Tour 1 Killarney: Ross Castle - Ross Island - Prehistoric Copper Mines - the Cave Man - Flora & Fauna - Spectacular viewing points of the lakes and mountains
This is a very popular route as it includes a guided tour of a medieval castle, prehistoric copper mines, a bat cave, spectacular close up views of Killarney lakes and mountains and a fascinating insight into local flora and fauna.
The tour begins at Ross Castle on the shores of Loch Léin, Killarney. Here you will be given a guided tour of the restored medieval castle (15th century), the O'Donoghue clan fortress, learning all about the lifestyle of an Irish chieftain. The castle tour takes approximately 40 minutes.
This is followed by a guided woodland walk through Ross Island (accessed by bridge). Ross Island is a very special part of Killarney National Park and offers majestic views of the lakes and mountains. Along the route I will introduce you to some of the interesting flora, telling you about their traditional culinary and medicinal uses and their place in Irish folklore and Irish history.
Ross Island is also very rich in fauna, including Japanese Sika Deer, Irish Red Deer, and an array of bird, butterfly and other native species.
The highlight of the walk is the prehistoric copper mines, dating to c. 2,400 BC. I will be telling you about the history of the mines, how they made copper at that time, the daily life style of these people, and showing you the site of their settlement. We will discuss the various artifacts produced with metal from these mines. You will also learn how these mines influenced Ireland's transition from the Neolithic (Stone Age) to the Bronze Age Beaker culture, which was Ireland's prehistoric industrial revolution.
Length of walk: approximately 3 miles (5kms).
Time: 3-4 hrs approximately.
Terrain: Woodland paths.
Footwear: Boots advisable.
Cost: 40 euro per person, group rates available. Price includes the tour of Ross Castle.
To contact Neil, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call +353 (0) 87 702 3661.