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Ireland’s big five adventure challenge

Beyond the blarney of the Kerry tourist trail, the Reeks District is pitching itself as the country’s adventure playground, with five outdoor activities on offer

Halfway through cycling the Ring of the Reeks in Kerry, I realise I am going to make it. Not just the circuit’s full 90km but also the tourist board’s Big Five Challenge, which was launched this month.

I started my mission three days earlier with a seven-hour trek to the top of Ireland’s highest peak, 1,039-metre Carrauntoohil in MacGillycuddy’s Reeks, the range of mountains I’m now encircling by bike. The following day’s action included surfing on Inch Beach, kayaking for 6km across Caragh Lake, and night-time paddleboarding on Cloon Lough in Kerry’s Dark Sky Reserve. Today’s ride includes 1,350 metres of climbing over three of Ireland’s highest mountain passes.

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