A Valentia Island day trip is one of our all-time family favourites.
An hour’s drive from Caragh Lake along the Ring of Kerry, you’ll be rewarded with a fantastic range of activities for everyone.
Here’s the route and some of the pit stops we make along the way.
With the filming of Star Wars: The Force Awakens on Skellig Michael, it’s become harder and harder to get onto the island itself.
The Skellig Experience, a visitors centre on Valentia Island, just over the bridge from Portmagee, will give you a small flavour of it and is a good place to start your day trip.
It has a range of displays for all ages, a short movie about the islands, along with a cafe, shop and outdoor seating.
On a fine day, it’s a beautiful place to look out over to Portmagee and watch the fishing boats go by.
Valentia Island Candles
After the Skellig Experience turn left, wind your way along the coast and spot the Skelligs in the distance.
Up some narrow roads you’ll find Valentia Island Candles – a small simple place, but one we always enjoy.
They produce and sell a range of scented candles that make a great souvenir but best of all, the kids can create their own.
There’s also an old Scalextric track they can play with while the wax dries.
Valentia Ice Cream
As you then make your way across the island towards Knightstown you can stop off at Valentia Ice Cream.
It’s a small ice cream parlour, cafe and play area, situated next to the dairy farm where the ice cream is produced.
Unfortunately you can’t see where they actually make it but out the back you have some lovely views over rolling fields back toward Portmagee.
Valentia Island Sea Sports & Adventures
Now this is one of our all-time favourites.
Just at the pier in Knightstown there’s a watersports school that rent out canoes, dinghies and wetsuits.
They also have a floating trampoline moored in the harbour which the kids can canon-ball off at high tide – super simple fun.
Do check the tides though and try and plan your trip accordingly.
Also take note that the school only tends to operate in high season.
Valentia Island Ferry
When everyone’s dried off and feeling refreshed you can take the car ferry from Knightstown over to Renard.
The ferry generally runs every 10 minutes and it’s a short 5 minute crossing.
The Point Seafood Restaurant
At Renard you can then stop off at The Point, a beautiful little pub right by the water, for a well-deserved drink and some delicious seafood.
The views are simply spectacular!
Back over towards Knightstown you can watch the sun go down and reflect on what will hopefully have been a fun full day!
Don’t leave it too late in the day though. They don’t take bookings and it’s very popular.