The Kerry Dark Sky Reserve

The Kerry International Dark-Sky Reserve has been designated Ireland’s first International Dark Sky Reserve by the International Dark-Sky Association, one of only 3 Gold Tier Reserves on the planet, and the only Gold Tier Reserve in the Northern Hemisphere.

This means that on clear nights the sky in this South West region of Ireland is simply stunning, with many astronomical sights seen through the naked eye as can be seen say in the Grand Canyon or the desert plains of Africa. Constellations can be viewed here with many more stars than are shown on the usual sky maps. The beautiful band of the Milky Way, the Andromeda Galaxy, Star Clusters and Nebula’s are just some of the naked eye wonders to see without the aid of any astronomical equipment or filters.

The Kerry International Dark-Sky Reserve is located in the South West coast of Ireland in what is called an ISTHMUS – a narrow strip of land connecting two larger land areas, usually with water on either side. The Reserve is protected by the Kerry Mountains and Hills on one side and the Atlantic ocean on the other, is approx. 700 sq km in size and offers dark unlit polluted skies, inhabited villages, helpful locals, remote wilderness, long sandy beaches, and numerous lakes, islands and rivers.

If you have ever visited the Kerry region of Ireland you will know of its astounding natural beauty. Anyone who has motored on the famous Ring-of Kerry route will attest to its wonder and ease of travel. If however, you have never viewed the Kerry International Dark Sky Reserve, you will have missed out on a wonder only revealed after the sun truly sets and an orchestra of stars come out to re-vitalise your senses… A 45minute drive from Kenmare.

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