I landed a job in a local hostel and although the work was hard and not very rewarding – especially when I was working on my own – living in Killarney was well worth it. Thinking about summarising five months of living into one post is uncanny. How can I possibly do it? I hardly know where to start… perhaps with sunrise?
After training for a month I was on my own in the hostel for 6 weeks before I saw another staff member. Living alone and working alone was definitely a challenge. I hardly went outside for most of April – during the day, anyway. But I met a load of amazing people, many of whom I am still friends with. I feel like I could go almost anywhere in the world and know someone. There was the guy who spent his entire stay only eating eggs from a 6 pack because he was so strapped for cash. Another guy asked me if he could draw a pentagram on the dorm floor (no!). Intrepid traveller Jeff The Ramblin Man accompanied me on my first big trek around the national park!
At the beginning of May, Amy arrived. She was another kiwi girl and work was ten million times better with her around. Many laughs were had. Days were spent working and, on sunny days, walking about the park. Nights were spent at the Grand Hotel or Courtney’s. Tours coming through were definitely a highlight for us. They had so much energy and I found myself wanting to make them fall as in love with Killarney as I was! They would come through most afternoons like a whirlwind, party up a storm, and be gone by 10am the next day. Sometimes the fun was more casual, some games in the kitchen followed by dancing at the Grand to J90!
And most importantly! I met my boyfriend (now fiancé) here! 🙂
So what exactly is there to do in Killarney? My Top Ten things to see, do, and eat in Killarney and it’s surrounds (no particular order):
1. Visit Torc Waterfall and go hiking around Torc Mountain
2. Bike through the National Park
3. Check out Ross Castle
4. Visit the house and grounds of Muckross House
5. Explore Killarney town. Maybe have a pint at Courtney’s Bar or The Grand.
6. Tour the Ring of Kerry
7. Visit Dingle and drive around Slea Head
8. In the summer – tanning at Inch Beach
9. Dinner at Cronin’s Restaurant
10. CUPCAKES FROM BAKE!
THEY WILL CHANGE YOUR LIFE… provided you recover from your heart attack 🙂 [UPDATE: Bake no longer has a store front in Killarney! I am so sad! They have closed to concentrate on their amazing cakes]