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A listing of some of the activities enjoyed by families visiting Killarney:
Horse and carriage rides are available from many locations around Killarney. The are two main locations. The first being in town in front of The International Hotel for rides to Knockreer Estate, Ross Castle and Muckross Estate. The second main location is in front of Muckross House for rides to Muckross Abbey, Torc Waterfall and Dinis Cottage. Prebooking is not necessary unless you wish to be picked up at your accommodation.
Horse Riding at Killarney Riding Stables is available to those 8 years old and up. They offer day trips of varying durations and can provide all necessary equipment.
Horse Racing And to continue on the horse theme, Killarney hosts race meets 3 times a year (May, July, August) at a track with panoramic views of the lakes and mountains. Oh, and kids under 14 are free - so bring them all!
Sheep Farm For other 4 legged friends of a shorter stature there is Kissane's Sheep Farm outside Killarney in The Black Valley. They offer sheepdog and sheep sheering demonstrations (in season) and kids are allowed to cuddle and bottle feed the pet lambs. Families can also adopt-a-sheep and while you won't get to take the sheep home you will be get FREE entrance to the farm.
Pet Farm Another farm with a larger variety of animals is Kennedy's Pet Farm. Here the price of admission includes a pony ride for kids and accommodates visitors in all types of weather.
And similar to the above is Coolwood Wildlife Park with more exotic fare in 10 acres of wildlife park and 50 acres total of wildlife sanctuary. It too is just off the main Killarney Cork Road (N22).
Crazy Golf at Dunloe Golf Course is fun for all the family. Play Crazy Golf through an imaginative scaled model of the Killarney mountains and lakeland. Stimulating & Educational, laughter included free of charge.
Killarney National Park offers 26,000 acres of mountains, woodlands, and lakes with many miles of trails in various terrain.
Ross Castle a 15th century structure built by The O'Donoghue Chieftains is open for tours during the season (March to November). One is almost guaranteed to find some swans ready to be fed on the approach to the Castle so perhaps save a slice of bread from breakfast and bring it along. From the lake side of the castle one has two options for getting on the water. Traditional boats will take visitors to the island of Innisfallen Island and its 6th century monastic ruins. Covered and heated water-coaches will take visitors on a loop tour of the largest of Killarney's lakes.
Muckross Area Killarney National Park is divided into two main visiting area. That of Knockreer Estate which stretches down to Ross Castle and the more famed portion containing Muckross House and Gardens. The house is open for tours while the gardens (including parking) are entirely free. Next to the main parking lot is the entrance to Muckross Traditional Farms a recreation of Irish country life from the 1930s and 40s. Three farmsteads of various sizes (income level) are depicted along with several dwellings and workshops. Nearby Muckross Abbey is open all year long and is free to visit.
Knockreer Estate located on the edge of town by St. Mary's Cathedral offers one of the best views of the park for very little effort. Up the hill to the right of the Deenagh Gate Lodge leads one to small remnant of a once grand old house. From the garden slopes in front of the present house one can view Lough Leane and its many islands as well as the mountains of Torc and Toomies. If you know where you are looking you can just make out the gray spec that is Ross Castle. Also, by the entrance to the estate, over a foot bridge by the cathedral, is a large children's playground.
When the weather decides not to cooperate with visitors Killarney now has an Aura Sports and Leisure Center. Also The Aquila Club at The Gleneagle Hotel is open to non guests and Killarney does have a 5 screen movie theatre.
Tralee - The All Weather Destination For family activities is only 25min drive from Killarney - Tralee is well worth a trip with The Aquadome, Kerry County Museum, Toby World All Weather Play Centre, the Tralee Wetlands Centre and steam train rides at Blennerville all in Tralee.
Dingle has an aquarium and dolphin swimming in Dingle.