Things to do on the Dingle Peninsula
Posted by Niamh Allabyrne on the 14th of November 2012 at 16:10:19
The Dingle Peninsula is one of the most beautiful spots in Ireland. It really should be on everyone’s bucket list - a truly magical place! To help you plan your trip to this breath-taking area, I have put together some of my favourite things to see and do on the Dingle Peninsula. Enjoy!
Visit Fungi: In 1984, a young bottle-nosed dolphin started to appear at the mouth of Dingle Harbour and has remained in Dingle ever since becoming both a friend to the locals and a great “attraction” for visitors. You can “meet” Fungi by taking one of the regular boat trips which leave from the top of the pier in Dingle Town, on a 45 minute spin around the harbour and hopefully a sighting of our watery friend! For a more up close experience you can even hire a wetsuit and swim with Fungi!
Get Murphy’s Ice Cream: Another, very delicious, must-do when in Dingle, is to visit the original Murphy’s Ice Cream shop and get some (or a lot!) of their yummy ice cream! Sean and Kieran Murphy started Murphy’s Ice Cream in the town 2000, with the goal of making the best ice cream in the world. And they sure succeeded! Murphy’s Ice Cream is so good apparently because they use milk from the rare indigenous breed of local Kerry cow. Plus, they make all of their ice cream from scratch and never use preservatives, colours, mixes, powdered milk or bottled flavours. They have a rather eclectic range of flavours from the “old-school” varieties like Vanilla, Strawberry and Chocolate to some more special flavours like Irish Cream Liqueur, Fresh Peppermint, Peanut, to truly extreme flavours like Brown Bread, Pink Champagne, Sea Salt, Candied Chilli Pepper, Honey Lavender and much more! With so many flavours to choose, you may well find yourselves in Dingle for longer than you had bargained for!
Wild Kerry Day Tours –take a tour around the Dingle Peninsula with the Wild Kerry Day Tour Company! Showing you the highlights of the breath-taking peninsula in style and comfort and guided by local experts, you are guaranteed a great day with lots of laugh and some really great photo opportunities! Probably the best way to tour the tour the area and discover only those spots that the locals keep to themselves!
Discover the Blasket Islands which are situated just off the coast of Kerry at Slea Head in the wild Atlantic Oceans.My tip: Get on a ferry from Dunquin (Dún Chaoin) which brings you over to Great Blasket Island and do some serious exploring! The ferry takes around 20 minutes each way and passengers are given a set of return times which enables them to spend as long or as little time as they want exploring the island. The Blasket islands are uninhabited today as their former inhabitants were evacuated in 1953. This place is so remote and wildly beautiful that you can spend hours there just marvelling at its beauty.
Visit the Penguins at the Dingle Oceanworld Aquarium: They are not quite as famous as Fungi – but the Gentoo Penguins at the Dingle Oceanworld Aquarium are certainly making an impression! The aquarium is situated just outside of Dingle town and also hosts Ireland’s largest collection of sharks. But that’s not all, there is also an amazing Amazonian display including deadly piranhas, catfish and pacu, a touch tank where you can hold a starfish or stroke friendly Rays; and an underwater tunnel. Great fun for the little ones and not so little ones!
Go Surfing at Inch Beach: Arguably one of the coolest beaches in Ireland, Inch enjoys 3 miles of sandy beach ideal for bathing, surfing and sea angling. The countryside around Inch beach is simply stunning and was chosen by David Lean as the beach location for “Ryan’s Daughter”, while the film “Playboy of the Western World” was shot entirely at Inch. So grab your surfboard and head to Inch for the day. And if you can’t surf– no problem! There is a surfing school at the beach as well. So no excuses Dudes & Bettys!
Walk the Dingle Way: If you are into hiking, then this one is for you – the 153km circular walking trail called Dingle Way! The walk begins in Tralee, overlooking Tralee Bay, and then swings southwest across the peninsula from Camp to look down on Dingle Bay while you ramble inland to Annascaul, and then on to Dingle Town. From Dingle the route continues west around Slea Head to Dunquin, with magnificent views of the Blasket Islands to the west and beautiful coastal cliffs to the north. Then the trail turns back along the north coast of the peninsula, past Smerwick Harbour, and continues on below the massive Brandon Mountain, Ireland’s second highest peak and named for St. Brendan the Voyager. A high pass will bring you to the village of Cloghane, east of Brandon, and then the route continues along coastal beaches to Castlegregory and the Maharees, ultimately ending back in Tralee. Obviously, if you don’t feel up to it, you don’t need to do the whole thing – just pick out the most interesting / beautiful parts of the Dingle Way.
• Night out in Dingle Pubs: Last but not least – after a long day exploring, walking, surfing, chasing dolphins and penguins, you need to relax in a real Irish Pub. Dingle Town is just the right place for that! Dingle’s pubs are famous all over the world for the craic and the ceol! A good laugh with new friends is guaranteed and with delicious pints of the black stuff and first class traditional musical entertainment to awaken you Celtic soul you are surely in for a memorable night!
So have I enticed you!!?? Make sure you include Dingle on your Custom Tour of Ireland! Why don't you find out more about things to do in Kerry from our intern Julia who spent a few days with friends in this beautiful County.