I’ve finally been able to get through all the images from our Ring of Kerry day in Ireland. There were so many of them, I’ve been putting it off for weeks and weeks, but I’m excited to finally have it done! The Ring of Kerry was one of the places we were most looking forward to visiting when we booked our trip to Ireland. In our initial itinerary, we had both the Ring of Kerry and Dingle Peninsula stuffed into one day. We were grateful we didn’t take this route, since it took us 10 hours to complete the Ring of Kerry alone. We originally read that it would only take about 5 hours for normal tourists, but we are definitely not normal. Driving the Ring of Kerry was like being a kid in a candy store. Our eyes would light up as we stumbled upon a new offshoot from the main highway road. Luckily we had our “parents”, Carly and Garrett there by our side to control our wanderlust and remind us what we could realistically handle in a day.
Looking back on all of our road trip adventures, each day seemed to follow the exact same trajectory. We would start off early in the day, super excited, jumping at the first glimpse of something pretty, and would commit a little too much time to it. This pattern would repeat itself at every new spot until we were way behind schedule, and then we would scramble to finish the day. Thankfully, towards the end of the trip, we finally learned to create time buffers and set timers so that we could maintain a more reasonable schedule.
Even if you’ve never been to Ireland, you may have heard the tales of how narrow the roads are. This was especially true on the Ring of Kerry drive. We headed out early in the morning from our hotel near Kenmare (Sheen Falls Lodge), driving clockwise (tour buses have to drive counter clockwise, so this strategy helps ensure you don’t get stuck behind them. On a drive this beautiful you don’t want to be stuck looking at the back of a bus the entire time). Within 15 or 20 minutes, we saw a turnout spot where a couple other cars were parked. We stopped, threw on our Hunter boots and took a dirt path down to some pretty tidepools. Just looking at these photos instantly took me back! We were so excited and I miss it so much already.
Our next major stop, which was our longest of the day was, Derrynane Beach. The wind was howling and our hair was flying everywhere, but the sun shining. We could tell it was more of a local’s beach because people were wearing shorts, some were swimming, and almost everyone had a dog. We spent a good hour and half there exploring. So much time, in fact, that the tide came in and became so high that we had to climb along the rocks to get back to our car. Luckily we had our rain boots on, but other less fortunate people were getting pretty wet.
Look at those cuties! I wish we didn’t live across the country from each other. They truly are a special pair and Thomas and I feel so lucky to have them as friends. This was our second trip together but definitely not our last. P.S. Carly recently launched her new site and it looks amazing! I was lucky enough to get a few sneak peeks during the process and was so excited for her. I couldn’t think of anything more Carly & TCP!
Once back to the car, we knew we needed to make up for lost time. We set our sites on Waterville, where we planned to eat lunch. We settled on the only place that looked somewhat busy, had a quick (but delicious) fish and chips, and got back on the road. We first drove to Kerry’s Most Spectacular Cliffs, which were truly spectacular. Off in the distance you could see Skellig Michael, now famous for its role in the final scene of the most recent Star Wars movie. You can actually take a tour out to the island, with most tours leaving from Portmagee.
Our next stop was Ballycarbery Castle close to the town of Cahersiveen. This small castle was incredibly fun to explore. The ruins were filled with hidden passages and staircases everywhere. It makes for a pretty awesome photo backdrop! Since it was later in the day, it wasn’t packed with tourists, which we were grateful for.
To end our day, we drove all the way back to Killarney for dinner. It was a Sunday with a bank holiday on Monday, so the town was alive with activity. Restaurants were packed, the streets were filled with people, and the bars were buzzing with sounds of Irish music and people chattering over their pints of Guinness. We enjoyed a nice dinner, and, had it not been for our 10 hours of exploring and energy levels on empty, we would have loved to have stayed for a drink and some music. Instead, we made the 30 minute drive back to our hotel at Sheen Falls, built a fire in the fireplace, and had tea and chocolates which we had picked up in Killarney. We were all suppose to work that evening, but we ended up chatting way past midnight, getting excited for the day to follow.