If you’re looking for a fun, exciting and magical Christmas Festival to take the family to this festive season, then don’t look any further than the picturesque town of Killarney in County Kerry.
Tucked away in the south west corner of Ireland, you’ll find the beautiful town of Killarney, sitting pretty at the edge of the three lakes under the shadow of the McGillycuddy Reeks – Ireland’s tallest mountain range. This colourful and vibrant town is a hub of activity all year round, but it especially comes alive at Christmas.
The Christmas in Killarney Festival 2007 is a month long event, and with two successful years under its belt, this years promises to be bigger and better.
The festival kicks off on Thursday 29th of November with a colourful and fun Children’s Christmas Parade and the turning on of the Christmas lights. The parade will start about 6.30pm, and of course, the man himself, Santa Claus, will also make an appearance.
For the next five weeks, young and old can enjoy a jammed packed programme of activities and events. The highlight of the festival will be yet again, the Ice Skating Rinc, which will open daily (except Christmas Day) from Friday 7th of December to Friday 6th of January 2008.
Of course, Christmas isn’t complete for the little ones without a visit to see Santa at Santa’s Lodge. This year Santa’s Lodge will be located in the magical winter wonderland setting of Deenagh Lodge in the Killarney National Park. It’s open from 2pm-5pm on the 8th, 9th, 15th, 16th and 22nd of December. The Laurels Bar in the heart of the town will host a Mystical Puppeteer Show at 4pm on the 15th and 16th of December. Both these events are free.
You could also take the kids to Buddies Christmas Party, which takes place at its exciting playcentre on the 7th, 14th and 21st of December.
Christmas isn’t the same without a Christmas pantomime and this year there’s two on in Killarney. Don’t miss the opportunity to take the family to see the timeless children’s classic ‘Peter Pan‘ at the INEC Gleneagle Hotel from the 7th-14th December. From the 27th -30th of December, world renowned Russian ice stars will perform ‘Beauty and the Beast on Ice’, a spectacular show for all the family to enjoy.
The festival will also bring with it the ever-popular open air Christmas Markets, which add a real Christmas atmosphere to the town. Browse the stalls and you’ll come across anything from local craft products to some savoury delights – you might even pick up some stocking-fillers!
Go to the Market Cross in the town centre if you want to be entertained by some Dancing at the Crossroads (6-8pm, 22nd Dec) and the Friary Folk Group, who will sing Christmas carols between 2.30 and 3.30pm on Christmas Eve.
The festival also has lots of activities to get you out and about this Christmas like a Charity Golf Event (29th Dec) and lots of guided walks through the beautiful Killarney National Park. Different walks depart on different days but here is a choice of what you can do: Mangerton & Punchbowl Walk, Tomies Oak Walk, Muckross and Dinis Walk, Derrycunnihy to Kate Kearney’s Walk, the Demesne and Ross Walk or the Mangerton Woodland Walk. Most of the walks are free of charge.
And if you haven’t had enough, the Christmas in Killarney Festival will also feature some art exhibitions, a fashion show, a Christmas craft and food fair and lots of live music events in bars all over the town.
For some evening entertainment check out the Irish National Events Centre (INEC) where acts like Keith Barry, Thin Lizzy and Dionne Warwick will perform during the festival.
There’s no better way of getting into the spirit of Christmas, so this December, visit Killarney and enjoy the ‘build up’, the excitement, the magic and the family fun.
This is a popular Christmas festival with families from near and far who come to savour the real spirit of Christmas, so our advice is to book your accommodation early. We’ve got hotels, guesthouses, B&Bs and self catering accommodation in Killarney, so book now.
Have you been to the Christmas In Killarney Festival? We would love to hear what you thought of it! Leave your comment in the box below. We also welcome any questions or queries that you may have.