Kerry Way Short Break

5 Days & 4 Nights 4.4 Read 27 reviews
  • Walk from the bustling city of Killarney to Glenbeigh along the Kerry Way
  • Jaw-dropping views to Muckross Lake and Lough Leane from Torc Mountain
  • Enjoy lively Irish music and the ‘craic’ of authentic old-world pubs
  • Vistas of the Dingle Peninsula from Windy Gap
  • Have a packed lunch with a view in the fresh mountain air
Experience the raw, unspoilt beauty of Ireland while walking part of the enchanting Kerry Way, Ireland's longest waymarked footpath. This route takes in a variety of landscapes, from some of the most photogenic parts of Killarney National Park to crossing remote glens and walking on peaceful lakeside paths surrounded by mountain scenery. Although the Iveragh Peninsula is home to the highest mountains in Ireland, the Kerry Way is largely a low-level inland route. This classic national trail is a must for anyone who wishes to discover the real flavour of Ireland.
This 5-day itinerary on the Kerry Way is perfect for those with a little less time and with an interest in exploring some of the most photogenic parts of Killarney National Park and the first sections of this national trail. If you would like to see some of Ireland's most dramatic mountain scenery on a generally low-level walk, then this is the trip for you. You will get a real flavour of Irish culture while staying in beautiful and remote places. The itinerary has been graded easy to moderate, with a moderate first walk to Glencar to bring you to the heart of rural Ireland. Tip! This trip is easily combined with the neighbouring Dingle Peninsula and our Beara Way itineraries.

Tour Type:

Classic Routes | If you’re the active, outdoorsy type, who’s interested in taking on the great routes of the world or looking for a challenge, then our Classic Routes are for you. We’re talking the West Highland Way, Tour Du Mont Blanc and the Passau to Vienna Danube Cycle Path, to name but a few!


Inn to Inn Walking | Walk from place-to-place changing accommodations each night. Generally staying in B&B’s, inns, and guesthouses.

This trip is suitable for:

Solo Travellers

As a guide, we would suggest that the minimum age of traveler this tour would be suitable for is: 15 Years

Ideal if you have an interest in:

  • Long-Distance Trails
  • Short Break
  • National Parks

Activity Level & Terrain

This Kerry Way walking trip is graded easy to moderate with the exception of a more moderate walk to Glencar on Day 2 (21km) which can be completed at your own pace. The last two walks a more gentle with distances between 12-14km. It is advisable to do several longer walks to build up your fitness before setting off on any section of the Kerry Way. If you would like to have some flexibility it is possible to add some additional rest days, please let us know if this is of interest.

The Kerry Way uses a variety of routes, from forest tracks, farm tracks, and paths across moorland and fields to historic old roads through villages. Overall about 35% of the Kerry Way follows tarmac roads (also known as bitumen) which is less than most Irish national trails. This reflects the fact that rights of way are almost non-existent in Ireland. The road walking is scenic and mostly along quiet lanes with little traffic, although a few short sections are along busier main roads where extra care and attention are needed. 

If you are thinking of travelling solo, please consider that mobile phone coverage may be patchy in remote areas along the trail. We also welcome small groups on the trail, ideally no bigger than 6-8 travellers due to accommodation limitations in remote areas along the Kerry Way. Booking in advance is a must!


The Kerry Way is a low-level walk that is waymarked throughout. Our recommended route and the general best practice is walking the Kerry Way circuit anti-clockwise. This way you start with the stages that are of modest length and by the time you encounter longer walking days, you will be well into your stride. You will be supplied with the Rucksack Readers guidebook and you will have access to the GPX tracks via the Macs Adventure smartphone app so you should have no problems following the route each day.

Please note hat depending on the time of year and recent weather, the trail may be boggy in places which could reduce your average walking speed. 


The accommodations along the Kerry Way are small and varied, you will stay in family-run B&Bs, guest houses, and hotels. A warm welcome is guaranteed as well as traditional Irish hospitality. We will always try to accommodate you at the locations that are detailed in the itinerary, but this may sometimes be difficult due to limited availability. Some of the overnight locations are in remote valleys and for this reason, we might sometimes have to accommodate you elsewhere. If this is the case, you will always receive directions to and from the trail in your route notes or in some cases, return transfers from the path. Please be aware that this may result in slightly longer or shorter walking days. 

We will be happy to accommodate your party with single rooms if requested and this trip is also available to solo walkers.


A hearty breakfast is included each morning. Lunch and dinner are not included so you are free to choose from the available options. Most of your accommodations will more than happy to provide a packed lunch on request and this can be booked on arrival. Alternatively, you can buy lunch at local shops or stop in a café. Dinner is available either at your accommodation or at nearby pubs or restaurants.

  • 4 Nights in en suite rooms
  • Door-to-door baggage transfers
  • Transfer from Killarney to Black Valley (Day 3)
  • A detailed information pack with guidebook and maps
  • Access to the GPS tracks via the Macs Adventure smartphone app
  • 24/7 Emergency telephone support in the event of any issues
  • Travel to the start or from the finish of the walk
  • Lunches, dinners, snacks and drinks
  • Travel Insurance
  • Personal Equipment
  • Taxi transfers or public transport should you need to skip a stage
  • Extra nights before, during and after your walk.

When To Go

Weather and Climate

Irish weather is typically unpredictable year-round so be prepared for any conditions and you will be pleasantly surprised. No matter what month you choose to travel, being close to the coast and in remote valleys between mountains, means it can get wet and windy at any time of year (particularly at the start and towards the end of the season). It is important that you check the local weather forecast before setting off each day. It is safe to walk along coastal stretches in most weather, as long as you are well-prepared.

Getting to the Start

The Kerry Way conveniently start and finishes in Killarney and there are a number of different ways to get there. 

Flights are available to Kerry Airport with Ryanair from London Luton, London Stansted and Frankfurt. If you can't fly into Kerry Airport directly, there is an Aer Lingus flight between Dublin and Kerry Airport. There is a bus (25 mins) from Kerry Airport to Killarney. For bus timetables, check the website of Bus Eireann

You could also fly into Cork Airport with Aer Lingus from Bristol, London Heathrow, London Gatwick, Glasgow, Edinburgh, Manchester and Birmingham. From Cork Airport it is a short bus ride (20 mins) to Cork Kent train station, then a 1h30-2hr train ride to Killarney. For train timetables, check the website of Irish Rail.

Another option is flying into Shannon Airport with Aer Lingus from Dublin, Bristol, Manchester, London Heathrow and Birmingham, as well as Boston and New York JFK. Ryanair fly to Shannon from Liverpool and London Stansted. Air Transat fly from Toronto and US Airways fly from Philadelphia to Shannon. From Shannon Airport take a bus (approx. 2h50-3h40, via Limerick) to Killarney.

It is also possible to take a ferry from Holyhead to Dublin, please check Irish Ferries for more information.

Getting from the End

There is a direct bus connection by intercity coach between Glenbeigh (Towers Hotel) and Killarney Bus Station. Please find more information on tickets and timetables on the Bus Eireann website which has a handy travel planning tool. 

Luggage Transfer

Daily door-to-door luggage transfers are included in the price of your trip, allowing you to set off on each walk carrying a light backpack. 

At Macs Adventure we work in partnership with many luggage transfer providers who set a limit on how many bags/suitcases they will transfer per person, and also the weight of the bag/suitcase. Ninety-nine percent of the time they will only transfer one bag per person, but the allowed weight ranges from anything between 15 and 20kg per bag, depending on the tour you are taking. We do not have control over the limits that these providers set. Therefore, it is very important that you read the luggage information specific to your tour before departure. If you do not adhere to these limits there is a great possibility that you will be charged locally both for extra bags (including shopping bags or boots) and if they are too heavy. This limitation can be a challenge, especially as airlines generally have limits that are higher. However, our luggage providers have reasons for these limits (usually due to the Health and Safety of their employees) which we must respect.

On this trip, we ask you to keep your luggage to a maximum weight of 15 kilograms per item. Although most airlines have a standard baggage allowance of 23kg, we kindly ask you to distribute any excess weight over a separate bag. Please note that 2 bags per person are allowed, meaning 4 bags per couple.

General Information

The distances and ascent/descents are approximations of the recommended routes. Please be prepared by packing all necessary items, for example, proper rain gear (jackets and pants), sun hat and sunscreen. Your information pack has a detailed equipment list which includes standard walking/cycling gear such as good walking shoes or boots, warm and waterproof clothes for the cooler months and lightweight clothing for summer, and a day pack.


Your information pack has a detailed equipment list which includes standard walking gear such as good walking boots or shoes, warm and waterproof clothes, and a day pack.

Travel Insurance

It is a requirement of booking this tour with Macs Adventure that you have suitable travel insurance which covers you for the activity and emergency evacuation and hospital care.

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Day 1 Arrive Killarney Day 2 Muckross Lake & Torc Waterfall 8 miles / 12.5 km Day 3 Transfer to Black Valley. Walk to Glencar 13 miles / 21 km Day 4 Glencar to Glenbeigh 8 miles / 13.5 km Day 5 Bus to Killarney (50 min). Onward Travel

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