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Gap of Dunloe
The Gap of Dunloe is a beautiful glacial valley in the Macgillacuddy Reeks mountain range, which dominate the skyline of Killarney. Here you may enjoy an energetic walk or cycle its rough path. The scenery all around the famousLakes of Killarneyis breathtaking and there are many viewing points around the lakes as you see above.
The three main lakes of Killarney occupy a broad valley stretching south between the mountains. The three lakes and the mountains that surround them are all within the Killarney National Park. The Lower Lake is nearest to the town, it is studded with islands and has Muckross Abbey and Ross Castle on its eastern shore.
Why not take the Gap of Dunloe Trip, by horseback or pony and trap through the Gap, and then by boat across the Killarney lake to Ross Castle. Ross Castle is a fantastic 15th Century Castle, which has been restored and has excellent guided tours. You may also take a boat trip out onto Lough Lein, the main lake, and on to Inisfallen island, which has monastic ruins dating back to the 6th and 13th Centuries.
As one travels through the Gap from Kate Kearney's, five small lakes are passed: Coosaun Lough, Black Lake, Cushnavally Lake, Auger Lake, and Black Lough in turn These lakes are connected by the River Loe from which the gap gets its name. Between the first two lakes is an old arch bridge called the 'Wishing Bridge' so named because it is said that wishes made while upon it are destined to come true.
The old red sandstone cliffs of the Gap of Dunloe are a popular location for rock climbing, the main climbing being on the western slopes of the valley, above Black Lake and Coosaun Lough. The current guidebook lists about 130 climbs, ranging in grade from below VS to above E2. Many of the routes consist mainly of horizontal cracks, and so depend on cams for protection.
Our trip was a great experience.
For our first visit to Ireland we were very happy with the variety of accommodations and the pace of the trip.
The narrow roads were an experience and I could see my wife cringing against the hedges knowing there was a wall on the other side of the hedge she was two inches from.
I made an unscheduled climb to the top of Croagh Patrick and was glad I did. The view from the top made the climb worth it. My old legs told me I should have been training.
In Kilkenny we came across a re-enactment of Finnegan’s wake late one night in a little pub. That was a hoot. Finishing in Dublin was the way to go. A visit to the Book of Kells at Trinity was fascinating.
Thank you for your efforts and a great experience.
Charlie & Lois Clarke, Alberta, USA