Coastal, Mountain, and Island Hikes in Cork and Kerry

Overview

To hike Ireland’s gorgeous landscapes with our beloved Trip Leaders Con Moriarty and Ann Curran is to experience the wild and mystical side of this amazing island in ways not possible on an “ordinary” tour. We’ll explore remote Sheep’s Head Peninsula, discover the pilgrim trails of the Dingle Peninsula, boat out to Skellig Michael, and hike on Ireland’s highest peak, Corrán Tuathail (3,407'), on whose slopes Con’s family has guided for generations. Along the way, we hear tales of clans and chieftains, enjoy pub evenings, and meet artists, shepherds, and singers. Come experience days full of magic—and the spirit of Ireland.

Itinerary at a Glance

Days 1-2
Cork / Sheep’s Head Peninsula

In the lush beauty of West Cork, we enjoy a wonderful hike and a warm welcome at our country manor house. On the narrow ridge of the Sheep’s Head Peninsula, home to farmers and fishermen, our airy hike offers views at every turn, from Dunmanus Bay to Bantry Bay, as we follow ancient byways through a labyrinth of tiny field systems, along intricate shorelines, and above cliffs.

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Days 3-5
Beara Peninsula / Killarney National Park / Skellig Michael

Named in honor of the powerful Gaelic land goddess Beara, the Beara Peninsula holds some of Ireland’s wildest ground. Our hike straddles a high ridge dividing the counties of Cork and Kerry in the region around the Healy Pass. Bronze Age people recognized the sanctity of the Beara Peninsula and placed some of their most evocative stone circles here. After a hike up to the Gap of Dunloe, a narrow mountain pass between MacGillicuddy’s Reeks and Purple Mountain, we boat out to see dramatic Skellig Michael, a remarkable monastic outpost set atop a pinnacle.

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Days 6-9
Corrán Tuathail / Dingle Peninsula / Great Blasket Island

Our hike on Corrán Tuathail brings us to the summit of Ireland! An easier option is a hike in Killarney National Park, with time to explore Killarney town. On the Dingle Peninsula, a mist-shrouded spine of sandstone mountains notched with bays, beaches, and hidden troves of pre-Christian antiquities, we hike a pilgrim route across Mount Brandon, with a grand finale in mesmerizing Great Blasket Island, the westernmost point in continental Europe, where we’ll have a sense of walking along the edge of the world. Depart on Day 9 via Dingle.

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Highlights

Highlights

Enjoy an insider’s introduction to Ireland’s rich traditions and powerful history
Hike the Killarney National Park, Beara Peninsula, and legendary MacGillicuddy’s Reeks, with easy or moderate options
Meet shepherds, artists, poets, musicians—our Trip Leaders welcome you into their world!
Summit Corrán Tuathail, Ireland’s highest mountain, and hike sacred Mount Brandon
Savor Ireland’s superb culinary scene
Hear traditional music and song (our leaders seek out the finest local musicians for you)

Details

Length: 9 days
Cost From: $5395  
Arrive: Cork, Ireland
Depart: Dingle, Ireland
Lodging: 8 nights charming inns and hotels
Meals: All meals included except 1 dinner (B=Breakfast, L=Lunch, D=Dinner)
Activity: Hiking / Trekking, Cultural Adventures
Trip Level:

A mix of moderate walks and hikes, 4-6 hours a day, van support (for luggage or if you wish to skip a day's hike)