Kenmare, in the southeast corner of the Iveragh Peninsula in County Kerry, Southwest Ireland, is on the popular Ring of Kerry tourist route. It's one of the top tourist destinations in Ireland for the well heeled traveler and is renowned for its food. Founded in 1670 by Sir William Petty, the town finished its final design in 1775, created by William Petty-FitzMaurice, Second Earl of Shelburne, First Marquess of Landsdowne. Kenmare has kept this original design and preserved it so well, that the Tourist Board of Ireland named it Kerry's first Heritage Town.
Many different traveling resources can be utilized in Kenmare.
Several different airports can be used when traveling to Kenmare from across the ocean or from another European country. The closest airport with only a 50 minute drive to the Kenmare town is the Kerry Airport, located in Farranfore, County Kerry. At only about a 33 kilometer distance (roughly 21 miles), one can rent a car from the airport through one of the several different car rental companies, including Avis, Budget, Irish Car Rentals, and Dooley Car Rentals. Other international airports include the Cork airport, located 75 kilometers (46 miles)away in Cork, Shannon Airport (102 kilometers/63 miles), and Galway Airport (164 kilometers/101 miles).
Traveling by bus is also an inexpensive option. Bus Éireann is a useful service that has both long distance and local services. From Kerry Airport, one can take the bus to the town center or other surrounding catchments. Because Bus Éireann serves all of Ireland, the bus is a viable option to take travelers from anywhere in Ireland to Kenmare, or vice versa. Visit the website below for specific ticket prices and more information.
Once in Ireland, it is also possible to travel by train. Rail Europe offers great options to get from destination from destination. By visiting the website listed below, one can find information on ticket prices and destinations. If you have a very regimented schedule for your visit to Kenmare, it is suggested that you book a train ticket prior to travel. However, one can purchase a Rail Pass that allows you to travel without plans. This is perfect for the go-where-you-may traveler.
- Kilgarvan Motor Museum, ☏ . This family run museum offers the opportunity to view vintage and classic cars from all over the world. It opened in 1985 and is located Slaheny, Kilgarvan. Come see Rolls Royce, Bentley, Alvis, Armstrong Siddeley, and many other fascinating cars!
- Eclipse Ireland, Dromore Old, ☏ . A great way to enjoy the beauty of Kerry County is to sign up with Eclipse Ireland, an equestrian and adventure seeking center. Some of the more intense activities include falconry demonstrations and courses, raft building, rock climbing, team challenge adventures, and laser tag. For the more relaxed traveler, Eclipse Ireland offers yoga, fishing, golf, and horseback riding lessons.
- Kenmare Bay Diving, Bunaw Pier, Kilmackillogue harbour, Lauragh, ☏ , ✉ email@example.com. Diving off of the Beara Peninsula is offered for every experience level. Guests can rent equipment through Kenmare Bay Diving, learn to dive, or get their PADI (Professional association of diving instructors). Several diving locations are available for every level of diver.
- Kissane Sheep Farm, Foardal, ☏ , ✉ noel@KissaneSheepFarm.com. Run by the Kissane family for the past 150 years, the Kissane Sheep Farm opened to visitors in 2005 and is a traditional and still functioning sheep farm, complete with sheep dogs, and of course, sheep. Guests can see sheepdog demonstrations, sheep shearing demonstrations, bottle feed lambs, go hiking through the mountains, and complete a puzzle walk or treasure hunt. If feeling philanthropic, one can even "adopt" a sheep! Located on the Ring of Kerry, Kissane Sheep Farm gives the true Irish experience.
- Kenmare Lace and Design. A museum, a craft shop, a meeting place for lacemakers from around the world, and a gift shop, a stop at the Kenmare Lace and Design is worth your while. Beautiful lace is available for purchase from this world famous center for lace production, as well materials to create lace from scratch.
- The Marketplace. Every Wednesday, local products are sold at the market located on the square. Vegetables, fruits, potatoes, cheese, and bread can be purchased here.
- PF McCarthy's Pub and Restaurant, 14, Main St, ☏ . Opened in 1913, PF McCarthy's is in the heart of Kenmare. Offers traditional Irish and pub food, including a great seafood chowder.
- Ard Mullen, Henry St (in the centre of town), ☏ . Family run self catering accommodation.
- Davitts Kenmare, Henry St (in the centre of the town), ☏ . Family run bed and breakfast accommodation.
- Failte Hostel (Kenmare Fáilte Hostel), Shelbourne St (Opposite the Post Office), ☏ , ✉ firstname.lastname@example.org. Dorms and family and Double/Twin rooms en suite. Comfortable, clean and well run. Hostel open from the 1st of April to 31st of October.
- Hawthorn Lodges, Shelbourne St, ☏ , ✉ email@example.com. Family run self catering accommodation.
- Kenmarerentals.com (Jer Foley), Henry St (Located on Henry Steet in O Donnabhains Bar & Guesthouse), ☏ , ✉ firstname.lastname@example.org. Check-in: 16:00, check-out: 10:00. Self-catering holidays homes in and around Kenmare, Co. Kerry. Owner managed with different houses types. Reserve on-line or contact/e-mail owner direct for last minute deals. Houses range from 295 € to €995 per week depending on the season; shorter bookings also available.
- Whispering Pines, Bellheight (on N71 kenmare/glengarriff/bantry rd.), ☏ , ✉ email@example.com. Lovely B&B next to the center of town. Small, family run place ran by some of the nicest people in Ireland. Excellent breakfast as well. 35 to 45 including breakfast.
The area dialing code for Kenmare is 064. When calling from overseas, dial +353 64 XXXXX.
Emergency (Police, Fire Department, Ambulance):999
Kenmare Community Hospital: +353 64 41008 or +353 64 41359
Kenmare Gardai (Republic of Ireland police force): +353 64 6641177
Marine or Mountain rescue: +353 64 31222