Killarney is a town in County Kerry, in the south of Ireland. Though it has a small population of just 15,000 people, Killarney is a diverse and extremely charming location for visitors of all kinds. The town sits on the edge of Killarney National Park, allowing for extensive time in nature, whether you enjoy hiking, bicycling, horse riding, road tripping or simply ambling along arm in arm. Highlights in the area include the Gap of Dunloe, the Lakes of Killarney, MacGillycuddy’s Reeks and Purple Mountain, Muckross House and Abbey and the Ring of Kerry scenic trail, which includes Innisfallen Island and Killorglin Town.
Dunloe View Hostel
The perfect place to begin your explorations of this stunning, historic part of Ireland steeped in recorded history stretching back more than 1500 years is the Dunloe View Hostel. The hostel began life many a year ago as a family-run Bed & Breakfast but suffered when Irelands economy took a downturn. Newly reopened as a hostel, Dunloe View Hostel has been revitalized. The bedrooms have taken on a hostel feel, with comfortable wooden bunk beds in twin, three and four-bed “dorms”, as well as a family and a private option in the six bedroom country house.
A fully stocked kitchen, large dining room and cosy living room are available for guests to use at their leisure. Eggs – and often vegetables – from the family garden and polytunnel are made available for guests at breakfast, along with traditional Irish soda breads and jams. In the colder months, a fire is lit in the living room allowing guests to get comfortable on the sofa and have a chat or pick a movie from the DVD collection. Wifi is available throughout the house.
Return from the Ring of Kerry
I made a visit to Dunloe View with a friend just as the leaves were turning golden in the autumn. After two days soaking up the charm of Killarney, and two nights in the utmost comfort and homely feel of Dunloe View Hostel, we set on our way to explore further along the Ring of Kerry. After a day’s drive in our Dublin rental car through beautiful landscape, we decided to find a spot to stop for the evening. Passing through one town after another, we found a reason at each not to stay, each quietly in our own mind comparing it to the hostel we left behind in Killarney. Eventually a look said all the words we had been keeping inside, and we phoned Dunloe View to ask if there was a room for us!
Immediately we turned around and drove the quickest route possible back to Killarney. Unpacking again in Dunloe View Hostel, we felt as if we had returned home. The next morning, our host helped us once again to discover the most suitable and enjoyable activities for our day, tailoring his suggestions to our desires and assuring us that indeed there would be a roaring fire to welcome us home from our hikes in the chilly air. Fully refreshed after our short break together, I parted ways with my friend at the station and fell into a pleasant sleep as the train chugged along towards home.