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Kerry is Europe's second-best place for family holidays - Lonely Planet

Keys to the Kingdom

Published 17/06/2015 | 00:03

Kerry: Lonely Planet's No.2 place for family holidays in Europe
Kerry: Lonely Planet's No.2 place for family holidays in Europe
Ross Castle, Killarney. National Geographic Traveler features Kerry as its Feb/March 2015 cover story.
National Geographic Traveler Cover, Feb/March 2015

Travel bible Lonely Planet has named Kerry as its No.2 spot in Europe for family holidays.

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The Kingdom ranks just behind Kent in Lonely Planet's Best in Europe 2015, an online guide to "the most compelling destinations on the continent" this summer.

"Mysterious islands off a craggy coastline; mist-wreathed mountains and lakes; castles, abbeys and other ruins to explore… no wonder County Kerry appeals to the imagination of travellers of all ages," it says.

Lonely Planet’s Best in Europe 2015 ranges from oh-so-cool cities to ravishing beaches and places tailor-made for family fun, as selected by its European experts.

Europe’s 10 Best Places for Family Holidays:

  1. Kent, England, UK
  2. Co. Kerry, Ireland
  3. Black Forest, Germany
  4. Budapest, Hungary
  5. Vorarlberg, Austria
  6. Åland Archipelago, Finland
  7. Ibiza, Spain
  8. Normandy, France
  9. Skomer and Marloes Sands, Wales, UK
  10. Bohinj, Slovenia

Kerry "is perfect for children (and adults) with a sense of adventure," it says.

Lonely Planet recommends taking the short ferry ride to Great Blasket Island, horse-riding on Rosbeigh beach, surfing or taking "an epic journey" through Killarney National Park as experiences for families to enjoy in the Kingdom.

Dingle Peninsula and the Ring of Kerry are commended for the roadside attractions laid on "every few miles" to keep younger visitors engaged.

"Oh, and while you're there, don’t forget a child-pleasing side trip to see Fungie, the wild bottlenose dolphin that has been visiting Dingle Harbour regularly for more than 30 years," it adds.

Earlier this year, National Geographic Traveler (below, inset) made Kerry a cover star, with a shot of Ross Castle advertising an 11-page feature inside.

nat geo kerry.jpg
Kerry: A National Geographic cover star in 2015

Lonely Planet has also been showing Ireland a lot of love lately, including it on its Top 10 countries to visit in 2015, and listing Kilkenny's Smithwick's Experience as one of its hottest attractions for 2015.

However, Ireland does not feature on its new list of 10 Best Places in Europe (topped by Akureyri, Iceland) or Europe's Top 10 beaches (No.1: Jaz Beach, Montenegro).

“The destinations have been chosen by our team of European experts," said Lonely Planet Editorial Director, Tom Hall. "Some may be surprising, some are definitely under the radar, but all of them are great places to visit right now.”

Lonely Planet is giving away free PDF chapters for the top place in each category, including tips on where to eat, drink, sleep and explore.

You can download them at

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