Whats On In County Kerry During May

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The month of May was named for the Greek Goddess Maia, who was identified with the Roman era goddess of fertility, Bona Dea, whose festival was held in May.

Festivals are beginning to start in County Kerry during this month of May.

May / Mí Bealtaine

28 April - 01 May

International Rally Of The Lakes

28 April - 01 May

Cuckoo Walking Festival Tarbert

29 April - 01 May

Listowel Military Tattoo

28th April - 01

Portmagee Annual Set Dancing & Music Weekend


Ballinclare Horse Fair


Féile na Bealtaine, Dingle

02 May - 01 August

Cill Rialaig Summer Arts Festival

05 -07

Sweets of May, Trad Music & Set Dancing, Tralee


Darkness into Light Walk, Killarney


3 Climbs Cycle


Kingdom County Fair, Tralee

08 May - 23 September

Festival of Folk, Tralee


Lakes of Killarney Marathon


Wild Atlantic Challenge Kenmare

14 - 16

Horse Racing, Killarney

18 - 21

Fleadh Cheoil Tralee

18 - 21

Fleadh Cheoil Chiarrai (Tralee)

26 - 28

Killarney Beerfest


Point to Point Racing, Ballybunion


Ring of Beara Cycle Kenmare

30 - 04 June

Listowel Writers Week


Féile na Bealtaine Arts Festival - Co Kerry 

This year the festival is on Thursday 27th April - Monday 1st May 2017

Féile na Bealtaine is the Dingle Peninsula arts, music, drama and literature festival held at the end of April  and beginning of May every year. 

Féile na Bealtaine is a celebration of an old Celtic festival, as the Celtic year was divided in two - Ó Samhain go Bealtaine. Ó Bealtaine go Samhain. It is a fiery mix of the arts and politics.

Is í Féile na Bealtaine féile ealaíne, ceoil, dráma agus litríochta an Daingin ag deiredh mhí Aibreáin gach bliain. Is ceiliúradh seanfhéile ceilteacha í mar bhí an bhliain cheilteach roinnte i ndá chuid - Ó Samhain go Bealtaine. Ó Bealtaine go Samhain. Is meascán bríomhar í an fhéíle, idir na healaíona agus an pholaitíocht.

The Féile team is busy putting together a cracking programme for Féile Na Bealtaine 2017. It promises to have the widest ever range of cultural events. Come and join us in this cacophony of literature, art, music, dance, drama, film, politics and sport in this most westerly part of Europe. Watch this space for more details.

Fáilte go dtí an 19ú bliain d’Fhéile na Bealtaine agus fáilte – le Bel Tine - go dtí an samhradh! Beidh raon ócáide níos leithne ná ríomh againn sa bhliain 2017. Ba mhaith linn cur le fuinneamh agus saol na leithinse le linn an deireadh seachtaine fada seo. Tá sé mar fheidhm againn go mbaineann sibh an méid taitnimh agus sásaimh is a fuaireamar agus an fhéile a eagrú againn i rith an gheimhridh.

Feile na Bealtaine aspires to build on the rich arts and culture that exists on the peninsula and to extend and broaden our artistic horizons - above all to entertain and to invigorate. The Dingle Peninsula has a rich cultural heritage. The Festival's aims are to highlight and promote this natural heritage, and to introduce the arts and artists from other parts of Ireland and the world to all of the people of Corca Dhuibhne and its bilingual culture.

Feile na Bealtaine is a celebration of an old Celtic festival, as the Celtic year was divided in two - Ó Samhain go Bealtaine. Ó Bealtaine go Samhain. It is a fiery mix of the arts and politics.


Address: Dingle Peninsula, Co. Kerry, Republic of Ireland

Telephone: +353 (0)66 915 1082

Web: http://feilenabealtaine.ie/home/ 

2017 International Rally Of The Lakes 

Friday April 28th - Monday May 1st 2017

2017 International Rally Of The Lakes

Friday April 28th - Sunday May 1st 2017 This 2 day tarmac rally sees competitors from home & abroad flocking to Killarney every May Bank Holiday weekend. The drivers scream through some of the most beautiful, rugged countryside in Ireland on some of the skinniest and treacherous roads Rally Of The Lakes

Action gets underway with a ceremonial start in Killarney’s town centre on Friday night where organiser, Killarney and District Motor Club have laid on a family entertainment evening where fans can meet the leading drivers, while watching action from previous events on a gig screens set to a back drop of live music provided my local bands and djs. The rally finishes up at The Gleneagle on Sunday evening with an awards ceremony in the INEC later that night.

Cuckoo Walking Festival 2017

Friday 28th April - Monday 1st May 2017

Venue: Tarbert, Co. Kerry

The Cuckoo Walking Festival brings participants over bogland and farmland in North Kerry and West Limerick, to enjoy the fantastic views of the Shannon Estuary from Foynes right out to the mouth of the Shannon.



Cuckoo Walking Festival
Republic of Ireland

Phone: +353 86 2120736

Email: laniganmp@gmail.com

Web: Tarbert.ie


Listowel Military Tattoo

Friday 29th – Sunday 1st May 2017

Annual event remembering all Irish men and women that have fought in domestic or foreign forces from WWI to present day.

May Bank Holiday Weekend. Firday 29th April to Sunday 1st of May.

Saturday 30th. re-enactors will preform in a battle scene depicting a French town being invaded by German forces. Saturday evening a Military Colour Party will take part in a ceremony to honour Irishmen and Irishwomen who gave their lives in the service of world peace.
Sunday 4th. The town will be liberated by Allied forces after a battle scene with the German forces. Sunday night a 1940's "Hangar" dance.Music by the fabulous Bombshell Belles.

A display by the The Irish Military Vehicles Group of some of the 30 vehicles held by their members will be held in the Square on Saturday 30th and Sunday 1st.

Monday we have a Vintage Car Rally starting at 11am in the Square and the cars will return to the Square after a 2 hour drive around North Kerry.

Lots of fun for the Children in the Square on Monday with a Slide and a Bouncy Castle, lots more to be announced later.

The Arcade, William Street, Listowel

Tel.: +353 (0) 68 21639

Mob.: +353 (0) 87 7986155

Email: stackslistowel@gmail.com


                      Ballinclare Horse Fair 

                                        Sunday 7th May 2017

Ballinclare horse fair in Annascaul is said to be the oldest horse fair in Ireland.

There are two Ballinclare horse fairs each year, said to be the oldest horse fair in Kerry. The first is on the First Sunday in May and the second is on the first Sunday in October.

THE normally quiet village of Annascaul becomes thronged with people, traders and livestock for the revived Ballinclare Fair on these Sunday`s. Both sides of the village street are lined with trade stands with everything from saddles, clothing and tools to furniture, food and crafts on show and on sale.

Annascaul Village is in some regards considered the gateway village to the Dingle Peninsula. The parish population is around 1500 people. The village has a pottery shop (handmade ceramics), two newsagents, lots of accommodation providers, one of which is a guest-house with café/restaurant. 

Contact: Balinclare Horse Fair

Portmagee Traditional Irish Set Dancing & Music Weekend - Co Kerry 

Friday 28th April – Monday 1st May 2017

Portmagee’s 28th Annual May Bank Holiday Weekend in South Kerry


Fri 1st May: 9.30pm: Traditional music, set dancing and singing in The Bridge Bar with Moorings Ceili Band

Sat 2nd May:
11am to 3pm – Set Dance Workshop with Betty McCoy & Carmel Kearns followed by Two-Hand Dances (including snack lunch served in the Community Centre),
8pm to 11pm – Mighty Céilí in Community Centre with Tim Joe & Ann O’Riordan
approx 10pm – Moorings Ceili Band play for set dancing in The Bridge Bar

Sun 3rd May:
12:30pm – Traditional music Session in The Bridge Bar – local & visiting
musicians, singers & storytellers
approx 3:30pm – Moorings Ceili Band sing & play for set dancing in The Bridge Bar
from 7:00pm – Traditional music, set dancing & singing in The Bridge Bar with Tim Joe & Ann O’Riordan and Moorings Céili Band

Betty McCoy & Carmel Kearns

Weekend Package – (single supplement applies)
Includes: 3 nights B&B, 2 eve meals, entertainment, céilí & workshops
Contact : Betty – 01 2956497 Carmel – 087 2960301 or Gerard – 066 9477108
email: portmageedanceworkshop@gmail.com

Web: Moorings

Surf n Turf Festival, Ballybunion - Co Kerry 

It is normally on in May, but no info as yet about this years festival 

Surf 'n' Turf is a music, food and surfing festival based in Ballybunion, Co. Kerry. 


Website: Destination Ballybunion


Co Kerry

Killarney Races 

Sunday 14th May – Tuesday 16th May 2017

Killarney Racecourse proudly boasts the title of the most scenic racecourse in Ireland. It is situated within walking distance of Killarney town centre and has panoramic view of Killarney National Park, Ross Castle, The Lakes of Killarney and the McGillcuddy Reeks.

Its party time all Summer long in Killarney and there is an energy to the area that has seeped into the pores of every facet of life there. The racecourse is no exception, providing no small amount of high quality racing to fulfill the dual role of both family fun day out and satisfying punter-friendly competition.

Killarney has some of the best hotels, restaurants and night life in Ireland coupled with the best scenery in all of Ireland.

Contact: Tel.:+353 (0) 064 6631125

Website: http://killarneyraces.ie/

Address: Killarney Race Course Ross Road

Co Kerry,

Republic Of Ireland


The Kingdom County Fair 

(Should be round about) Sunday 7th May 2017

The Kingdom County Fair is held annually usually on the second Sunday in May and boasts

- a prize fund of over €40,000 in total prize money. - 2,500 square feet of high quality indoor stands. - 10,000 Metres squared of outdoor stands.

Based in north Kerry, The Kingdom County Fair takes place at Ballybeggan on the outskirts of Tralee Town - a hospitable locality which opens its doors to... History of the Kingdom County Fair

The first Industrial Show (Kingdom County Fair) was held in 1948. Three venues were used Theatre Royal (now Fabric Nightclub) for indoor exhibits.

Old Infirmary Grounds (now Gleasures Sawmills) for outdoor stands.

Town Park for show jumping. The 1955 show was described by The Kerryman newspaper as “ the largest and most ambitious industrial, agricultural, trade and sporting feature ever held in a provincial centre” In the 1960’s many fringe events were added to make the show a family day out. The show continued to grow during the 70’s and then lack of space for all the events resulted in a move to the present venue, Ballybeggan Racecourse in 1982. In the 90’s the show was ranked the 5th biggest in the 32 counties according to the Irish Shows Association.

In 1993 Fergie, The Duchess of York took part in the show jumping at the show and added a new dimension to the section, which now had household names such as Eddie Macken, Robert Splaine, Captain Con Power and the late Paul Darragh competing.

Over the last 60 years many shows have come and gone but Kingdom County Fair enters it’s 60th year still holding it’s place as one the premier shows in Ireland. Kingdom County Fair

Dingle Women's Mini Marathon Mion Mharatón na mBan An Daingin 

This is now on Monday June 5th 2017

The third annual Dingle Women's Mini Marathon will be held on Saturday, June 5th 2017 at 2pm.

The event, which is endorsed by a number of leading athletes, has become a permanent fixture on the schedule as the allure of running one of the most scenic routes in Ireland encourages participation. Event organisers explain that the Runs are intended to cater for people of all levels of fitness with walkers, joggers and runners being encouraged to take part.

The event is being run on a 'not for profit' basis and the beneficiaries are The National Breast Cancer Research Institute, The Saoirse Foundation - Liam's Lodge Project, and Dingle's Pobalscoil Chorca Dhuibhne Secondary School for the development of a running track and sports pitch.

Dingle Mini Marathon 



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Killarney Lakes Marathon

Killarney Saturday 13th May 2017

Welcome to the Lakes of Killarney Marathon. This will be the first full marathon to be held in Killarney since 1964. The Lakes Of Killarney Marathon is your chance to take part in either a full or half marathon run within the stunning Killarney National Park for a very competitive entry fee.

The race will be run with the full co-operation of the National Parks and Wildlife Service, Killarney Chamber of Commerce and Tourism, Killarney Town Council and Killarney Gardai. Our event partner for accommodation is the Castlerosse Hotel which is the location for the race start, lap end and race finish.

There are a choice of two options to take part beginning with the full marathon which comprises of 3 laps of a circuit within the grounds of the Knockreer Demesne and Ross Island with three ascents of the legendary Knockreer Hill. For the less adventurous there is also a half marathon which will take in one and a half laps of the same circuit with only one ascent of Knockreer Hill.

This is your chance to take part in the first running of what is sure to become a legendary marathon in the beautiful surroundings of Killarney. Entry is now open but hurry up as places for 2013 are limited to 300. The entry fee is unbeatable value at €35 for the full marathon, €25 for the half marathon. For this you will receive a bespoke finisher’s medal, a custom technical t-shirt, professional timing, a certified course under Athletics Ireland rules, water/ hydration/ food stops every 3km, race pacers, a well marked out course with lots of stewards and post race refreshments at the finish line. Checkout our FAQ page for any queries you may have.

Due to huge demand we are re-introducing the full marathon relay option.

We look forward to seeing you in Killarney in May.

The full & half events both start at 9AM 


Full Marathon Route:

1) Start on the main Killarney to Killorglin road 1.1 miles from the Castlerosse Hotel.

2) On turning into the Castlerosse there is a right turn into the car park and the start of the 3 laps.

3) Run over the incline beside the hotel and follow the road to Victoria Cottage.

4) Immediately after Victoria Cottage keep left through the trees and onto Knockreer Hill.

5) At the bottom of Knockreer Hill, near the cottage turn right into the park.

6) Run through the park to the hydration station near the bridge.

7) Turn right at the bridge and follow the River Walk and the lakeshore path all the way to Ross Castle.

8.) Run over the footbridge past the hydration station on to Ross Island. Ross Castle is on your right.

9) At the first Y-junction keep right and continue around the island to the T-junction with the lake on your right hand side.

10) Turn right at the T-junction and run past the copper mines.

11) Keep right at all junctions until you return to Ross Castle and the hydration station. Do not Cross the Bridge.

12) Turn left on to the Ross Road and continue until Reen Cottage (750m) where you will turn left into the Knockreer Demesne in Killarney National Park.

13) Run through the wood until you come to the hydration station near the bridge where you will turn right along the River Walk.

14) At the bridge turn left up a slight incline.

15) At the junction near Dinis Cottage turn right to face the cathedral.

16) After 30m, just after the tall laurel hedge, turn left. This will take will take you alongside the river and beside the playground.

17) Stay on this tree lined avenue (the Fossa way) all the way to the Castlerosse Hotel car park.

18) There is a sharp right turn, a sharp left turn and another sharp right within 30m as you return to the Castlerosse Hotel car park. The route through the car park takes you close to the wire of the tennis courts.

19) Repeat the loop twice more and the finish chute is through the centre of the car park.

Kerry Festival Of Pride

Should be around Monday 15th – Sunday 21st May 2017

These are the probable dates for this year`s Pride Festival in Tralee but check web-site below for any changes.

Kerry Festival of Pride was established in October 2012. The festival primarily embraces Kerry, the rural regions within Munster and then national and international LGBTQ pride tourists.

It began when several members of the LGBTQ community decided that Kerry needs to join its voice to the global celebration of rich diversity that exists nationally and internationally.

This yearly week of Kerry wide celebration, is a testament to the solidarity that the LGBTQ community holds with those within Kerry, who quietly and loudly acknowledge their Pride for Kerry's LGBTQ community in small ways every day.

·         It is an annual series of events which celebrate lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans*, queer, questioning (LGBTQ) life in County Kerry, Ireland.

·         It is an opportunity for the wider Kerry community to celebrate & recognise the diversity of people within County Kerry (Through the festival Kerry's LGBT community hopes to establish strong bonds of friendship and solidarity with all non LGBT individuals).


·         It made its debut: 20th - 26th May 2013. 


·         The festival aims to add to the diversity of pride events within the Republic of Ireland. It is taking a fresh approach on the idea of the traditional pride celebrated. The festival culminates in a family fun day on the Sunday. With the traditional parade event taking place on the Saturday afternoon.



Bed and Breakfast Kerry

Fleadh Cheoil Chiarraí - Co Kerry 
Wednesday 18th - Sunday 22nd May 2016 

The annual festival of Irish traditional music, song and dance, which highlights the work of Comhaltas Ceoltóirí Éireann in County Kerry.

Barr na Sraide CCE are to host Fleadh Cheoil Chiarraí 2016 in Tralee.


Website http://comhaltas.ie/locations/detail/munster


Address: Tralee Co Kerry, Republic of Ireland 

Ballybunion Point to Point - Horse Racing

This year it is on Saturday 28th May 2016

ALL roads lead to Gortnaskehy Ballybunion for the annual North Kerry Harriers Point-to-Point races. The thriving North Kerry Harriers club, which is in existence over 13 years, always expect a huge entry for their meeting, where they currently report the course in excellent condition, with good, safe ground for the run. 

Ballybunion Point to Point Horse Racing

A great day out for all keen horse racing enthusiasts on the lovely green land of Ballybunion

Ballybunion Point to Point Horse Racing Accommodation

Ballybunion Point to Point - Horse Racing is right across the road from Ballybunionguesthouse.com

For Accommodation in the heart of the horse racing call  on 0866000665

Bed and Breakfast Kerry

Sneem JFK 50 Mile Challenge 2017

Unfortunately the Sneem JFK 50 Mile Challenge will not be taking place this year 

The 2016 Sneem JFK 50 Mile Challenge will not take place on the weekend of the 22nd, 23rd & 24th May 2015. The Challenge was to complete 50miles (80km) in less than 20 hours. 

However I will keep the information on the page as hopefully it will take place next year in 2017.

The challenge starts at 05.00am sharp on Saturday morning 23rd May and continues right through until 01.00am on Sunday morning 24th May.

Final Closing Date for Registrations is Friday 15th May 2015. The registration fee is €tbc per person. There will be a mandatory briefing in Sneem Hotel at 8.00pm on Friday evening (22nd May) on safety requirements.

Application forms will be available shortly.

Details of training walks will be advertised locally and on the Sneem Walking Club and Sneem JFK 50 Mile Challenge pages on Facebook and Twitter.

The walk will start and end in Sneem village on the Ring of Kerry. It is a loop walk on national, secondary, regional and minor roads with three gradual inclines which are highlighted on the route map.

The challenge starts at 05.00am sharp on Saturday morning 24th May and continues right through until 01.00am on Sunday morning 25th May.

Final Closing Date for Registrations is Friday 15th May 2015. The registration fee will cover all running costs of the event including T-Shirts, Medals, Insurance, refreshments, Coast Guard and Civil Defence and we aim to keep costs to an absolute minimum.

Any remaining money from registration fees goes directly to our charities. There will be a mandatory briefing in Sneem Hotel at 8.00pm on Friday evening (22nd May) on safety requirements.



Listowel Writers Week - Co Kerry 

Wednesday 1st June - Sunday 5th June 2016 

Since its humble beginnings in 1971 ' Writer’s Week ' has grown to become one of Ireland’s leading literary festivals. From the beginning Writer’s Week pioneered the concept of the literary workshop and now hosts a total of ten workshops each year during its festival, dealing with all styles of writing. ' Writer's Week ' essentially aims to guide, direct and enthuse the emerging writer, befriend the established writer and provide a platform for their artistic output. The 2016 programme is being currently worked full details of which will be available soon!

Go To: http://writersweek.ie/

K-Fest Arts & Music 

Friday 3rd June – Monday 6t June 2016

Venue: Various venues in Killorglin Town, Co. Kerry


A new year and new bands for KF15! The first of which we are announcing is Sky Valley Mistress on Sunday May 31st (venue tbd). If you like your music to rock with a dose of blues we think this young band from Blackburn in the UK is one of the best around.


"K-Fest features more than 100 artists in 25 pop-up galleries, over 30 bands in bars and venues, spoken word events throughout the weekend and a fantastic film programme. 

With no holds barred when it comes to the visual arts, K-Fest stretches to the edges as well as embracing the familiar. Many of Killorglin's buildings, all with their own unique history, are turned into galleries for the weekend making for interesting viewing spaces. There will also be plenty on offer music-wise across many genres from folk to experimental pop. 90% of the gigs are free and feature some of the best up-and-coming talent in Ireland. There will be plenty of fun kids' events too!"

Check website for gigs and information.



Ring Of Beara Cycle Race 2017

Saturday 27th May 2017

Cycle Ireland’s most spectacular peninsula and embrace the unspoiled beauty of the Wild.

Experience the Wild Atlantic Way. Embrace the unspoilt beauty of the Wild Atlantic Way and the rugged coastline of the Beara Peninsula. This cycle can boast of having, Ireland’s most spectacular and breath-taking scenery around every corner. Cyclist will pass picturesque and quaint towns including Eyeries, Allihies and Kenmare to mention just a few.

Support local charities. All funds raised from the Ring of Beara Cycle Kenmare will go towards two worthwhile local charities. Cancer Connect and South West Counselling.

The Ring of Beara Cycle is a great excuse to plan a weekend away with family and friends in Kenmare town. The idyllic town of Kenmare is a haven for pretty boutiques, fine restaurants, and excellent accommodation and is a mecca for the great outdoors. Check out Kenmare.ie for more information on Kenmare and the surrounding area.

There is a route to suit all levels of fitness from the seasoned cyclist to the casual peddler. Choose from the 140km route or the shorter 110km route. Cyclists will experience the magnificent scenery of the mountains, valleys and the Wild Atlantic Way.

Participants will enjoy food and chat at the fully stocked feeding stations dotted along the routes. There will be great atmosphere and superb facilities including hot food, hot tubs, massage, entertainment and finishers’ medal for all cyclists at the finish area.


The Ring Participants will have a choice of an exciting 140km or 110km cycle, by the rugged Wild Atlantic Way coastal route on the Beara Peninsula.

Route Description

Participants will pass some of Ireland’s most picturesque and quaint towns including Ardgroom, Eyeries, Allihies, Castletownbere, Adrigole, Glengarriff and back to Kenmare town. Cyclists can revel in the unspoilt beauty of the Wild Atlantic Way.

Participants will be rewarded with a finisher medal, hot food, hot tubs, massage and entertainment.






See Next Month For Details Of:

Listowel Writers Week - Co Kerry 

Wednesday 1st June - Sunday 5th June 2016 

K-Fest Arts & Music 

Friday 3rd June – Monday 6t June 2016

Listowel Races 

Sunday 5th June Monday 6th June 

Ireland Bike Fest 

Saturday 4th June – Monday 6th June 2016 

Kingdom Alliance Tour of Kerry 

Saturday 4th June – Monday 6th June 2016 

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