Kerry Greenway on the Farranfore to Valentia Island Disused Railway, Kerry, Ireland

  • Author:ActiveME
  • Created: January 9, 2013
  • Updated: December 12, 2017
Location: Kerry
  • DistanceInstructions
  • Distance91.04 km
  • Time0 s
  • Speed0.0 km/h
  • Min altitude0 m
  • Peak130 m
  • Climb337 m
  • Descent368 m

The proposed Kerry Greenway from Glenbeigh to Cahersiveen and Valentia Island will be one of the worlds best and most spectacular walking and cycling routes. The route follows the old disused railway line from Farranfore to Valentia Island Harbour. This rail line was one of the most spectacular train journeys in the world, the western most in Europe and an attraction that Ireland can only dream of now. The scenic views of Dingle Bay, Inch and Rossbeigh Beaches and The Blasket Islands on the Mountain Stage section of the line near Glenbeigh must have been out of this world. This railway line, 62 km in length and opened in September 1893, completely changed south Kerry and the rural way of life both socially and economically.

In February 1960, just over 50 years ago, these potential tourist gems were closed due to decreasing rural populations, emigration, alternative modes of transport like the car and the lack of tourism, that we take for granted today. Imagine the tourism possibilities today if you could travel the length and breath of Ireland by train. The terminus at Renard also served a short railway line on Valentia Island itself which connected the world famous Slate Quarry and Knightstown Village (The Foot) and allowed Valentia Slate to be exported all over the world.

With the recent tourism success of the Great Western Greenway cycle and walking route from Westport to Achill in Mayo, many other disused railway lines in Ireland are now under consideration for tourism upgrades.

Walking on some sections of this railway line is not advised and is at your own risk. Some sections are on steep and unstable ground and there are also closed bridges and unused viaducts which may require permission to access. A section of this line also forms part of the Kerry Way National Waymarked Trail at the beginning of Mountain Stage near Glenbeigh.  Considering the huge economic benefit and return on investment the Mayo Greenway has achieved, an upgrade of this line to Greenway standard could achieve a far greater economic return as both the Domestic and Overseas tourism market in Kerry is up to x5 times greater than that of Mayo.

To get directions, use our Map of Ireland and Sat Nav tools on our website and find and follow the track with GPS maps on our free ActiveME iPhone and Android App.  At all times, our maps and App should be used in conjunction with proper map and compass navigation techniques and appropraite permissions from landowners.  Feel free to send us your photos and add you own star rating, comments or suggestions below.