Difference between revisions of "Dingle Peninsula"
Revision as of 12:12, 22 January 2007
The landscape is wild and beautiful from the eastern spine of the peninsula in the steep Slieve Mish (mountain of phantoms) to the western end where the land breaks into a scattering of uninhabited and dramatic islands and cliffs and beaches alternate around the coast. Dingle town (An Daingean) is small enough to walk and big enough to be lively.
Mount Brandon is one of Ireland's highest at just over 1000 metres, and commands a wonderful view in good conditions. It can be climbed from many directions but you should be warned that weather conditions can change very quickly here as it is the first height to get the Atlantic weather.
Ventry (Ceann Trá)is a small village four miles west of Dingle. It is unusual in that it has two centres of commerce, both comprised of a pub and a shop. One has the Catholic church, and the other, in true balance, has the primary school. The whole Ventry area is linked by the arc of Ventry Harbour, with one of the most attractive and safest beaches on the west coast of Ireland.
Ventry is a great place to enjoy a seaside, rural holiday . . . or to just escape the bustle of Dingle town. Have a pint at Quinns overlooking Ventry Bay
Ventry's sheltered harbour and three miles of sandy beach make it one of the most attractive and safest beaches on the west coast of Ireland. Safe swimming, windsurfing, canoeing, diving and sunbathing can be enjoyed by people of all ages. Jamie Knox's Focus Windsurfing School, based in Castlegregory, has equipment available for hire right at Ventry Beach, as well as offers tuition and conducts a Watersports Adventure Club during July and August for kids and teens. A beautiful Bed and Breakfast is the Plough located in Ventry Village overlooking Ventry Bay http://www.ireland-discover.com/plough.htm
The Great Blasket island to the west, which was evacuated in the 1950s produced at least three well-regarded Irish writers, the most well-known being Peig Sayers. Until recently the western end of the peninsula, including Dingle was very cut off from the rest of Ireland by sheer distance and poor roads.
The peninsula has an association with St Brendan the navigator who sailed from Brandon on the north of the peninsula to America, by way of Iceland and Greenland in the dark ages, on a sailboat made of laths and hides. Tim Severin replicated this journey in the 1970s, demonstrating that the story was plausible.
Once described by the National Geographic Traveler as “the most beautiful place on earth”, the Dingle Peninsula is a place of intense allure, with a plethora of green landscapes, rocky hills, long sandy beaches and staggering cliff edges. The warm Gulf Stream reaches the peninsula, giving has a wonderful mixture of sometimes rare and unusual flora and fauna.
Dingle is one of Ireland’s Government-protected Irish (Gaelic)-speaking areas, called “Gaeltachts”. Dingle's Irish name is Daingean Uí Chúis which, to fit on signposts, is generally abbreviated to An Daingean.
Many of the towns and villages in the region have Irish names too and, as many maps use the anglicised versions of these names, visitors are advised to purchase maps that give both the Irish and English versions of all placenames.
The greater part of the peninsula is Irish speaking, although no-one will expect you to speak any. However it has recently been decided that all signs in Irish speaking areas will only be in Irish, so they might not look as they sound.
You can see Fungi the dolphin. Fungi is a male bottlenose dolphin who has taken up residence in Dingle harbour and has stayed for twenty years, becoming quite a celebrity. You can take a boat trip from Dingle where the boatmen are so confident in Fungi that they will not charge you if he doesn't show up.
It is also possible to swim with Fungi and you can rent wet suits. Inquire in Dingle.http://www.dingle-region.com/fungi.htm
On the Dingle Peninsula, you're never too far from the sea, and the fishing here is spectacular! Golf at Dingle Golf Course highly reccomended! http://www.dinglelinks.com
Murphy's Pub offers excellent food at very reasonable prices. They are located near the pier in Dingle town http://www.murphyspubdingle.com/
For the best crack try out The Dingle Pub which offers excellent ballad music from 9pm http://www.thedinglepub.com
There is an official An Oige hostel at Dunquin near Slea Head.
B&Bs are the most popular form of accommodation on the area. If staying in the town try: http://www.dingle-region.com/sheehy.htm http://www.dinglequayside.com/ http://www.dingle-region.com/eagle.htm http://www.dinglefarm.com/ If staying in Ventry try: http://www.dingle-peninsula.com/ http://www.dingle-vacation.com/ http://www.dinglecastle.com/ If you want to stay longer than a couple of days then Self Catering is a better bet. Please note prices vary as to location. Here is a small pick of Self Catering Accommodation around the area: http://www.dingle-region.com/faillnamna.htm - Ventry http://www.dingle-region.com/indingle.htm - Dingle Town http://www.conorpasslodge.com - Dingle Town