Kerry & Cork Discovery Tour

Discover Kerry and Cork - the epitome of romatic Ireland


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Activity types:

  • Coastal
  • Hills & moorland
  • History
From £999.00 - 7 nights


Prices are per person

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Room 2:
Room 3:

Holiday overview

The pretty little town of Kenmare is an ideal base from which to explore the magic of southwest Ireland. Experience spectacular landscapes, taking in the Beara Peninsula, Killarney, Ring of Kerry and Bantry Bay.

Holiday Highlights

  • The beautiful coastline of the Dingle Peninsula
  • The lakes and waterfalls of the Killarney National Park
  • The Ring of Kerry – colourful villages, green hillsides, glorious beaches and ancient history
  • Bantry Bay with its bustling fishing port and historic mansion

Price includes

  • Good quality en-suite accommodation in one of our European partner hotels
  • Half Board – continental breakfast and evening meal
  • The services of an experienced HF Holidays’ leader
  • Full day excursions with all essential transport in resort
  • ‘With flight’ holidays include return flights from the UK and hotel transfers

In pictures...


Kenmare-Bay-Hotel, Ireland

The 3-star Kenmare Bay Hotel sits on the edge of the pretty little town of Kenmare, facing the hills of the Kerry Way. The hotel has a pleasant restaurant, cosy bar with outside seating, and a large indoor swimming pool with sauna and spa pool.





Your room

The hotel has 127 bright and spacious en-suite bedrooms, all with:

  • Direct dial telephone
  • Flat screen TV
  • Hairdryer
Kenmare-Bay-Hotel, bedroom


Kenmare-Bay-Hotel, reception The hotel has a range of facilities including the Courtyard Bar, which has a cosy atmosphere. The courtyard terrace is a decked area off the bar where you can relax with a drink.

There is also the Bay Health Club, which includes a spa pool and swimming pool, gymnasium and extensive selection of beauty and holistic treatments available (payable locally).


Our holidays at Kenmare are on a Half Board basis and include breakfast and your evening meal. Two of your evening meals will be taken in local restaurants.

The hotel offers a self-service buffet breakfast each morning with tea, coffee and toast served at the table.

A typical Irish breakfast includes sausages, bacon, eggs, mushrooms, tomatoes, black & white pudding and soda bread. Should you prefer something a little lighter, you can choose from a selection of fresh fruit, croissants, cereal, and fruit juice.

Lunch (payable locally)
You can buy packed lunches from the hotel (order the night before). Alternatively ingredients for your picnic lunch can be bought from local shops; your leaders will advise you of the options.
The hotel has a well-stocked bar serving beer, wine and spirits.

Evening meal
Dinner is served in the Bay Restaurant, which focuses on local Kerry produce combined with fine wines and attentive service whilst enjoying views of the Kerry Mountains. For vegetarian option and any other special dietary requirements we recommend that you spend a few minutes discussing these with the hotel staff.

On two evenings, meals will be taken in local restaurants. One entertains our guests with storytelling and traditional Irish dancing and the other serves sumptuous dishes. 
Kenmare Bay Hotel, bar

Your evenings

Each evening your leaders will tell you about the next day's activities and answer any questions you may have.

During the evening you may like to join in an optional organised activity, such as a quiz.


During your Discovery Tour you will have the opportunity to visit many fascinating places of interest. This is the proposed programme, but your HF Holidays leader may adjust it at their discretion, taking into account factors such as weather or local opening times or the wishes of the group.

The Beara Peninsula

Derreen Gardens, Eyeries and Allihies, Castletownbere and Healy Pass

We explore the delightful Beara Peninsula, stopping en route to marvel at the great collection of tree ferns at Derreen Gardens, the pretty painted town of Eyeries and Allihies with its incredible sea views. In the afternoon we visit the bustling little town of Castletownbere before heading off for the spectacularly beautiful Healy Pass.

Ring of Kerry

A scenic route around the Kerry peninsula with views across the Atlantic Ocean

A visit to Kerry wouldn’t be complete without this fascinating drive. Our scenic route begins with Portmagee and the Skellig ring for lovely views of Valentina Island and Skellig Islands. We then survey the dramatic Atlantic Ocean from Waterville, which takes its name from the Irish An Coireán, meaning "the crescent". Later we explore Derrynane House, former home of Irish politician and statesman Daniel O'Connell, now an Irish National Monument. Our final stop is at Sneen, with its stunning Sculpture Park and Garden of the Senses.

Killarney and Muckross House

Killarney's history and lakes

Today we drive to Killarney for a short stop at this delightful historic town. Afterwards we visit Muckross House, the 19th century Victorian mansion which is set against the stunning beauty of Killarney National Park and stands close to the shores of Muckross Lake, one of Killarney's three lakes, famed worldwide for their splendour and beauty

Bantry House and Garinish Island (Ilnacullin)

A fine stately home overlooking Bantry Bay and Ilnacullin, an island garden of rare and unique beauty

This morning we visit historic Bantry House, where we stop for lunch. This afternoon we catch the ferry to Garinish Island (Ilnacullin). Warmed by the waters of the Gulf Stream, this island and its unique gardens enjoys a climate that is almost sub-tropical, making it possible for beautiful ornamental plants from many parts of the world to flourish.  

Dingle Peninsula

Fishing town of Dingle, views of the Atlantic Ocean and the Galarus Oratory

Today we have time to soak up the atmosphere in the colourful fishing town of Dingle, ‘capital’ of the Dingle Peninsula - or Corca Dhuibhne. Afterwards we enjoy the beautiful views (and possibly some sightings of seals!) at Clogher Head. Time permitting, we stop to view Galarus Oratory, a tiny 1200 year old church on our way home.

Holiday information

All transport relevant to the itinerary (hired minibus or local transport) is included in the price of your holiday, but for flexibility we do not include entrances, or optional cable car rides (allow £30 per person).

Discovery holidays involve active sightseeing and you should expect to spend lots of time on your feet. Optional short walks of approximately 2½ miles allow you to stretch your legs and see the best of the local scenery. 

Free day – on our 7 night holidays we allow one free day where there is no organised excursion. This is an ideal opportunity for you to relax, enjoy the hotel facilities or explore independently. 

Local area

The "Emerald Isle" offers a multitude of interests for the visitor.  If you are fascinated by ancient relics and their accompanying legends of fairies and leprechauns, or looking to uncover the past history of your ancestors, this is the place to visit.  The countryside is green and lush and the area we visit is the home to the famous circular tourist trail; the Ring of Kerry.  

The counties of Kerry and Cork are located on the wild southwest tip of Ireland and has an abundance of lakes and mountains creating a beautiful landscape to explore.


Kenmare is located between the Kerry Way and the Beara Peninsula and is a friendly town, full of colourful shops and pubs.  The town is full of cultural interests making it worth exploring.


There is a seal watching cruise that goes from Kenmare pier with the commentary of a marine biologist, a 2 hour cruise.  There are complimentary hot drinks and cookies.  

Gardens of Derreen

One of Ireland’s oldest and most established gardens, Derreen is regarded as one of the ten best gardens in Ireland. The gardens are full of rare and exotic plants many of which were brought back from hunting expeditions in the Himalayas and beyond. 


We recognise that everyone’s travel arrangements are unique, so all our holidays to Europe can be booked ‘with flight’ or ‘without flight’, giving you more flexibility and choice.

Travel by plane


‘With flight’ holidays – the hassle-free option

Book your holiday ‘with flight’ and choose between Heathrow, Manchester and Birmingham flights to Cork airport. For flight times and prices please see the Dates & Prices tab.

If you choose this option we automatically include return transfers between the airport and the hotel. The coach transfer takes approx 1 1/2 hours to the Kenmare Bay Hotel.


‘Without flight’ holidays – the flexible travel option

Alternatively, tailor your journey to suit you by booking your holiday ‘without flight’ allowing you the freedom to book your own flights from your local airport.

If you choose this option, transfers are not included in the price. However, below are some suggestions to help you reach your destination:

  • We can book you a seat on the HF Holidays’ transfer coach from Cork airport. This is timed to meet the HF Holidays’ flights* (provisional flight times can be found on the dates and prices tab or you can call us on 020 8732 1220 for more information). Cost per single journey is £25.00.
  • Why not let us book you a private taxi transfer at a cost of £140.00 per single taxi journey?
  • If it would be more convenient we can also arrange transfers from Shannon and Kerry airport. Shannon taxi transfer: please ask for details Kerry taxi transfer: please ask for details

Transfers must be pre-booked.  Please call 020 8732 1220 for more details


* Please note that HF Holidays is not responsible for your onward travel if you fail to meet the transfer coach under any circumstance.




Alban O'Brien

Alban has been a teacher and lifelong student of literature for over 45 years. He has shared his enthusiasm for novels, plays and poetry with people of all ages, from pupils in secondary school to trainee teachers in a university Faculty of Education and, since 2012, with HF guests across Britain. He describes the three pillars of his life as his family, his football team and Shakespeare, and lists an MA in Shakespeare and Theatre among his qualifications.

He chose to lead with HF after many years as a guest on walking holidays in Britain, Europe and Worldwide, has led a wide range of Literary and Discovery holidays, including some in Europe, and lists his passions as history, travel and people. As a frequent fellow traveller, and now an experienced leader, he looks forward to welcoming new and returning guests to holidays in 2019.



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Dates & Prices

Date Description Nights Brochure price Book
23 Jun 2019 KNLEL - Kenmare Discovery Tour - Without Flights 7 £999.00 Book Now
22 Sep 2019 KNLEL - Kenmare Discovery Tour
(Travel included - Departs from: London Heathrow)

Flight - Outbound


  • Depart: 22 Sep 2019, 9:30 a.m.
  • Arrive: 22 Sep 2019, 10:55 a.m.
  • Depart from: London Heathrow
  • Arrive at: Cork

Flight - Return


  • Depart: 29 Sep 2019, 4 p.m.
  • Arrive: 29 Sep 2019, 5:25 p.m.
  • Depart from: Cork
  • Arrive at: London Heathrow
7 £1,299.00 Book Now
22 Sep 2019 KNLEL - Kenmare Discovery Tour
(Travel included - Departs from: Manchester International)

Flight - Outbound


  • Depart: 22 Sep 2019, 9 a.m.
  • Arrive: 22 Sep 2019, 10:35 a.m.
  • Depart from: Manchester International
  • Arrive at: Cork

Flight - Return


  • Depart: 29 Sep 2019, 2:50 p.m.
  • Arrive: 29 Sep 2019, 4:25 p.m.
  • Depart from: Cork
  • Arrive at: Manchester International
7 £1,379.00 Book Now
22 Sep 2019 KNLEL - Kenmare Discovery Tour - Without Flights 7 £999.00 Book Now

Prices are per person


  • Double room for sole occupancy: £18 per night
  • Allow €34 for entrances
  • Non-member associate fee: £10 per person

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