The Ring of Kerry
The Ring of Kerry
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Glenmore Museum & Heritage Centre, formerly Glenmore Primary School

Glenmore School now Glenmore Heritage CentreGlenmore Museum & Heritage Centre, formerly Glenmore Primary School.

What was once a primary school built in 1893 now plays home to a little heritage centre. The museum or heritage centre is located in the valley of Glenmore some 9km from Waterville overlooking Waterville lake. It is an idyllic setting today but was probably a remote and harsh location when it served its original purpose.

Church Island

Waterville lake home to Church islandChurch Island Waterville a 12th Century Church on an Island.

One of the least visited and thus more original sites in Waterville is that of Church Island. Church island sits in the middle of Lough Currane (Waterville Lake) and can only be accessed by hiring a boat locally. On the island you will find the remains of an old Irish monastery dating back to around the 12th century built in Romanesque style. You don’t have to be into architecture to appreciate the craftsmanship and dedication that went into the building of the church. Also located on the island is St Fininas Cell believed to be associated with the sixth century saint known as Fionan Cam (Fionan the Squint-eyed).

The Charlie Chaplin Connection

Charlie Chaplin WatervilleThe town was a favourite holiday spot of Charlie Chaplin and his family who used to stay in The Butler Arms Hotel. They first visited the town in 1959 and came back every year for over ten years. There is a statue of him in the centre of the village in his memory. The community has also obtained permission from the Charlie Chaplin estate to hold an annual Charlie Chaplin Comedy Film Festival in the spirit of Charlie Chaplin, the first festival was held in 2011. The festival is usually held in August each year.

Waterville

Waterville Village IrelandStunningly situated between the wild Atlantic Ocean and the fresh water lake of Lough Currane sits the beautiful village of Waterville. It is shameful to even contemplate the tens of thousands of people who have visited Waterville, photographed Charlie Chaplin, walked the sea front and departed this jewel oblivious to the fact that Waterville’s second expanse of water (Lough Currane) is only a mere “stones throw” behind them.  Waterville is unique in the fact that it is the only village on the Ring of Kerry that is actually right on the coast (you can taste the salt water on the main street on a calm day) and sandwiched on a strip of ground between lake and ocean.

An Coirean (Gaelic) translates as “the little whirlpool”, a reference some believe to the shape of the bay (Ballinskelligs bay) on which the town sits. The Waterville area and Ballinskelligs Bay play an important part in the mythology of ancient Ireland. According to the Book of Invasions written about 1000 AD, Cessair, the grand-daughter of Noah, landed in Ballinskelligs Bay after the flood and became Ireland's first invader. Here too, the last of the mythical invaders, the Milesians settled in 1700 BC and reportedly left behind many of the archaeological sites found in the area. These rich legends along with the earliest memories of Kerry history combine to form a mystical aura that visitors to Waterville can sense even today. But like all things in this world you have to search to find the true gems.

Charlie Chaplin WatervilleAnyone who visits the village of Waterville should walk the pathway (known locally as the promenade) which stretches right along the seafront. If you want to extend your walk a little and see one of the finer beaches in the area then continue to walk along the cliff road (to the north of the village) and walk for approximately a mile to reach the beach. Here also you will find the famous Waterville Golf Links.

Waterville Images

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Lonely Planet Ireland Guide

lonely planet ireland guide

The Ring of Kerry Fishing

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