The Gap of Dunloe

Gap of Dunloe - © Ire DronePhotography
Note Traveler's Note
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The Gap of Dunloe is a must-see in the Killarney National Park in Ireland. It is a magical place, 100% wild, which is neither more nor less than a narrow valley, surrounded by impressive mountains. The site is picturesque and narrow, about 15 minutes drive from Killarney. It is popular for its beautiful views, lakes, waterfalls, outdoor adventures, stone bridges and unique ruins.

If you want to venture out for a walk, you’ll see beautiful lakes, a winding road, a beautiful stone bridge, and incredible mountains. A must-see that will blow your mind!

Visit Gap of Dunloe

A site in the heart of Killarney National Park…

Gap of Dunloe - © Lyd Photography

Gap of Dunloe – © Lyd Photography

The Gap of Dunloe is without a doubt one of the most famous places in the national park.

It offers remarkable landscapes, 100% wild, where nature, triumphant, amazes the traveler every minute.

The light is beautiful, and the sky seems to clash with the mountains, lakes and land. A magnificent vision, not to be missed!

Note that the Gap of Dunloe includes no less than 5 lakes all fed by the River Loe. Here is the list (from north to south):

  • Coosaun Lough,
  • Black Lake,
  • Cushnavally Lake,
  • Auger Lake,
  • Black Lough.

The place allows to have access to an absolutely sumptuous panorama, which will make you dominate the Black Valley.

You should know that this place is particularly frequented, and appreciated by walkers. The spot is grandiose, ideal for an exploration on foot… or even by horse-drawn carriage!

The Gap of Dunloe is one of the most romantic tourist destinations in the region! We can’t count the number of wedding requests that have been made there!

Just put on your crampons, take your backpack, and go for an adventure: you will feel like you are alone in the world, in a green setting with lakes. It’s magical!

Possible hikes from the Gap of Dunloe

Gap of Dunloe - © Lyd Photography

Gap of Dunloe – © Lyd Photography

Want to hike in the wilderness? The Gap of Dubloe can be explored during a hike! The opportunity to discover the area at your own pace, taking your time!

The most popular circuit is 6km long and does not require any particular hiking skills. But be careful: it is not a loop: you will start from the Visitor Centre, to reach “the Head of the Gap of Dunloe”, the highest point of the valley.

You will have to plan to go back the way you came to get back to your transportation!

A little advice: don’t forget to bring the right equipment for the hike. Shoes, warm clothes, food, water and a good windbreaker to prevent rain. Kerry is a particularly wet region, and changeable weather in Ireland is common! It is not uncommon to come across unprepared hikers soaked by a rain shower! A real discomfort that can be avoided!

Before entering the park, we advise you to discover the Visitor Centre. This one is located at the entrance, and proposes you an interesting presentation of Kerry, its history, as well as its remarkable places.

Small detail which is important: the establishment has a “bar” where hikers can settle down before and after their walk… A way to prolong the pleasure while sipping a tea, a coffee, or a small pint! After the effort: the comfort!

The rates are reasonable, and the experience allows you to taste the legendary Irish hospitality… and its simplicity!

Would you like a ride in a horse-drawn carriage?

Gap of Dunloe - © Gabriel Cassan

Gap of Dunloe – © Gabriel Cassan

If the idea of walking for hours in the great outdoors gives you a huge case of the munchies, you should know that it is possible to explore the Gap of Dunloe by horse-drawn carriage. And the activity is rather tempting!

You will be able to go for a ride in a retro carriage, pulled by an Irish horse… all in a breathtaking setting! The ride is 11 kilometers long and will take you back to a bygone era, when the only means of locomotion was the horse.

You will be surprised to admire the place in a different way. The Gap of Dunloe seems even more majestic, and the light literally transforms the valley and its mountains with each cloud, or with each breakthrough of the sun!

Don’t forget your camera: it’s the opportunity to play the apprentice photographer, and to shine by your artistic talent!

A perfect walk for couples in search of romance… even on rainy days!

But be aware that prices are quite high! Count 90€ for the stroll… A bit expensive, but it will make your exploration of the Gap of Dunloe unforgettable!

Reservations can be made at the Visitor Centre, but beware: this activity is very popular. Don’t hesitate to call to reserve: you’ll be sure to get your slot and avoid the queue!

Finally, you should know that there are companies like the Gap of Dunloe Tours, which offers alternative tours, by retro bus and boat to discover the valley. Don’t hesitate to discover their website to know more!

The Gap of Dunloe
Practical information

Address Address:
on the N71, in the direction of Muckross

Coordonnées GPSGPS:
52.025444, -9.635833

Duration of the visit Duration of the visit:
PricesPrices :


Opening hoursOpening hours:

every day from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.

The Gap of Dunloe : the map

So much more to discover...