If you are heading to the South-West of Ireland , then a tour of the magnificent Dingle Peninsula is a must. This rugged and beautiful corner of Ireland is host to a myriad of activities, from walking & hiking to breathtaking day trips..
One of Ireland’s top tourist hot-spots, the Dingle Peninsula was included by Tripadvisor as one of the top twenty world destinations in 2008. Here is a small sample of what is in store for those who wish to travel to this corner of the Emerald Isle.
Walking/Hiking: For the walking enthusiast, the Dingle Peninsula offers variety and amazing scenery on all its routes and walking trails. Traffic poses no problem as most routes are along small, quiet country roads, many winding around lush green hills and cliff-tops. The popular Dingle Way stretches for 179km and can take a reasonably fit adult 8-9 days to walk. The landscape on this walk is very diverse, taking in the Peninsula’s most scenic areas. From the foothills of Slieve Mish to Slea Head, The Dingle Way is certainly a challenging but fun walk for young and old alike. The walk starts and finishes in Tralee, completing a circuit of the Dingle peninsula.
Equestrian : The landscape of the region makes an ideal setting for a horseriding holiday on The Dingle Peninsula . Many equestrian centres cater for riders of all levels, with one hour treks to six day post to post trail rides available.
Adventure: If you have a head for heights, call to the Play at Height adventure centre, and enjoy outdoor freefall , zipwire, the climbing wall (indoor activity ideal for a rainy day) and abseiling. This popular activity centre is an ideal visit for both adults and children.
Eating Out : Well renowned for its gastronomical delights, Dingle is host to many fine restaurants and eateries. Near the small village of Ballydavid is the ever popular Gormans Clifftop House and Restaurant . Diners can enjoy panoramic views of Smerwick Harbour,with views of the Three Sisters & Sybil Head on the left and Ballydavid head to the right. In the town of Dingle, many restaurants offer a variety of dishes with seafood being especially popular. Sample some fresh locally caught lobster washed down with a pint of stout.
Tours : Some of the tours on offer in the region explore many of the historical landmarks of the Peninsula. Day trips can be arranged with local operators but should you prefer a self-drive tour, the following landmarks should not be missed
Slea Head Drive: Probably the most rugged part of the Peninsula, Slea Head looks out over the Atlantic ocean with amazing views of The Blasket Islands.
Blasket Islands: Inhabited until 1953, this group of islands lies to the west of Slea Head and was home to some of Ireland’s greatest literary figures.
Conor Pass: The highest mountain pass in Ireland, you will be treated to spectacular views from the top of Brandon Bay.
Sceilig Rock: Monastic settlement in the Atlantic just south of the Great Blasket Island. Boat trips are available to the rock from April to September each year.