The Gap of Dunloe

The first part of the trip round the Lakes and the Gap of Dunloe starts from the quay at Ross Castle on the Lower Lake. The open boat passes through all three lakes on its 14 mile journey, surrounded by magnificent views of the mountains.  

Lord Brandon's Cottage

Passengers leave the boat and walk along a narrow path through reed beds to Lord Brandon’s Cottage (formerly a hunting lodge, now an open-air restaurant).

Stop here for a light lunch before walking round the back of the restaurant to meet the horse and driver who will take you on the second stage of the journey.

The Black Valley

The road from Lord Brandon’s passes the end of the Black Valley and then turns sharply up the mountain, winding for seven miles through spectacular scenery to the Gap itself and then making its way down to Kate Kearney’s Cottage, a comfortable pub/restaurant where there will be time for some more refreshments before returning to Killarney town.

A remote valley, nestling at the foot of Ireland’s highest mountain, Carrauntuohill. The Black Valley was the last district in Ireland to benefit from the Rural Electrification Scheme in the 1950s.

Checking the Wheels

A driver makes sure all is well before continuing the journey.

The Approach to the Gap

Approaching the Gap from the South, the road passes the Serpent Lough. The river filters from here through an underground passage, re-appearing further down the mountain.

The Gap of Dunloe

Having passed through the Gap, this is the view (from the North) most often seen on postcards. The narrow road twists and turns between the mountains.

A Mountain Bridge

Below the Gap, the road crosses the stream on its way downhill.

The End of the Journey

The horse enjoys a well-earned rest after his seven-mile journey through the mountains.