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Killarney (Irish: Cill Airne, meaning "The church of the sloe") is a town in County Kerry that is located north of the MacGillicuddy Reeks, on the northeastern shore of the Lakes of Killarney which are part of Killarney National Park.
Known all over the world for its romantic beauty (Lakes of Killarney, the 25,000 acre Killarney National Park, the Ring of Kerry) the Killarney area has long been a source of inspiration for poets, painters and writers and, despite the commercial tone of the town itself which has been a centre of tourism since the days of the Victorian Grand Tour - the surroundings are stunning and, with a number of the country’s finest hotels in the town and immediate area, it remains an excellent base for exploring the area, or for leisure activities, notably golf.
The three beautiful main lakes are the biggest attraction, while the rugged Gap of Dunloe is in direct contrast to them. Ladies View at Molls Gap between Kenmare and Killarney was declared the "finest view in the land" by Queen Victoria. The area is a paradise for bird watchers with over 120 species being recorded locally. Muckross House and Gardens is a beautiful estate containing a unique collection of antiques and art and afford a tremendous view of the Lakes. While nearby Ross Castle is the gateway to the Lakes it is a fully furnished 14th Century Castle is open to the public with Waterboat cruises available nearby.
When visiting Muckross House at the National Park, The Garden Restaurant (064 314440; www.muckross-house.ie) is open 9-5 daily, all year except Christmas/NewYear, and offers just the kind of good, wholesome food that’s welcome, in attractive surorndings.