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Killarney, Dingle, car, which is best for me to base 3 nights?

I read such conflicting information in the travel books about which place to base for 3 nights and I hope you can help. Mind you we will NOT have a car (must rely on bus and train) and I am traveling with a 18 year old granddaughter. I know in Killarney we can take the pony cart/boat lake trip, take a bus day tour around the Dingle Peninsula. Dingle or Tralee sound much more authentic and fun...we both love the music and I love the brew :-)... but what is there to do besides enjoy the pubs in the evening (which we will definately want to do) if you have no car? Are there any day tours to the rest of the Dingle penninsula or to other places that originate out of Dingle or Tralee? Shops in each place?...remember, it's a teenage girl I'm bringing with me and they do love to shop even on a most limited budget! If you have any tour company websites from any of the cities, or personal experience I would be so grateful. We love history and would enjoy exploring ruins, sites, etc.I went to a Tralee website but there were no day tours or tour companies listed. I would appreciated your experience and advice about where to base for 3 nights... with no car... to best see the Dingle Penninsula, experience the music and life, history, beauty, etc. of that vacinity in the 3 nights we have before going to Galway. Thanks!


Posted by
484 posts

Take a look at You might spend one night in Killarney then take the bus to Dingle for two nights. Tralee is a nice town but it is not exactly the fun capital of County Kerry.

Posted by
67 posts

Galway is a great city with LOTS of shops and opportunities for shopping as well as trad music. Your granddaughte should find anything she wants there as well as lots of neat places to poke around in.

I thought Tralee was pretty but there is not much to do there. I wouldn't go there again.

BUT, There is so much to see in Dingle - besides the trip around the peninsula. When we went to Moran's Tours we were able to arrange for a taxi tour for the 2 of us which was wonderful. we could stop where we wanted to take pictures and got a great narrative about the island and Irish history.

There is also an aquarium, walking tours and a handful of local shops with authentic merchandise.

Adventure Dingle has lots of outdoor activities (rock climbing, horse riding and boat trips to the Blasket Islands. Info can be found at website:

The best trad music and brew is along the waterfront and some places have music every night.

If you go around Dingle Peninsula be sure to get an explanation about the huge amount of stone walls and how they take them apart to move livestock around from place to place. It's interesting.

Rick refers to Killarney, in somewhat unflattering terms, about the long street of motels, fast food eateries and souvenir shops. It is very popular for those on "travel around Ireland" bus trips. I plan to go Killarney National Park in September but hope to keep as big as possible distance from the touristy part of Killarney.

Have a GREAT trip!

Posted by
43 posts

Thanks Dale. I've been to Ireland but it has been a few years and I too totally loved Galway. You and others have let me know Trallee is not a match for us and I so appreciate your experience. I have been to Killarney and unless it has changed drastically in 20 years, I loved it. Was it touristy? Yeah, but it had a fun local pub....not the tour bus one, lots of tours, etc. We went up the Dunloe pass and back by boat and also from Killarney we went on a bus tour around the Dingle penninsula. I didn't find it as trashy as I've read it to be...but, this is 20 years later! It isn't anything like Galway but I've come to the conclusion it will still make the best base for the Park, etc. I'll have to give a 20 year comparison report when I return. :-)) Thanks for your in put and I don't think Killarney will be a disappointment...I belive you will find pockets of beauty and great fun and can just skip the rest. Every place has it's positive and negative both. I do think Dingle would be the most fun to stay if we had a car but without a car it would not give the options we need. :-((( Oh well, I figure when I travel it is ALL good and I just find something to enjoy about every place. Again, happy travels and thanks.