The Ring of Kerry & Gap of Dunloe.
The Ring of Kerry & Gap of Dunloe. Reviews
The Best Road Trip EVER! Nov 15, 2010
We rented a car from BUDGET, and got a Ford Focus. It was a car that consumes A LOT of fuel, thus I wouldn't consider this as a 'cheap' but average road trip. It is best to go by an economical car.
Make sure you start off with a FULL tank and early in the morning around 9/10AM. Have a skilled driver because I must say, when you enter the Gap of Dunloe terrain, it isn't going to be proper roads and WIDE. They're going to be narrow and if it is rainy, becareful too. I was lucky that my boyfriend handled the roads and this car well. Even though he had to keep telling me that he's on the WRONG side of the car and everyone drives on the wrong side of the road. The gear was a little difficult to handle for him, lets say it was slightly cranky.
Anyway, we used a GPS and also a map to guide and we were planning to do the Ring of Kerry that day. We were leaving Killarney on the route N71 and then head for N72. You just have to make sure you're on N72 and then I noticed the sign, Gap of Dunloe. I thought of going there and my guy was like, 'if you want to go there, we could...you just tell me where you want to go and we'll go there.' Awww...what a sweet and nice guy :D
Well, we decided to go to the Gap of Dunloe where all the mountains were, we followed the signs and came across the old-ruined roofless millhouse. You will just have to follow the roadsigns for Gap of Dunloe. You will see a jaunting area and Kate Kearney's Cottage but continue driving upwards. It is alright to drive but be aware that the roads are going to be narrow. You just got to know what to do when there's a vehicle coming towards you.
Driving along in the Gap of Dunloe is amazing! I had seen countless of rainbows...how it appeared and disappeared. It was a slight drizzle/shower with sun! Beautiful and breath-taking sights. Sheep everywhere and I was awed by how they could climb so high up those steep and rocky mountains. You will drive along this river and over it onto this bridge which will lead you to ruined buildings on both sides of the road. You will soon find yourself driving on Derrycarna. We wanted to explore and got off the main road and was on Cloghermoosh, where there was a lake (Cummeenduff Lough) and isolated houses here and there.
You would start to wonder, how do they do their groceries? Perhaps they would go out and do a month worth of grocery. Maybe they have a fridge/freezer installed in the car so they could put the ice cream in there. Just a funny thought.
Anyway, we decided to turn back and head for the main road and drove on route R568. From there you can head back to the road N70 where you could head for the Valentia Island. Yes, it is an island! You'll have to drive on the bridge and the island isn't too far away from the mainland. If you would like to have dinner, you could head for QC's in Cahirsiveen (did a review on that). VERY expensive so it is your decision if you would like to dine there BUT you could check out other places to dine in Cahirsiveen (there are other eateries opened). Well, continue your journey on N70 and finally pass Killorglin, from there move to route N72 and you'll be back at Killarney.
Things to take note:
- The Ring of Kerry is actually on the Iveragh Peninsula.
- You can take route N71 and then move to R568 which would lead to N70. You will complete a round finishing your last route on N72 heading for Killarney.
- Start off your journey in the morning as you will end the day at night that is IF you choose to add Gap of Dunloe into your road trip as well. Or else, you do end your road trip earlier.
- Bring your GPS along
- Not just a GPS (if you have it) but ALSO a MAP!
- Have a full tank
- Skilled and careful/alert driver
- Come AFTER summer time to avoid those tour buses (we went from 21st October to 26th October 2010) so, it wasn't crowded.
- Bring a camera.
- Bring some water to drink.
- Enjoy yourself.
My ending note, I love the two road trips...Iceland's (tried to do the Golden Circle) and Ireland's (Ring of Kerry, including Gap of Dunloe). I enjoyed my schatje's driving in Ireland, I must admit because he was happy to speed on those narrow roads. Yup, he was rather pleased to see those speed limit signs which he couldn't believe such as 80 and 100 on those narrow roads. It was thrilling but he drove with care :) Like a funny saying from him, 'Never mind the car, it is insured but what matters is bringing us back safe and sound.' - Not the exact words but it was something like that :D
If you're in Kerry, my advise to you is check out Gap of Dunloe and continue your Ring of Kerry journey. Gap of Dunloe will just let you be amazed with the nature of Kerry.
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