The secret to discovering the true beauty of Valentia is to spend time exploring its hidden treasures and getting to know local people who are renowned for their friendliness. There is a broad range of activities for young and old.
Deep Sea Angling and Fishing
Whether Deep Sea Angling or Shore Fishing is your passion, Valentia is an ideal base. The Gulf stream Waters off Valentia have a great variety of species including Shark, Ray, Conger, Cod, Pollack, Ling, Wrasse, Mackerel and many many more. Boats can be hired from Knightstown for Deep Sea Angling with a Skipper that will find you the best fishing areas. Also, Rock Fishing is available on the island with the renowned Culloo Rock where there is always a Catch of the Day.
The hills and roads of the island are a haven for walkers. Walk to Bray Head which is one of the most western points in Europe and enjoy the spectacular views of the Skellig Rocks Puffin Island and smaller islands. Along the way there are standing stones, beehive huts (ancient dwellings) and a 19th century signal tower (in ruins) as well as unspoilt landscape to amaze the viewer.
Alternatively, walk or drive to Valentia's highest point - Geokaun Mountain and Fogher Cliffs. there are 360 o views of the Blasket Islands, Skellig Islands, McGillicuddy Reeks, Dingle Peninsula, and local areas. There are information panels to tell all about history and the island way of life.
For the less enthusiastic, the quiet country lanes and roads of the island are lined with fuchsia and monbretia where one can enjoy flora and fauna as they stroll along.
For Water Lovers and Water Adventure Sport Enthusiasts Valentia has an abundance on offer. Shingle and Sandy beaches where swimmers can enjoy clean, blue waters. Swimming lessons take place locally during the summer months. Surfing, Canoeing, Kayaking, Sailing, Diving, Power Boating and Pleasure Boat Excursions are all available locally.
Valentia Island Sea Sport and Adventures provide hire of wetsuits, canoes, sailing boats etc. They also run sailing courses and rock climbing / abseiling camps for all ages throughout the year.
Diving off Valentia and the Skellig Rocks can be organised where some of the most spectacular underwater marine life is waiting to be explored.
Valentia is only 15 miles from the Internationally renowned 18 Hole Waterville Golf Links where Tiger Woods, Payne Steward, Sean Connery, Bob Hope and Michael Douglas played in one of the longest courses in Europe. Waterville also has a second course - Skellig Bay - with spectacular views of sea and mountain
From country lanes and quiet roads to long distance trails, cycling in Valentia gives you the freedom to explore the majestic countryside. Cycle the Skellig Ring which is a challenging 45km circuit or for the more adventurous The Ring of Kerry Cycle route of 217km.
Skellig Rocks & Beginis Island
The UNESCO World Heritage site of Skellig Michael is situated 12km south west of Valentia. It is one of two islands rising out of the Atlantic Ocean. The other island is home to 60,000 gannets and is the 2nd largest gannet colony in the world. Boats set sail from Valentia and nearby Portmagee (weather permitting) during the summer months. You can climb the 600 steps to the monastery where the monks lived in the 6th century. Explore the dwellings, learn about viking attacks or take in the breathtaking views.
Other islands such as Beginis and Church Island in valentia Harbour can also be explored with boat hire available from Knightstown. Beginis has sandy beaches, forest and cliff walks just waiting to be explored.
There are local Equestrian Centres where trekking through countryside, woodlands and on sandy beaches can be enjoyed by the experienced and inexperienced. There are also race meetings in Killarney and Tralee at various times throughout the year.
There are numerous restaurants and cafe's in the area with a wide variety of local produce on offer with fresh seafood being a specialty. Valentia Island Farmhouse Dairy produce a variety of homemade ice cream which can be sampled at their scenic cafe.
There are two heritage centres on Valentia. Valentia Heritage Centre in Knightstown is located in an old school and gives an excellent account of the history of the island. The Skellig Experience is located near the bridge where visitors can view models, exhibitions and audiovisuals of the Skellig Rocks. Both centres are well worth a visit.
Many visitors come to the island for whale and dolphin watching (near Bray Head) to bird watching in the woods and bogs of the island. Artists and Photographers are inspired by the panoramic sea and mountain views.