Muckross Park, County Kerry
There are a number of opportunities for sightseeing, history or just having fun at Muckross. First there is the Victorian era house and gardens which can be seen by guided tour. Be warned - although the tour is excellent it took us more than an hour to complete; a bit long for young kids. Nearby is a farm park which children can visit and pet animals, play and otherwise burn off energy. Horse and cart rides are also offered just outside the house by the lake. A large gift shop, totally packed with people the day we stopped, stands midway between the house and farm park. Finally there are the Muckross Abbey ruins, which seems to be overlooked by most groups rushing between the lake and the farm park.
Muckross House is quite an impressive victorian manor-house and it dates back to the year 1843 the way it looks now. In a previous building, at the same place, the german Rudolf Erich Raspe (1737-1794) was living for several years - he is the author of the famous book about Baron Münchhausen , a daredivil, who once even took a "ride" on a cannon-ball in order to explore a battlefield from above...
Muckross House is a museum today, showing great furniture and exhibits of the irish history, flora and fauna. Muckross House & Park is also one of the largest recreation-areas in Ireland, including an old monastery, a big lake, several restaurants, souvenir-shops etc.
Muckross House is daily open for visitors :
from 09.00a.m. till 06.00p.m. (Nov-march till 05.30p.m.)
Killarney is probably the most touristy area of Ireland...but I have to say it is very lovely. Take N71 from Killarney to Kenmare and you will go through the Killarney National Park and the Muckross area. Here is the wonderful Ross Castle...I think one of my favorites. I always come through off season, so it is not crowded.
It sits on Lough Leane and it is very nice. This Park area is so beautiful, almost like Sherwood Forest where Robin Hood roamed. Very mossy and elfin like. I do believe they could have filmed scenes for "the Lord of the Rings" here.
The Muckross Park lies just outside of Killarney, it offers fantastic walks and astounding scenery.
Yyou can actually visit the grounds of "Muckross House", and then wander in the countryside.
They offer pony and trap rides to the different locations in the park, or get a map and you can navigate yourself!