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Coumeenoole Beach In Dingle: Walk, Parking + Swim Warning

Coumeenoole Beach In Dingle: Walk, Parking + Swim Warning

Coumeenoole Beach on the Dingle Peninsula is one of Kerry’s finest stretches of sand, but a visit comes with a warning.

Although the golden sand and often-tropical water looks inviting, there are dangerous currents at play here so swimming poses a real risk to your safety.

Located along the the Slea Head Drive, the turn off for Coumeenoole is easy to miss. Below, you’ll find a map with parking info and more.

Some quick need-to-knows about Coumeenoole Beach

Although Coumeenoole Beach is one of the more popular beaches on the Dingle Peninsula, it comes with several important need-to-knows:

1. Parking

There is parking for around 25 cars at Coumeenoole Beach (here on maps). You’ll find it quiet during winter and autumn and packed out in summer.

2. Swimming

Due to dangerous currents, it is not safe to swim at Coumeenoole Beach and there are many warnings signs in place. The bay catches the full force of the Atlantic waves which creates strong and unpredictable currents.

3. The wind

I’ve visited Coumeenoole on many occasions and on each visit I am always surprised at how powerful the winds are. On the plus side, this means you get to watch massive waves crashing against the coast. On the negative side, it may be too windy for some.

4. Ryan’s Daughter

Right beside the car park there’s a commemoration stone marking the site where the classic love story Ryan’s Daughter was filmed. The stone was erected in 1999, 30 years after the Oscar-winning epic was made.

About Coumeenoole Bay

Coumeenoole Beach

Photos via Shutterstock

One of the reasons that this is one of the best beaches in Kerry is due to its sheer uniqueness.

Green hills drop steadily down towards Coumeenoole Beach, ending in sheer cliffs and a steep drop to the Atlantic Ocean.

The pristine golden sand on this wild beach almost disappears at high tide, so it’s often the case that you can’t get down to the sand.

When you leave the car park, you’ll make your way down the narrow path – from this point, you’ll get a good eyeful of the Dingle coastline as the sand creeps into view

On stormy days, it’s not hard to see why two sloops form the Spanish Armada ended their days here in 1588.

The walk up to Dunmore Head

There’s a nice walk that starts from the parking area at the beach and that takes you up a steep grassy trail.

It’s around a 15-minute walk (can take longer if the wind is at full whack) and, when you reach the top, you’ll be treated to the view above.

You’ll need moderate fitness for this one and please avoid going anywhere near the edge – the wind is powerful and can easily tipple you!

Things to do near Coumeenoole Beach

slea head drive

So, the best thing to do after you leave Coumeenoole is to continue along the Slea Head Drive and take in the rest of the nearby attractions.

This’ll ensure you follow a logical route and finish back up in Dingle Town where you can grab a bite in one of the restaurants in Dingle (or a pint in one of the pubs in Dingle…).

Slea Head is home to some of the best places to visit in Kerry, including:

  • Dun Chaoin Pier (5-minute drive): Old pier with breath-taking views
  • The Blasket Islands (ferry leaves from Dun Chaoin): Islands steeped in history and offer glorious views
  • Wine Strand (20-minute drive): One of the finest beaches near Dingle
  • Mount Brandon (36-minute drive): A tough hike that requires around 5 hours
  • Gallarus Oratory (23-minute drive): An ancient Irish church that looks no more like a church

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