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11 Of The Best Things To Do In Tralee (And Plenty Of Places To See Nearby)

11 Of The Best Things To Do In Tralee (And Plenty Of Places To See Nearby)

If you’re in search of the best things to do in Tralee, you’ve landed in the right place.

Although towns like Dingle, Kenmare and Killarney tend to get all of the attention from those visiting Kerry, Tralee has an awful lot going for it.

Founded in the 13th century, Tralee has had an eventful life, particularly during the Irish War of Independence.

The town boasts walks, history, a lively food and pub scene and heaps of attractions.

The best things to do in Tralee

Blennerville Windmill

Photos via Shutterstock

The first section of our guide on what to do in Tralee focuses solely on things to do in the town itself (bar the beaches – we’ve put drive-times in for them!).

Below, you’ll find windmills and great food to water parks, pubs and things to do in Tralee for families.

1. Start your visit with something tasty from Yummy Cafe Market

Yummy Cafe Market

Photos via Yummy Cafe Market on FB

If you’re wondering what to do in Tralee that’ll get you fired up for a day of exploring, nip into Yummy Cafe and grab something tasty to-go.

You’ll find this place tucked down a side street in the middle of town where its rustic interior boasts plenty of character.

There’s everything from ice cream and breakfast burritos to homemade granola pots, brekkie baps and plenty more

2. Then hit Tralee Bay Wetlands Eco & Activity Park

Tralee Bay Wetlands Eco & Activity Park

Photos via Tralee Bay Wetlands on FB

The Eco-tourism wave that’s taking many parts of the world by storm is very 21st century and they’re fully embracing it over in Tralee.

Located on the fringes of town, Tralee Bay Wetlands Eco & Activity Park is a unique escape that’s over 3,000 hectares in size.

Explore the flora and fauna of the area on a boat tour, a boardwalk or from the 20-metre high viewing tower.

There’s also plenty of activities for more active visitors, including a climbing wall and water zorbing, which make it one of the best things to do in Tralee with kids.

This place will suit those of you looking for things to do in Tralee for families or a large group of friends.

3. Spend a rainy morning at Kerry County Museum

Kerry County Museum

Photos via Kerry County Museum on FB

It’s one thing to see the beauty of Kerry; it’s another to truly know about the county. Opened in 1991, Kerry County Museum has been one of the top things to do in Tralee for over 30 years.

Housed in the Ashe Memorial Hall in the centre of town, the award-winning museum covers Kerry history from the bronze age to the present day.

One of the best exhibits is the duelling pistols used by 19th-century politician Daniel O’Connell, also known by the rather cool nickname ‘The Liberator’.

If you’re wondering what to do in Tralee when it’s raining, pop Kerry County Museum on you to-visit-sharpish list.

4. And a fine one at one of the many nearby beaches

Banna Beach

Photos via Shutterstock

There’s endless beaches near Tralee, and many of them are under a 30-minute spin away. Here’s some of the closest to take a spin out to:

  • Banna Beach (20-minute drive)
  • Camp Beach (20-minute drive)
  • Ballyheigue Beach (25-minute drive)
  • Castlegregory Beach (30-minute drive)
  • Ballybunion Beach (30-minute drive)

5. Take a tour of Blennerville Windmill

Blennerville Windmill

Photos via Shutterstock

Ireland’s largest working windmill and visible for miles, Blennerville Windmill is an imposing landmark in Tralee Bay.

Constructed in 1800 but rendered obsolete by various technological advances within 100 years, it fell into disrepair in the 20th century but was lovingly restored during the 1980s and reopened in 1990.

21 metres high and notable for being the only windmill on the Wild Atlantic Way, arrive late in the day for some cracking sunset photo opportunities.

6. Or sample some of the town’s excellent food scene

Quinlans Tralee

Photos via Quinlans on FB

There’s some incredible restaurants in Tralee for those of you looking to get stuck into the local food scene.

For exceptional pub grub with a twist head to Kirbys Brogue Inn. For a banging bit of sea food, take the short spin out of the town to the Oyster Tavern.

There’s also the excellent II Pomo Doro for those of you hankering Italian and the very popular Gally’s Bar (see our 2024 Tralee food guide for more).

7. Head for a saunter around Tralee Town Park

Tralee Town Park

Photo by Martina Kerins via Ireland’s Content Pool

Situated just off Denny Street and known locally as ‘The Green’, Tralee Town Park covers 35 acres and is one of Ireland’s largest urban parks.

A great spot for a stroll at any time of year, it also contains the famous rose garden and a bunch of interesting statues and monuments to notable locals.

If you’re visitng Kerry County Museum, make sure you check in here too as it’s just next door. 

8. Hit the water at Tralee Aqua Dome

Tralee Aqua Dome

Photos via Tralee Aqua Dome on FB

This is another one for those of you in search of things to do in Tralee with kids. Occasionally, just occasionally, the weather in Ireland doesn’t behave itself and indoor activities become highly welcome.

And if you’re too energetic to sit around all day, then Tralee’s Aqua Dome could be the lively diversion you need.

A huge water park with flumes, slides, rapids and saunas, it’s a class way to see out a rainy day whether you’re with friends or have the family in tow.

9. Catch a show at Siamsa Tíre, National Folk Theatre

Siamsa Tíre, National Folk Theatre

Photo via Siamsa Tíre on Facebook

For the uninitiated, head to Siamsa Tíre to get an engaging window into the mystical world of Irish folklore and legend.

Bringing it to life through music, song and dance, Ireland’s National Folk Theatre is based here and celebrates the country’s traditional art forms.

Catch original productions from the resident group of trained performers if you’re in Tralee between May and September.

If you’re looking for things to do in Tralee when it’s raining, Siamsa Tíre is a handy little place to drop into where you can whittle away an evening.

10. Kick-back in one of Tralee’s trad bars

Kirbys Brogue Inn

Photos via Kirbys Brogue Inn on FB

There’s some mighty pubs in Tralee and, although there’s plenty of ‘new’ style bars, it’s the town’s trad pubs that we keep going back to.

Our go-to in the town is Paddy Mac’s Pub, however, the Greyhound, Betty’s, Baily’s Corner and Sean Ogs are all worth of your attention (see our Tralee pubs guide for more).

Things to do near Tralee

Ballybunion beaches

Photos via Shutterstock

OK, so we’ve tackled things to do in Tralee – now, it’s time to look at the many things to see and do near Tralee.

As mentioned earlier, Tralee is home to a clatter of the best places to visit in Kerry, so if you make it your base for a night or two, you’ll have an endless number of things to see closeby. 

1. Tackle one of many nearby walks

Ballyseedy walks

Photos via Shutterstock

You’ll find an almost endless number of walks in and around Tralee. Arguably the most popular is the Ballyseedy Woods Walk, but there’s plenty more to tackle. Here are some suggestions:

  • Ballyseedy Woods (10-minute drive)
  • Glanageenty Forest (20-minute drive)
  • Glanteenassig Forest Park (40-minute drive)
  • Mount Brandon (1 hour and 10-minute drive)

2. Explore the Dingle Peninsula

slea head drive dingle

Photo left: Adam Machowiak. Photo right: Irish Drone Photography (Shutterstock)

The stunning Dingle Peninsula is outstanding. There’s endless things to see and do here. One of the best ways to see a chunk of it is on the Slea Head Drive.

This is a circular route taking in some of Ireland’s mightiest scenery, historic sites, charming villages and twisting little roads.

The loop is about 30 miles long and we definitely encourage you not to rush it! A few spots along the way to not miss: Coumeenoole Beach, Blasket Islands, Three Sisters mountain peaks, the Sleeping Giant and Ballyferriter village.

3. Take a spin to Dingle Town (via Conor Pass)

conor pass dingle

Photo via Shutterstock

Dingle Town is well worth having a nosey around (see our guide on what to do in Dingle). It’s a buzzy little town that gets mobbed during the summer months, but it’s still worth nipping into.

One of the more unique ways to get to it from Tralee is via Conor Pass – a mountain pass that’s arguably one of the most unique roads in Ireland.

The views are outstanding but nervous drivers beware – this is a very narrow road.

4. Spend an afternoon by the sea at Ballybunion

Ballybunion Cliff Walk

Photos via Shutterstock

A 30-minute drive north of Tralee, it’s hard to find things to give out about when you’re in the coastal town of Ballybunion.

Not only is it free from industry, pollution and set in a gorgeous part of the world, there are tons of things to do as well!

Give the Ballybunion Cliff Walk a crack, see Ballybunion Castle and take a ramble along the various beaches in Ballybunion.

What great things to do in Tralee have we missed?

I’ve no doubt that there’s plenty of other activities in Tralee (and nearby!) that we’ve unintentionally left out of the guide above.

If you have a place that you’d like to recommend, let us know in the comments section below. Cheers!

FAQs about what to do in Tralee

We’ve had a lot of questions over the years asking about everything from ‘What to do in Tralee for families?’ to ‘Where’s best for a stroll?’.

In the section below, we’ve popped in the most FAQs that we’ve received. If you have a question that we haven’t tackled, ask away in the comments section below.

What are the best things to do in Tralee Town?

Visit Kerry County Museum Tralee Bay Wetlands Eco & Activity Park, Blennerville Windmill, Siamsa Tíre Theatre and Tralee Aqua Dome.

What is there to do near Tralee?

There’s a tonne of different things to do near Tralee, from the mighty Dingle Peninsula to the Iveragh Peninsula and much more.

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Christine Reid

Wednesday 22nd of September 2021

Very helpful tk you

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