Bed and Breakfasts in Kenmare, County Kerry
Town and Country Homes Association represent over 1000 quality approved Bed and Breakfast accommodations in every county in Ireland including County Kerry. Many Bed and Breakfasts are located in Kenmare. Our B&B's in Kenmare offer comfort and value for money and you can be guaranteed of a warm welcome and kind hospitality when staying in Town and Country Homes accommodation anywhere in Kerry. Whether you wish to stay in town or in the country, we have a bed and breakfast to suit you in Kenmare, County Kerry.
Kenmare (Irish: An Neidín) is a small town in the south of County Kerry, Ireland. The Irish name for the town 'An Neidín' translates into English as 'The Little Nest'. The name Kenmare is the anglicised form of Ceann Mhara "head of the sea", which refers to the furthest point inland reached by the sea. Kenmare is located at the head of Kenmare Bay sometimes called the Kenmare River (An Ribhéar) where the Roughty River (An Ruachtach) flows into the sea, and at the junction of the Iveragh Peninsula and the Beara Peninsula. The traditional Irish name of the bay was Inbhear Scéine from the celtic inver, which is recorded in the 11th Century narrative Lebor Gabála Érenn as the arrival point of the mythological Irish ancestor Partholón. Nearby towns and villages are Ardgroom, Glengarriff, Kilgarvan, Killarney, and Sneem.
A mass famine grave for Kenmare victims exists in the area. The entire Kenmare area was granted to the English scientist, Sir William Petty by Oliver Cromwell as part payment for completing the mapping of Ireland, the Down Survey in 1656. He laid out the modern town circa 1670. Like William Petty, a previous surveyor of Ireland (1584), Sir Valentine Browne, ancestor of the Earl of Kenmare was granted some lands in County Kerry during the resulting plantation, the Munster Plantation. The three main streets that form a triangle in the centre of the town are called Main Street (originally William Street, after Sir William), Henry Street (after the son of William) and Shelbourne Street (Henry Petty became the first Earl of Shelburne). This name was also later applied to Shelbourne, Dublin. However, the area has more ancient roots. There is one of the biggest stone circles in Ireland very close to the town, showing occupation by Celtic peoples long before English occupation. The circle has 15 stones around the circumference with a bolder dolmen in the centre. Vikings are said to have raided the area around the town which at that time was called Ceann Mhara, which means "head of the sea" in Irish. The convent in the town, the Poor Clare Sisters, was founded in 1861 by Sister Mary Frances Cusack, who was also an author and publisher of many books. The convent established a lace-working industry and Kenmare Lace became noted worldwide.The town is noted for receiving Ireland's tidiest town award in 2000. The Catholic Church in the town contains stained glass from Franz Mayer & Co. The town library is one of the Carnegie Libraries funded by Andrew Carnegie. It opened in 1915, and the architect was R.M. Butler.
Kenmare lies on two of the more famous Irish tourist attractions, the Ring of Kerry and the Ring of Beara, approximately 32 kilometres (20 miles) from Killarney. As a result it is a very popular tourist destination and many of the businesses in the area cater to tourists.
Kenmare was home to English composer Ernest John Moeran for a number of years up to his death and a local bar is named after him. Gaelic footballer Mickey 'Ned' O'Sullivan is from the town, while another footballer, Pat Spillane, comes from nearby Templenoe. Current Kerry GAA player Paul O'Connor hails from Kenmare. Kenmare is also the home of Irish Olympic slalom skier Thos Foley. Diplomat Con Cremin was also from Kenmare. NY construction magnate Patrick Harrington was also from Kenmare. Anna McPartlin grew up in Kenmare, in 2007 she wrote the novel Apart from the Crowd, with setting in Kenmare.
Due to its location at the centre of a large agricultural area, Kenmare served as the local market town. Until the establishment of an auction mart in the early 1990s, the approximately monthly fair days were a time when farmers would stand their animals in the streets for sale to visiting stock dealers. The only fair which continues to be held is that of August 15th, which coincides with the Catholic Holy Day of Obligation marking the Assumption of Mary. The day attracts large crowds of locals and visitors and is the busiest day of the year in Kenmare.
There are daily bus-services to Killarney. There is also a daily service to Cork in the summer months. Kenmare connects to Killarney on the mountainous and scenic N71 route via Molls Gap and Ladies View or alternatively on the more convenient route via Kilgarvan. N71 forms part of the Ring of Kerry. Kenmare also lies on the N70 south-Cork route to Glengarriff. Kenmare railway station opened on 4 September 1893 and finally closed on 1 February 1960.
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