Whatever takes your fancy leave your panniers at home and take advantage of our vehicles moving luggage throughout the country. We take care of large group tours as well as individuals and small parties on all the main and lesser walked or cycled routes so why not drop us a line with your plans and we’ll come back to you with a quote.
If you’re searching for inspiration check out our Kerry, Dingle and Beara suggested itineraries below. From a challenging hill climb up Connor Pass to laid back beach hopping along the northern Kerry shores there’s an itinerary out there for you waiting to be discovered.
Our itineraries are here to whet your appetite, help give you some ideas and plan a decent day in the saddle but there are loads of options to shorten the distances if you want to take things a little more leisurely and far more attractions than we can hope to mention so get yourself a map, guide and get youself out there!
THE KERRY BEACHCOMBER
Stage 1 – Listowel to Tralee – 52km
A lovely flat stage to get your legs in order. Head out from Listowel in the direction of Ballybunion, if the R553 is too busy then take any of the quieter country lanes via Lisselton. From here you’ll be catching glimpses of the Dingle peninsular until you get the full-on view at Ballyheigue and Banna strand. Take in the 6th century ruined cathedral at Ardfert before powering on to days end and the practical town on Tralee.
Stage 2 – Tralee to Dingle – 47km
A reasonably short stage but a dramatic one. Crossing out of Tralee and past the windmill at Blennerville hope the wind is in your favour for the dramatic climb that is Connor pass. 10km of climb to a 400m summit and (fingers crossed!) views to die for, if you manage to make the climb without stopping you might well feel like you’re dying but you can give yourself a pat on the back as you cruise down into Dingle for the evening. There is the option to have an extra day taking in the western part of the peninsular (See Stage 2 text on the Dingle Weekender)
Stage 3 – Dingle to Killorglin – 53km
After taking in a dolphin tour and explored the possibility of a sing-a-long in a small Irish pub it’s onward to Ring of Kerry. You can explore some of the larger gears on your machine on a reasonably flat run to Annascaul before dropping down to the delights of Inch beach. After learning to surf or just taking in the view there’s a further flat stage to Catlemaine and a right turn towards Milltown and Killorglin. Those in need of a change from main roads might want to explore the smaller roads between Milltown and Killorglin via Kilburn and Callanafersy.
Stage 4 – Killorglin to Cahersiveen – 44km
There’s the option to route via Cromane beach with views back to Inch beach or stick with the main N70 but it’s a lovely flat stage to begin with today as far as Glenbeigh (check dates for the festival including the excellent horse racing on the beach) but the scenery quickly becomes a little gnarlier. The long climb will compete with the views for your attention as you climb out towards Kells and keep an eye out for the remnants of the long defunct Great Western and Southern railway which shadows the road as you gently drop into Cahersiveen. Those wishing to visit Skellig Michael may wish to push on to Portmagee.
Stage 5 – Cahersiveen to Waterville – 42km
A short day distance-wise but there are a few historic places worth visiting in Cahersiveen, Cahergall fort and the Army Barracks, as well as some pretty beaches at Ballycarbery and these can accessed easily. Afterwards head for the ferry Reenard Point and admire the vista afforded by Knightstown and Valentia Island. As well as a jumping off point for The Skelligs there are various points of interest; from the quarry that also serves as a shrine, Poulnabrone Dolmen and the ancient crosses of St Brendan’s Well. After leaving the island and Portmagee follow the Skillig Ring road whilst trying to avoid the temptation of chocolate at Skellig’s chocolate and a dip in the sea at the excellent beach at Ballinskelligs. Waterville is a handy stop, it has an annual Charlie Chaplin festival as he used to holiday here. Climbing highlight of the day is to Coomakesta where you’ll vie with buses and the odd busker but the view is worth it.
Stage 6 – Waterville to Kenmare – 61km
A great start to the day if you like your climbs with Coomakesta your target. You’ll vie with tourist buses for the best view although even the best camera will struggle to take in the magnificence of it all. As you head to Caherdaniel anyone who’s not had their fill of fantastic powder-like sand beaches should head for Derrynane which is one of the peninsular’s best. The flora and fauna here is ever so slightly tropical on the south side of the peninsular and Sneem makes an ideal stop for an ice cream, every shop seems to sell the home-made variety so it would be churlish not to indulge. From here you can crank up the gears on the low road on the N70 into fabulous Kenmare or those not quite finished with the climbing could consider going via Moll’s Gap via the R658.
THE DINGLE WEEKENDER
Although we’ve named this a ‘weekender’ please don’t feel pressured to do this on a weekend, the roads can be much quieter during the week!
Stage 1 – Tralee to Dingle – 47km
Crank up the gears as you power out of Tralee, past the windmill at Blennerville and head for the mountains on the Dingle peninsular. Connor Pass awaits and at 400 metres above sea level and a 10km climb up it you’ll feel like master of all you survey once you reach the summit. The final kilometre is single track with sheer cliffs to the left and breathtaking views to the right. Stunning stuff. There’s time for a pit stop at the top before the cruise into Dingle and a celebratory beverage.
Stage 2 – Dingle to Dingle – 52km
Cameras at the ready as you set off around the end of the peninsular. The beach at Ventry will be attaching itself to your memory card quickly followed by the ancient stone fort at Dunbeg and the beehive huts. The road gets progressively narrower up to Slea Head for yet more dramatic views with the waters of Coumeenoole beach attracting your attention along with the Blasket Islands. From dramatic scenery to out-and-out lovely as you head to Smerwick Harbour, the Gallarus Observatory and a ride alongside Mt Brandon as you head back to Dingle.
Stage 3 – Dingle to Tralee – 60km
Afix your aero bars, get your Go Pros and speed guns ready as this is a fast stage to complete a fantastic weekend (or consective three days!). The straight section between Ballintaggart and Lispole will have you finding your higher gears and practising your drafting skills. Right turn to Inch and Inch beach just before Annascaul and this excellent stretch of sand is a great place to stop for lunch, the chowder goes down particularly well here. From here hit the fast roads back to Tralee via Castlemaine or try the empty back roads from Boolteens via Laharn for a get away from it all finish.
RING OF KERRY WEEKENDER
Stage 1 – Killarney to Sneem – 46km (58km via Kenmare)
Start your long weekend (Or three day cycling trip if you’re not doing this over a weekend!) by heading out of Killarney towards Kenmare. Take in the National Park along the banks of Upper Lake, you might want to build in time to visit Muckross House, and take in the breathtaking scenery to Moll’s Gap. Moll’s Gap is a great place to take a break and ponder your best route to Sneem. The route shown here heads down the much quieter R568 to Sneem and those wishing to hammer down the miles with very little traffic will enjoy this and those wishing to enjoy the scenery of Kenmare Bay should head down the busier N70.
Stage 2 – Sneem to Cahersiveen – 78km
Coomakesta Pass will get the blood pumping first thing but your exertions will be worth it as you take in the views and lush scenery as you drop into Caherdaniel. If the weather is fine head to Derrynane beach for a quick dip in the sea and enjoy the fine powdery sand between your toes. Waterville’s variety of eating places make it a great place to stop for lunch, check your dates for the annual Charlie Chaplin festival and pack your walking stick. Otherwise it’s onward for more impromptu stops to admire the view as you head round to Portmagee. Those wishing to visit the World Hetitage site of The Skelligs may wish to take day’s end here otherwise explore Valentia Island’s historic past: St Brendan’s well, the Slate quarry and Knightstown are all worth a stop. Take the ferry at Reenard Point to head into Cahersiveen for your overnight stop.
Stage 3 – Cahersiveen to Killarney – 65km
Take in the excellently preserved Old Barracks of the Royal Irish constabulary and Cahergall stone fort situated just outside the town of Cahersiveen for a history fix and to warm up your legs before a fast day in the saddle. The N70 to Kells and Glenbeigh represent the only significant climb of the day. Lunch can easily be taken in Killorglin, there’s an excellent salmon smokery on the riverbank if you plan to have a pic-nic, after the flat roads from Glenbeigh and from here you can head into Killarney with a smile as broad as a Cheshire Cat. Anyone wishing to fulfill their polka dot jersey urges may wish to take on the Gap of Dunloe and Black Valley before hitting the bright lights of Killarney.
Bonus mountain stage – Glenbeigh to Sneem via Ballaghbeama Pass – 49km
For those of you who generally see their cycling through red polka dot sun visors you might wish to shoehorn in this little beauty of a stage. Almost 50 kilometres of mountain climbing heaven, not to mention killer views, from Glenbeigh to Sneem or vice versa if you’re one of those subversive types, via the Ballaghbeama Pass (285m).
Our map sends you out of Glenbeigh back towards Killorglin but not for long as you make the escape from the Ring of Kerry traffic and head for Treanmanagh, taking the climb for fabulous views back over to the Dingle peninsular. Drop down to Lough Caragh and take a right turn to Gortreagh towards Glencar. Take in stunning views of Carrauntoohil, Ireland’s highest mountain, and the Reeks at Lickeen Wood then head for a break at the Climbers Inn.
From the Climbers Inn it’s onto the Pass and 18 kilometres before you hit the R568 at Gearha South. After 10 kilometres you’ll be at the summit and in that time you’ll be climbing 200 metres. The incline slowly increases over the first nine kilometres, climbing 100 metres, the mountains Beann Dubh and Beann Bhan rising to your right will keep you company. The second hundred metres come in the final kilometre. You’ll climb a rocky gulley, the vertical sides getting ever closer as you reach the summit. Belligerent sheep, refusing to move from your path, will do their best to substitute for spectators and you’ll swear your name was written back there on the road as you reach the summit.
Reflect on an epic climb as you zoom down to Sneem for the local home-made delicacy, ice cream. Dramatic vistas and swooping lanes await but you’ll still be thinking back to the pass, we don’t blame you.
THE BEARA CIRCUIT
Stage 1 – Kenmare to Allihies – 73km
Get your gnarly hats on for this tough but rewarding day in the saddle. A farewell to the town on Kenmare leads from lush forest and patchwork fields to the more stark landscape of rock escarpments and stunning sea views. After lunching in Lauragh or Ardgroom the option is there to explore the headland around Droumbeg and Dreenacush or push on to Allihies if you feel the need to save your legs. As you head round on to the westernmost part of the peninsular the road becomes twisty with sudden, steep roads with the Atlantic on your right, the scenery is some the best you’ll see in Ireland. Watch out for the abandoned copper mines as you head to Allihies for some well-deserved refreshment, there’s a visitor centre for more information on this forgotten industry.
Stage 2 – Allihies to Glengarriff – 52km
There’s a small reminder of the climbs from yesterday with a quick climb over the Bealbarnish Gap but don’t forget to check over the shoulder for great views over Ballydonegan Bay. If you’re not tempted by Ireland’s only cable car over to Dursey Island then you might want to consider Dunboy Castle, accessed via the ruined gatehouse just off the main road into Castletownbere. The bustling fishing port of Castletownbere is a great place to stop for a break or lunch before heading onward. Hungry Hill looms over from this point but the road is flat in the main allowing you to try out your higher gear range before hitting Glengarriff.
Stage 3 – Glengarriff to Kenmare – 27km
There are various attractions in Glengarriff, from the traditional Irish music in the Blue Loo to the nature reserve on the edge of town, not to mention Garinish Island but the object of the day is to climb. Don your polka dot jersey for a 9km climb to 325 metres as you take a tunnel driven through the rock to emerge back into Kerry. Take a photo or two if the weather is clear and maybe drop into one of the oddest placed chocolate shops you’ll come across in Bonane before heading into Kenmare for a late lunch and refreshments.
Bonus Mountain Stage – Kenmare to Castletownbere – 64km
The Beara way is just as adept at providing it’s own mountain like challenges. The gradient may not be the most severe but it is constant and the Col de Galibier-esque descent from the summit will have you whooping with delight. And the views are just stunning so our challenge to you is to do it without stopping for a photo. It just means you get to do it again,
A route so big we had to use two maps and even then we couldn’t fit it all in. We suggest you start your day out in Kenmare, making good use of the facilites or as part of your long distance itinerary.
Take the R571 in the direction of Tuosist. It’s a fast, flat road and ideal for getting the legs in orderm lush greenery soon leads to fabulous views across Kenmare Bay. The road slowly meanders inland and after a few more glimpses of the bay it heads towards Tuosist. The next water you’ll come across is the Cloonee river followed by the Cloonee Loughs. Keep with the R571 to afford higher views over the peninsular and there’s a ‘warm up’ climb after inches to 196m before dropping down to Lauragh, at this point you’ll be 24kms into your journey.
The pass proper starts on the R574, a left turn just before heading into the tiny village of Lauragh although there is the option to ride into the village for some refreshment at Pedals and Boots. Back on the road up the pass you go past An Sibin pub (Careful now!) before the long climb up over Glanmore Lake. There’s no serious finish to the climb just the long slow grind. Oh, and views. Stunning views.
There’s a brilliantly placed souvenir shop just over the peak of the pass and a great place for you to take in the downhill section which looks like it stretches on forever. Feel free to whoop as you take in the fast straights and hairpin bends because before you know it you’ll be in Adrigole.
From Adrigole it’s a fabulous flat 24k into Castletownbere but you’ll be too busy wondering if you should go back and do it all again to notice.