Getting cozy in Killarney & the Gap of Dunloe

Getting cozy in Killarney & the Gap of Dunloe

Killarney, Ireland

Enter: Killarney, Ireland a vibrant little town in County Kerry

Where to begin? Hoping aboard an incredibly cheap RyanAir flight (60E pp) to Kerry, our first stop in Killarney set the tone with our maiden voyage to the land of leprechauns. Killarney is everything you could hope for in an Irish town – bustling with restaurants and shops, flags and hanging signs waving above the cobbled streets, locals and tourists slurping down Guinness in the pubs.

Killarney, IrelandKillarney, Ireland
Killarney, Ireland
Killarney, IrelandKillarney, Ireland

We booked a room at the convenient and cozy Arbutus Hotel, just off the main drag and with what would undoubtedly be one of the best hotel breakfasts I’ve ever had in my life!

Killarney, Ireland
Killarney, IrelandKillarney, IrelandKillarney, IrelandKillarney, Ireland

…I’m serious. If I could pass out samples of their hot scones, fresh omelettes or melt-in-your-mouth french toast I would! So for now you’ll just have to settle on these pictures.

Killarney, Ireland
Killarney, Ireland
Killarney, Ireland

Few words were passed between Dan and I as we dug into our feast. I’m not sure whether the best part was that it was complimentary or bottomless.

Killarney, Ireland
Killarney, Ireland
Killarney, Ireland
Killarney, Ireland

After our feast, we hopped in the car and scooted over to the Gap of Dunloe in Killarney National Park. The Gap is a narrow pass about 7 miles long between (get this) Macgillycuddy’s Reeks and Purple Mountain. Both mountains sound like their from a storybook and I love it.

Killarney, Ireland

The best way to explore the Gap of Dunloe? Via trap and pony! Local farmers subsidize their income by providing these rides up and down the Gap.

Dan and I grabbed coffees from a Kate Kearney’s cottage before climbing aboard. The steaming drink instantly cut the chill as we got to chatting with our friendly guide. Around us the mountains slowly started to close in.

Killarney, IrelandKillarney, Ireland
Killarney, Ireland

Riding the Gap of Dunloe takes about a two hours roundtrip with stops for pictures. Passing 7 small to midsize ponds en route, it is unbelievably pretty.

Killarney, Ireland
Killarney, Ireland
Killarney, Ireland
Killarney, Ireland

Our chatty guide owns a farm nearby and takes tourists on trap and pony rides to subsidize his income.

Killarney, Ireland
Killarney, Ireland
Killarney, Ireland
Killarney, Ireland
Killarney, Ireland
Killarney, Ireland
Killarney, Ireland
Killarney, Ireland
Killarney, Ireland
Killarney, Ireland
Killarney, Ireland
Killarney, Ireland

Maybe you can see why I made the Gap a priority? The green mossy hillsides, lakes and winding road are breathtakingly picturesque. If the quantity of pictures I took is any indicator, I loved it.

Think this is something you’d enjoy OR would you be back in pub sipping beer? 😀

  • ah! this looks like an absolute dream. ireland has some of the most incredible landscapes!

    Little Blue Backpack

    • I agree – it really does! For such a small country it has quite a big reputation, and so well deserved too! You know?

  • I want to be you! Where can my husband get a job in Europe??!!

    • Ha – well, it’s actually my job that brought us here, which you could get too! 😀 Check out overseas assignments with your company, you never know!

      • Oops sorry-got you confused with another blogger I follow (blush)

        • Ha… if I have a nickel for the amount of times I’ve done that too. #theresalotofus 😀

  • Christine

    I love how scraggly and rough the hills are. You really capture the atmosphere of the area.

    http://awayfromthesafeharbor.blogspot.com/2014/12/a-hazy-day-on-beach.html

    • Thanks so much my dear! it is such a unique landscape isn’t it? 🙂

  • This was such an amazing post! Probably one of my favorites! Gaw… some of the photos were just insane! I gotta get there ASAP!

    • gehh, well thank you miss! ireland’s your neighbor so i’m sure you’ll be there soon enough!

  • These pictures, stunning! Looks like you just visited a fairytale!

    • Now that you say that, I think you’re right. A fairytale with great accents and beer. 😀

      Enjoy the US! Eat some chipotle for me!

  • emi

    This is so so amazing I can’t even believe it! Going here for sure one day!! 🙂

    xo welltraveledwife.com

    • ahh, wonderful! you will absolutely, positively, love every second of it!

  • Absolutely gorgeous! It looks like a pony ride is the way to go – better to soak up that atmosphere and take pictures than a car!

    • Yes, exactly! I used to horseback ride when I was younger so it was fun just to spend a little time with a horse again, which sounds rather odd to say, but I think you get the jest.

      “so it was fun just to spend a little time with a horse again” oh my, I’m a nut. ha.

  • The reflective pictures are amazing!! This looks completely magical. And gotta love those cheap flights!!

    • I know, seriously. What would we do without RyanAir? I just love how easy it is to get around Europe. We’re very lucky gals aren’t we?

  • I love love love all these photos! And that food looks heavenly!!!

    • (blussssh) – thanks my dear!

  • Wow, gorgeous pictures! Looks like such a nice trip… especially with trap & pony! If I ever make it to Ireland, I will for sure be outside all the time seeing the sites and not in a pub 🙂

    • There you go! I think I’m in the exact same boat! Though I must admit, I have a thing for Guinness. Not sure why but I love it. 🙂

  • this is adorable! makes me want to go! great photos too

    p.s I love your lay-out

    • Thanks so much! I agree, Killarney is absolutely precious…for lack of a better word. 🙂

  • …It’s just like a storybook!!…

  • I would love to go there! Another reason for me to visit Ireland.

  • Lindsey Chapman Chiasera

    Just discovered The Overseas Escape! So glad I did! I am heading to do the Ring of Kerry in April and I have gathered some great tips 🙂
    – Lindsey @ Flat34.com