See the Gap Of Dunloe in Killarney, Ireland on Canal Boat

Canal Boat
12 Guests

About This Boat

Enjoy at Gap Of Dunloe in Killarney, Ireland by boat!

A mini adventure for young and old through Ireland's Lake District. You can travel by boat through the majestic Lakes of Killarney and the National Park, during which you can enjoy the huge natural oak woodlands of the Upper Lake and the Old Weir Bridge, where the boat may be able to 'Shoot the rapids'. This leads you to the meeting of the waters, where the three lakes join.

Then under the Toothache Bridge into the Middle Lake, where you can see Torc mountain and the Colleen Bawn Rock. You may be lucky on the day to catch a glimpse of the White Tailed Eagles soaring over the mountains. 

Under the Brickeen Bridge and into the Lower Lake where you can see Innisfallen Island, and in the distance Ross Castle - an ancient seat of the O'Donoghue Clan, where the tour finishes.

Boat Tours - Gap Of Dunloe:

• Option 1:

Departing from Ross Castle carpark by coach, you travel the seven-mile journey to Kate Kearney’s Cottage on the northern side of this world famous pass. The Gap is a narrow mountain pass between Mac Gillycuddy Reeks (to the west) and the Purple Mountain (to the east) it is approximately seven miles (or 10 km) the hike takes less than two hours. Pony and Traps are also available at Kate Kearney’s Cottage.
En-route you pass five lakes linked together by the river Loe, with spectacular mountains on either side.
At the end of the hike or pony and trap ride, you will arrive at Lord Brandon’s Cottage on the Gearhameen River. Here you can have a light lunch (not included in the price of the tour)

At 2 pm the boatmen will call guests to the boats for departure through three lakes and two rivers to Ross Castle, enjoying the most beautiful scenery anywhere in the world – the majestic oak woods of Derrycunnihy and Tomies mountains, the Meeting of the Waters where the three lakes meet, the “shooting of the rapids” (water levels permitting) under the Old Weir Bridge, Dinis Cottage on Dinis Island, the old Copper Mines, where copper was mined in Killarney three thousand years ago. Historic Inisfallen Island, with its ruins dating back to the 6th century, where the Monks wrote The Annals of Inisfallen. Finishing point of the tour is Ross Castle, the 13th century castle home of the great chieftain – O’Donoghue. 

During the boat trip, you will be told the history and legends of the area by the boatmen.

• Option 2:

For the person that would like to walk or cycle and explore the area at their own time, boats leave the main pier, in front of Ross Castle, every morning between 9.30 a.m. and 11.00 a.m.


  • €180 EUR per day

Price includes fuel.


  • €20 EUR


  • Type: Canal Boat
  • Capacity: 12 People
  • Rental Minimum: 1 day
  • Cancellation: Full Refund 1 Day Prior

Rental Requirements

Additional Fees:

  • Food

Frequently Asked Questions:

• When does the tour operate?

  • March to October

• Can you walk through the Gap of Dunloe?

  • Yes, the walk takes approx. 2.5 hours from Kate Kearney’s Cottage to Lord Brandon’s Cottage. (6.5 miles; 10 kms)

• Can we be collected by bus?

  • Yes, PLEASE NOTE: Arrangements can be made if transport to Ross Castle or Kate Kearney's Cottage is required.

• Is the tour weather permitting?

  • Yes

• Is a tour of Ross Castle included?

  • No, as when you arrive into Ross Castle by boat in the afternoon, the bus is waiting for you.

• Is lunch provided?

  • Lunch is available at Lord Brandon’s Cottage, but is not included in the price of the tour.

• What type of clothing should we wear?

  • Comfortable walking shoes if you intend to walk through the pass, also some rain wear, in case of a shower. Sometimes it can be quite cool on the Lower Lake in the afternoon.

• Is there a Student/Family rate?

  • No.

• Is there an alternative to walking up through the Gap of Dunloe?

  • Yes, there are two alternatives – a) by bicycle, which can be brought from Ross Castle (only) in the boat and b) by Pony/Trap which are available at the beginning of the tour at Kate Kearney’s Cottage, arrangements can be made to have pony/traps available at Lord Brandon’s Cottage should you decide to start the trip at Ross Castle in the morning.

• Is there an additional charge to take bicycles on the boat?

  • No, but there are bicycle rentals in the Town Centre and also nearby on Muckross Road.

• What is a Pony/Trap?

  • It is a pony-drawn carriage which takes four people.

• How long does the boat trip take?

  • Approximately one and a half hours.

• Can we leave our car where we meet the bus?

  • Yes, we have free car parking facilities here at Old Weir Lodge if you decide to come here, alternatively, you can be collected from your accommodation if it is within a 2 ml. radius of the Town Centre. The bus will return you back again after the tour.

• What major sights of the Killarney area can we see?

  • Through the pass, the rugged, spectacular, mountainous beauty of the world-famous Gap of Dunloe, with its numerous Lakes and Valleys. Time to explore around Lord Brandon’s Cottage, which is surrounded, be Oak trees and colourful wild Rhododendron Trees, which bloom in May/June. Journeying down through the three Lakes, and two rivers, on the Upper Lake you pass Coleman’s Eye, the Elephant Rock. Pass under the oldest bridge in Ireland – The Old Weir Bridge, where, water levels permitting, you “shoot the rapids”!


  • Life jackets/required safety gear
  • Wheel steering
  • Outboard Engine

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