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Discover the Ring of Kerry’s coastal towns and villages by bike, cycling from Cahersiveen to Killarney.
Starting out in the historic town of Killarney, a private transfer will take you to one of Ireland’s most westerly coastal towns, Cahersiveen. Begin with a loop ride through the colourful harbour villages of Valentia Island where you can sample fresh, local, Portmagee crab. Leaving Cahersiveen, cycle through the rolling Kerry countryside to the vast and pristine beach at Rossbeigh.
Another roll inland heads along the northern shore of Lough Caragh and via Kilorglin before arriving into Killarney. Here, ride through the native woodland of Killarney National Park where you can visit the 15th century Ross Castle and famous Muckross House. In the evening, explore the pubs of Killarney and enjoy a bowl of Irish stew with a well earned pint of Guinness.
The thriving hub and gateway town to Ireland’s finest lakes and mountain scenery, Killarney, can be easily reached by train from Dublin in around 3 hours or Cork in 1hr 30mins.
From Killarney, you will be met and transferred to laid back town of Cahersiveen (1 hour journey). Located on the Ring of Kerry, Cahersiveen is a delightful town to explore. Birthplace of Daniel O’Connel, the Irish political leader, you can visit the 19th century church built in memorial to Daniel or take a stroll down to the beach. After visiting the bike rental shop for your fitting, sample local seafood dishes, such as Dingle prawns.
Today, take a short ride to Reenard Point, after a visit to the bike rental shop if you didn't have time yesterday. A quick ferry hop (10min crossing) transfers you to the 19th century fishing village of Knightstown at the eastern tip of Valentia Island. From here, ride west to discover the charms and fascinating history of Valentia. Discover the 360 million year old tetrapod tracks, visit the 18th century Glanleam House (formerly a linen mill) or take a boat tour (no landing), to view the Skellig Islands. Rising out of the Atlantic, these sheer rock formations made the perfect setting for a Jedi Temple in the recent Star Wars films. Before heading back to Cahersiveen, be sure to try the famous Portmagee Crab in one of Knightstown’s cafes.
Heading inland, the first half of today’s ride cycles through country lanes with views of Kell Mountain to the west and Bee Hill to the east. Joining the Ring of Kerry for a short section, you will soon head back onto country roads for a panoramic descent into Rossbeigh. Less than 5km from your overnight stay of Glenbeigh, it’s worth hopping off the bikes for a stroll along the beach and maybe a refreshing dip of the feet.
An easy going ride this morning passes by the northern shores of Lough Caragh and to Kilorglin, home of Ireland’s oldest ’Puck Fair’. Legend has is that, that while English Roundheads were pillaging the countryside, a goat (puck) broke away from it’s herd and arrived on the banks of the River Laune in Kilorglin, alerting inhabitants of the imminent danger. A special fair was then created in the goat’s honour.
Beyond Killorglin a straightforward cycle heads into the heart of Killarney where you will spend the next 2 nights.
Today is an optional ride. You can choose to explore Killarney and it’s National Park on foot or enjoy a ride along the shores of Lough Leane stopping off to visit the 15th century Ross Castle, built by the O’Donoghue clan. Cycle around Muckross Lake (where you may spot red deer) and visit Muckross House, built in 1843 for the Kerry MP Henry Herbert. Return to Killarney’s lively streets for a pint of Guinness and traditional slow cooked Irish stew.
Depending on your onward travel plans, you may like to further explore Killarney, or add extra nights to further explore Kerry’s lakes and mountains.
During this trip you will stay in family run B&B’s and a 3* hotel. Depending on the time of year you are travelling, you may be accommodated in a hotel or inn of equal standard, within the surrounding area. Examples of some of the typical hotels and B&B's used on this tour are listed below. All overnight stays are based on a standard room.
On this tour you may like to add stay an
extra night in Killarney. If you would like to add extra nights at any of the
overnight stays on this tour, please let us know.
A boutique townhouse, this 3* hotel is located in the heart of Cahersiveen. Owners, Andrew and Kate have created contemporary rooms with homely charm. The hotel restaurant is the best place in town to dine, serving fresh seafood dishes, including famous Dingle prawns.
A charming family run lodge in the seaside village of Glenbeigh. Bright, spacious room makes for a comfortable stay and your hosts are familiar with needs for guests travelling by bike. With views of Rossbeigh Beach and Seefin Mountain, the lodge is an ideal stay on your journey through Kerry.
Maggie O’s is a luxurious bed and breakfast located in a quiet, and peaceful area just a five minute stroll from Killarney town centre. Contemporary rooms are comfy and spacious and there is also a guest lounge (with roaring open fire in the cooler months). Owner, Margaret Casey, is always on hand to tell you about Killarney's famous attractions.
You can start your cycling adventure on any day from mid-April through to the end of September. This region of Ireland is particularly busy over the summer months, so if you are planning on travelling between June and August, it's probably wise to confirm your dates as soon as possible.
2018 departures are available from Saturday 11th August onwards. 2019 departures begin Mid-April.
Graded easy to moderate, the cycling routes head along country and coastal lanes. You will experience some busier sections along the Ring of Kerry and when passing through towns and villages, so please do be mindful of other road users at all times. You will also enjoy some short sections on cycleways or cycle paths, but these are shared with other users.
The detailed routes notes and maps are easy to follow during your self-guided adventure and we also supply GPX tracks via our easy to use Macs Adventure Navigation App, which make for an easy paper free ride. Please always pay attention to the advice on your navigation app and route notes provided.
Should you require assistance, local 24/7 telephone support will also be available throughout your trip.
If you wish to bring your own bike, please let us know at the time of booking as extra transfers for your own bikes from Killarney to Cahersiveen might be required.
Trek FX hybrid bikes are available to rent. Each bike comes with a rear pannier bag for your personal possessions, basic repair kit and a lock. Helmets are included, although your own is likely to be a better fit. Ebikes are also available to hire, as are Trek Road road bikes.
If you would prefer to bring your own bicycle please ensure it is thoroughly serviced and is an appropriate bike for this tour.
If you do intend to bring your own bike, please do let us know at the time of booking as extra transfer arrangements may be required for any large bike cases/boxes.
All bike tours are unescorted. The distances listed are approximations of the recommended routes.
Please be prepared by packing all necessary items, for example, cycle clothing and personal medications etc.
It is a requirement of booking this tour
with Macs Bike that you have suitable Travel Insurance which covers you
for the activity, emergency evacuation and hospital care.
For general travel planning, we recommend the helpful site www.rome2rio.com
Kerry Airport is served by a small number of airlines is only a 25 minute bus journey from Killarney
For a wider range of flight connections across Europe and North America, Cork, Shannon and Dublin Airports connect with Killarney via bus or train.
Cork Airport shuttle bus is a 20min journey to Cork Kent train station. Train services to Killarney are around 1hr30mins.
From Shannon Airport take a bus (approx. 2h50-3h40, via Limerick) to Killarney
Dublin Airport shuttle bus connects through to the Dublin Heuston Station in 20mins. Direct train services from here, reach Killarney in around 3hrs.
If you are planning to drive to Kerry, please let us know at the time of booking so we can best advise on parking options.
Being an active traveller, you’ll be happy to be in the saddle covering distances of up to 40km. Each ride usually encompasses, flat coastal stretches, rolling Irish countryside and sections of cycling through busier environments. It’s always a good idea to get out on your bike in the lead up to this tour so you are used to cycling back to back days.
We suggest you book as soon as your plans are finalised as Kerry is extremely popular over the summer months, June through to August.
Our pre-departure information pack has detailed advice and a kit list on what to take. If you have any questions about what to take then we’d be happy to share our own top tips and advice.
Ireland has a temperate climate with warm summers. April into May, lambs bounce through the fields and the flora is in bloom. Into summer (June-August) you can appreciate long hours of daylight where you are more than likely to encounter a musical festival or two. Summer days can very often spill into September but have the advantage of the crowds beginning to thin.
No matter what month you choose to travel, being close to the Atlantic Coast means the weather can get wet and windy at anytime of year, so always bring a rain jacket!
We use local taxis to transfer your baggage so it is possible they might
be able to also help you move to your next overnight stop if you do not
want to cycle. Local buses can also sometimes take bikes.