Thoughts on Travel, Photography and Life from Ian Lloyd

Ireland - The Ring of Kerry

Ireland has some fantastic sights but The Ring of Kerry on the west coast offers photographers a range of spectacular possibilities in a relatively small area. From highland lakes and a national park near Killarney to fantastic rugged coastlines and charming rural settlements it seems to embody all the variety of visual possibilities we imagine when we think of Ireland. Its that good. But like most things these days that means a lot of tourists. Fortunately its usually a bus trip in the middle of the day for most, leaving the area relatively uncrowded at other times.

Here are some things to keep in mind for your visit. First off, it rains a lot in Ireland so plan your trip with seasons and weather in mind. Allow 2-3 days in the area so you can wait for that break in the drizzle. If you can afford the time, stay at one of the small towns along the way. Better still, wander off the main track to stay at places like Portmagee or Ballinskelligs and you will have the place to yourself. 

A car will give you flexibility but the single lane roads make stopping difficult at times. Meeting an oncoming tourist bus hell bent on making its daily schedule can be a white knuckle experience and getting stuck behind several buses can be just as bad. The solution is to drive early and late in the day and complete the circular route in a clock-wise fashion as the buses travel anti-clockwise. It also goes without saying that renting a small compact car will make life a whole lot easier.

by Ian Lloyd