The Dingle Peninsula—one of Ireland’s most scenic regions—sits on the southwest coast in County Kerry. The peninsula’s transportation hub, and a good place to start your visit, is the small city of Tralee. With regional trains and several national roads convening in Tralee, it’s easy to visit the Dingle Peninsula from many major cities in Ireland.
Limerick is the closest major city and conveniently set near Shannon Airport, Ireland’s western international airport. It’s also a great starting point if you’re interested in following a portion of the Wild Atlantic Way. In terms of driving distance, the city of Cork is about the same as Limerick.
Despite the distance, you can also visit the Dingle Peninsula from Dublin. The east and west coasts of Ireland are well-connected; but if coming from Dublin, it’s best to plan at least one night on the Dingle Peninsula.
From Limerick (Shannon Airport)
Duration: 1.5 - 3 hours
Connected by national road N21, the Dingle Peninsula is just southwest of Limerick and Shannon Airport. There are a few options to make the journey, but many travelers opt to go by car (either rental or private transfer) in order to enjoy the scenery of County Kerry. If you’d like to experience the famous Wild Atlantic Way, you can connect to it in Foynes on the Shannon Estuary. You’ll pass by the Bromore Cliffs and Fenit Beach before reaching Tralee.
Ireland’s regional bus service, Bus Éireann, offers a few direct departures from Limerick to Tralee. If coming from Shannon Airport, you’ll just need to connect once in Limerick’s main bus terminal. You can also reach Tralee by train, but keep in mind that the routes aren’t direct and require two connections (one at the Limerick Junction station and another in Mallow).
Once in Tralee, it’s best to enjoy the Dingle Peninsula by car. The scenery is truly exceptional, especially along Slea Head Drive, over Conor’s Pass, and to the Blasket Islands via passenger ferry. Main buses run as far as the town of Dingle, and many private tours can take you all around the peninsula. Smaller, regional buses connect some of the other villages, but check the tourist office in Tralee or Dingle as the schedules can be restricted.
If you’re interested in Ireland’s popular walking and hiking trails, the Dingle Peninsula is home to some of the best. This 6-8-day itinerary maps out hiking from town-to-town via the Dingle Way.
Duration: 2 - 2.5 hours
In the opposite direction is Cork, which is connected to Tralee via national roads N20 and N21/72. Rental cars and private transfers are great options for this route as well. But just like traveling from Limerick, you can also opt for the train and/or bus.
Direct buses depart regularly from Cork’s main bus station, Parnell Place, and connect in Tralee in about two hours. With a similar travel time, the train also offers direct routes. Note that some departures take about 2.5 hours and require a connection in Mallow.
For travel between Tralee and the Dingle Peninsula, see the previous option.
Duration: 1.5 - 7 hours
Dublin is well-connected to Ireland’s west coast. Major highways traverse the heart of the country’s Midlands Region and connect the capital city with Tralee. If driving, you’ll reach the Dingle Peninsula via Limerick, so you can also connect to the Wild Atlantic Way on this route.
Trains are another option, connecting the two cities in about four hours via the town of Mallow. Bus times are a bit longer at seven hours, with one connection in Cork. The fastest option, however, is flying. Ireland's airline, Aer Lingus, operates two daily flights from Dublin to Kerry Airport. The flight time is about one hour and the airport is just a 20-minute taxi from Tralee.
For better details of the journey, check out How to Get from Dublin to Dingle Town. For travel between Tralee and the Dingle Peninsula, see the first option.