of Torc Waterfall cascading down from a height of 70 feet is truly awe-inspiring.
To fully experience this natural wonder, take a leisurely stroll along the well-maintained pathway that leads you right to the base of the waterfall. Feel the mist on your face as you stand in awe of its power and beauty. Don’t forget to bring your camera to capture this picturesque moment!
Torc Waterfall is not only a sight to behold, but it also holds historical significance. Legend has it that Queen Victoria herself visited this enchanting spot during her visit to Ireland.
So when exploring Killarney’s top attractions, make sure to include Torc Waterfall on your list. It’s an experience that will leave you mesmerized by nature’s wonders and create lasting memories of your time in Killarney, Ireland.
12. Journeying to the Ring of Kerry
To fully immerse yourself in the beauty of Killarney, don’t miss the chance to journey along the scenic Ring of Kerry. This iconic route takes you on a captivating adventure through some of Ireland’s most breathtaking landscapes.
Here are three reasons why exploring the Ring of Kerry should be at the top of your list when visiting Killarney:
Majestic Mountains: As you drive along the ring, you’ll be greeted by towering mountains that seem to touch the sky. The rugged peaks and lush valleys create a picturesque backdrop that is simply awe-inspiring.
Coastal Charm: The route also offers stunning views of Ireland’s rugged coastline with its dramatic cliffs and pristine beaches. Take a moment to breathe in the fresh sea air as you admire the wild beauty that surrounds you.
Historic Sites: Along the way, you’ll encounter numerous historic sites such as ancient stone forts and monastic settlements. These remnants of Ireland’s rich history add an extra layer of intrigue to your journey.
Embark on this unforgettable journey along the Ring of Kerry and let its natural wonders and cultural heritage leave an indelible mark on your soul.
13. Shopping for Irish Crafts
Don’t miss the chance to explore the vibrant local markets and boutiques for a wide selection of authentic Irish crafts in Killarney. When it comes to shopping for Irish crafts, this charming town has plenty to offer.
From beautifully handcrafted jewelry to intricately woven textiles, you’ll find an array of unique and high-quality pieces that showcase the rich cultural heritage of Ireland.
Take a stroll through the bustling streets and immerse yourself in the lively atmosphere as you browse through the various shops. Whether you’re looking for a traditional Aran sweater or a stunning piece of Celtic artwork, there’s something here for everyone.
One place not to be missed is The Kerry Crafted Glass Studio, where skilled artisans create exquisite glassware using traditional techniques passed down through generations. Watch as they shape molten glass into delicate vases, bowls, and ornaments – truly mesmerizing!
Soak up the charm of Killarney while enjoying some retail therapy and bring home a piece of Ireland with you. Shopping for Irish crafts here is an experience not to be missed!
14. Experiencing the Killarney Brewing Company
If you’re a beer enthusiast, don’t miss experiencing the Killarney Brewing Company. Located in the heart of Killarney, Ireland, this brewery offers a unique and immersive experience for visitors.
Here are four reasons why it should be at the top of your list:
Brewery Tour: Take a guided tour through the traditional brewing process and learn about the history and craft behind their beers. From malting to fermenting, you’ll get an up-close look at how their delicious brews are made.
Tasting Room: After the tour, head to their cozy tasting room and sample a wide variety of their handcrafted beers. From refreshing lagers to rich stouts, there’s something for every palate.
Beer Garden: On sunny days, relax in their spacious beer garden while sipping on your favorite pint. Surrounded by lush greenery and picturesque views, it’s the perfect spot to unwind.
Gift Shop: Before you leave, don’t forget to stop by their gift shop where you can purchase souvenirs like t-shirts, glassware or even take home some of their award-winning beers.
So make sure to add experiencing the Killarney Brewing Company to your list of top things to do in Killarney!
15. Getting a Taste of Irish Whiskey
When you visit the Killarney Brewing Company, be sure to also get a taste of Irish whiskey. It’s one of the best things you can do in Killarney and a must-try for whiskey enthusiasts. The town is home to some top attractions, but experiencing the rich flavors of Irish whiskey should definitely be on your list.
There are several options for exploring Irish whiskey in Killarney. You can visit local distilleries and learn about the fascinating process of whiskey-making. Take a tour and discover the secrets behind this iconic drink while savoring its distinct flavors.
Don’t forget to sample different varieties of Irish whiskey, from single malts to blends. Each has its own unique character that will transport your taste buds to Ireland’s rolling green landscapes. Whether you’re a seasoned connoisseur or just starting your journey into whiskey appreciation, getting a taste of Irish whiskey in Killarney is an experience you won’t want to miss.
16. Enjoying the Killarney Racecourse
To fully enjoy your visit to Killarney, you’ll want to check out the thrilling races at the Killarney Racecourse. Located in the heart of County Kerry, this historic racecourse offers an exhilarating experience for both locals and tourists alike.
Here are four reasons why a trip to the Killarney Racecourse should be on your list of top things to do in Killarney Ireland:
Exciting Races:Witness the adrenaline-pumping action as horses thunder past you, jockeys giving their all in pursuit of victory.
Stunning Surroundings:Situated near the breathtaking Killarney National Park, the racecourse provides a picturesque backdrop of lush greenery and scenic beauty.
Cultural Experience: Immerse yourself in Irish traditions by attending one of their renowned racing festivals, where you can witness local customs and enjoy traditional music and dance.
So don’t miss out on this unique opportunity to experience the thrill of horse racing while exploring all that Killarney has to offer!
17. Visiting the Killarney House and Gardens
Located in the heart of County Kerry, you can explore the beautiful Killarney House and Gardens during your visit to Killarney. This historic mansion and its stunning gardens offer a delightful escape from the hustle and bustle of everyday life.
As you wander through the meticulously manicured gardens, you will be surrounded by colorful flowers, tranquil ponds, and ancient trees. The house itself is a magnificent example of 18th-century architecture, with its grand rooms filled with period furniture and artwork.
Don’t forget to visit the tearooms for a delicious treat or take part in one of their guided tours to learn more about the history and significance of this remarkable estate.
A visit to Killarney House and Gardens is truly one of the top things to do when exploring Ireland’s enchanting town of Killarney.
18. Participating in the Killarney Adventure Race
If you’re up for a thrilling challenge, don’t miss out on participating in the Killarney Adventure Race. This exciting event is one of the top things to do in Killarney, Ireland.
Known as one of the most scenic adventure races in the country, it offers participants an opportunity to test their endurance and enjoy breathtaking views at the same time. The race takes place in the stunning surroundings of Killarney National Park, with its rugged mountains and picturesque lakes.
You’ll have the chance to kayak across beautiful Muckross Lake, cycle through lush forests, and run along scenic trails. Whether you’re a seasoned athlete or just looking for an exciting experience, participating in the Killarney Adventure Race is sure to be an unforgettable adventure.
So grab your gear and get ready for an adrenaline-pumping day filled with excitement and natural beauty!
19. Exploring the Inec Killarney
When exploring Killarney, don’t forget to check out the Inec Killarney. This iconic venue is a must-visit for anyone looking for top things to do in Killarney, Ireland. Once you step inside, you’ll be captivated by its vibrant atmosphere and exciting events.
Here are three reasons why you shouldn’t miss out on Inec Killarney:
Unforgettable live performances: From world-renowned musicians to hilarious comedians, Inec Killarney hosts an array of unforgettable live performances that will leave you in awe.
Spectacular acoustics:The venue’s state-of-the-art sound system ensures that every note resonates perfectly, creating an immersive experience for every concert-goer.
Intimate setting:Despite its impressive size, Inec Killarney manages to maintain an intimate ambiance, allowing you to feel connected to the performers and truly immerse yourself in the magic of each show.
So don’t miss out on exploring Inec Killarney during your visit to Killarney, Ireland—it’s a cultural hotspot that guarantees a memorable experience.
20. Discovering the Kerry Cliffs
Make sure you don’t miss out on discovering the Kerry Cliffs, a breathtaking attraction in Killarney, where you can enjoy stunning views of the rugged coastline.
Located just a short distance from the town center, these cliffs offer an unforgettable experience for nature enthusiasts and adventure seekers alike.
As you make your way along the cliff path, be prepared to be amazed by the dramatic drop-offs and crashing waves below. The panoramic vistas of the Atlantic Ocean are simply awe-inspiring, with the jagged cliffs stretching as far as the eye can see.
Take your time soaking in the natural beauty of this hidden gem and snap some incredible photos to capture the moment forever.
Whether you’re a seasoned hiker or simply looking for a peaceful escape, discovering the Kerry Cliffs is an absolute must-do when visiting Killarney, Ireland.
21. Wandering through the Muckross Traditional Farms
Now that you’ve experienced the breathtaking beauty of the Kerry Cliffs, it’s time to continue your exploration of Killarney. Simply rent a car and take a short drive to the enchanting Muckross Traditional Farms. This popular tourist attraction allows you to step back in time and discover what life was like on an Irish farm in the 1930s and 1940s.
As you meander through this living museum, you’ll encounter traditional thatched cottages, friendly farm animals, and skilled craftspeople showcasing their talents. Don’t forget to immerse yourself in the fascinating history of rural Ireland at the visitor center.
After your visit, why not head back into town for some delicious food or explore more of the stunning scenery around Killarney National Park? There are plenty of hotels in Killarney to choose from, so you’re sure to find a comfortable place to rest after a day filled with adventure.
22. Touring the Franciscan Friary
After exploring Muckross Traditional Farms, be sure to visit the Franciscan Friary. Located in Killarney, Ireland, it is one of the top things to do in the area.
Touring the Franciscan Friary will transport you back in time as you discover its rich history and architectural beauty. As you step through its ancient stone walls, you will feel a sense of tranquility and spirituality that has been present for centuries. Admire the intricate details of the stained glass windows and marvel at the impressive gothic architecture.
Take a moment to reflect in the peaceful courtyard, surrounded by lush greenery and fragrant flowers. Whether you have a deep interest in history or simply want to experience a serene atmosphere, touring the Franciscan Friary is an absolute must when visiting Killarney, Ireland.
23. Walking the Old Kenmare Road
To fully immerse yourself in the beauty of the area, take a walk along the Old Kenmare Road. This scenic route offers breathtaking views and a chance to explore some of Killarney’s hidden gems.
Here are three reasons why this walk is a must-do:
Explore Killarney National Park:As you stroll along the Old Kenmare Road, you’ll be surrounded by the stunning landscapes of Killarney National Park. With its picturesque lakes, lush forests, and diverse wildlife, it’s no wonder this park is one of Ireland’s most beloved natural treasures.
Conquer Ireland’s highest mountain:The Old Kenmare Road leads you right to Carrauntoohil, the highest mountain in Ireland. If you’re up for a challenge, consider hiking to the summit for panoramic views that will take your breath away.
Access to the best places to visit: Walking along this road will bring you close to some of Killarney’s top attractions. From Muckross House and Gardens to Ross Castle, there are plenty of historical sites and cultural landmarks worth exploring.
So grab your walking shoes and head out on this unforgettable journey through Killarney’s enchanting landscapes! Don’t forget to stop by the charming town center afterwards for some well-deserved rest and relaxation.
24. Taking a Killarney Lake Tour
One way to fully experience the beauty of Killarney is by taking a Lake Tour. This popular activity allows you to explore the stunning lakes of Killarney, which are known for their crystal-clear waters and breathtaking scenery.
As you cruise along the lakes, you’ll be surrounded by lush greenery, towering mountains, and charming villages. The tour guides provide fascinating insights into the history and legends of the area, making it both educational and entertaining.
Don’t forget your camera because there will be plenty of photo opportunities along the way. The Killarney Lake Tour is definitely one of the top things to do in Killarney, Ireland, as it offers a unique perspective on this picturesque destination.
So hop aboard and get ready for an unforgettable adventure!
25. Exploring the Killarney Outlet Centre
Exploring the Killarney Outlet Centre is a must for anyone looking for great deals on designer brands. Located in the heart of Killarney, Ireland, this shopping center offers a wide range of options for fashion enthusiasts. Here are five reasons why you should visit:
Endless Variety: The outlet centre boasts an impressive selection of top-notch international and Irish brands.
Unbeatable Discounts: Prepare to be amazed by the incredible discounts available on clothing, accessories, and homeware.
Charming Atmosphere:The centre’s cozy ambience creates a pleasant shopping experience that is unique to Killarney.
Convenient Location:Situated close to other attractions in town, it’s easy to fit a visit to the outlet centre into your itinerary.
Friendly Staff: The knowledgeable and friendly staff are always ready to assist you in finding the perfect items.
So, if you’re seeking high-quality products at affordable prices while exploring Killarney, make sure to stop by the Killarney Outlet Centre.
Frequently Asked Questions
Are there any kid-friendly activities in Killarney National Park?
Yes, there are plenty of kid-friendly activities to enjoy in Killarney National Park!
Your little ones will love exploring the park’s beautiful surroundings on a family hike or bike ride.
They can also take a boat trip on the stunning lakes, where they might spot some wildlife.
For an educational experience, visit Muckross House and Gardens, which offers guided tours and fun activities for children.
The park is a fantastic destination for families looking to create lasting memories together.
How long does it take to tour Muckross House and Gardens?
It typically takes about 2-3 hours to tour Muckross House and Gardens. Located in Killarney National Park, this historic Victorian mansion offers a fascinating glimpse into Ireland’s past.
Explore the elegantly furnished rooms, stroll through the beautifully landscaped gardens, and learn about the rich history of the estate.
Don’t forget to take in the breathtaking views of nearby mountains and lakes as you immerse yourself in this enchanting experience.
So plan your visit accordingly and prepare for an unforgettable journey through time.
What is the best time of day to take a jaunting car ride?
The best time of day to take a jaunting car ride in Killarney is in the morning. As the sun rises, you’ll be greeted by the soft glow illuminating the picturesque landscapes.
The cool breeze and tranquil atmosphere make for an enchanting experience. You’ll meander through charming streets, lush green parks, and historic landmarks while your knowledgeable guide shares fascinating stories about the area’s rich history.
Don’t miss this magical journey that will leave you with lasting memories.
Can you tour Ross Castle on your own or do you need a guide?
You can absolutely tour Ross Castle on your own! Located in Killarney, Ireland, this stunning castle is open to the public for self-guided tours.
Explore the medieval architecture and learn about its rich history dating back to the 15th century. Wander through the rooms, climb up the tower for breathtaking views of Lough Leane, and imagine what life was like for those who once lived within these walls.
Don’t miss this must-visit attraction in Killarney!
Are there any specific recommendations for traditional Irish music pubs in Killarney Town Centre?
When it comes to traditional Irish music pubs in Killarney town centre, you’re in for a treat.
One highly recommended spot is Courtney’s Bar, known for its lively atmosphere and authentic tunes.
For a more cozy setting, head over to The Laurels Pub where you can enjoy the sounds of talented musicians while sipping on a pint.
Another great option is O’Connor’s Pub, which offers a warm and welcoming ambiance along with fantastic live music performances.
Conclusion – Things to Do in Killarney Ireland
In conclusion, Killarney, Ireland offers a plethora of exciting activities for you to enjoy. From exploring the stunning beauty of Killarney National Park to visiting the historic Muckross House and Gardens, there is something for everyone.
Don’t miss the chance to take a jaunting car ride through town or tour the medieval Ross Castle. Immerse yourself in traditional Irish music and discover the rich history at the Franciscan Friary. Walk along the Old Kenmare Road and take in breathtaking views.
And don’t forget to explore the shops at Killarney Outlet Centre. Your adventure awaits in Killarney!
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