Beara Peninsula information
Beara or the Beara Peninsula is a peninsula on the south-west coast of Ireland, bounded between the Kenmare "river" (actually a bay) to the north side and Bantry Bay to the south. It has two mountain ranges running down its centre: the Caha Mountains and the Slieve Miskish Mountains. The northern part of the peninsula from Kenmare to near Ardgroom is in County Kerry, while the rest forms the barony of Bear in County Cork.
Image: View from the Healy Pass looking north with the heights of the Iveragh peninsula on the horizon
The main traditional tourist attractions on the peninsula are the ruins of Dunboy Castle and Puxley Mansion, the Copper Mines Museum in Allihies, Garnish Island by Glengarriff (maintained by the OPW) and Derreen Garden (privately owned but open to the public).
The "Ring of Beara" is a tourist trail for cars which follows the roads for about 148 kilometres (92 mi) circumnavigating the peninsula. It starts in Kenmare, crossing the Healy Pass through Adrigole, passing Castletownbere, Allihies, and turn offs to Dursey Island, Eyeries and Ardgroom, ending in Glengarriff. The area has had a long connection with the sea; Castletownbere is one of Ireland's largest fishing ports and has diving, sailing and boating facilities.
The Beara Way is a long distance walking route around the peninsula with several historical and archaeological sites en route. The main towns on the route are Castletownbere, Kenmare and Glengarriff. There are a number of villages in between including Allihies, Ardgroom, Adrigole, and Eyeries. Bere Island and Dursey Island can be reached by a short trip by ferry or cable car respectively. The Beara Way is part of the Beara-Breifne Way based on the march of O'Sullivan Beare in 1603. The tallest Ogham stone in Europe, the Ballycrovane Ogham Stone, is close to Eyeries.
The Beara Peninsula forms part of the Wild Atlantic Way.