Festivals in Kerry

County Kerry has several events and festivals around the year that offer a great opportunity to experience local culture in a pleasant setting with plenty to do. The locals love to celebrate, and practically every town here holds an annual event or two.

The Tralee Feile na Bealtaine (May), Listowel’s Literary Festival (May), and Dingle Food Festival (October) are among the many events held in County Kerry annually. The most well-known are the Rose of Tralee and Puck Fair.

Rose of Tralee

Aslan in Denny Street at the Rose of Tralee
Aslan in Denny Street

Rose of Tralee is Ireland’s largest and longest-running festival. The five-day event is internationally celebrated and brings women of Irish descent from around the world in a celebration of their culture. Visitors can look forward to live music, parades, fireworks, the Rose Ball, and a fashion show.

Every year, a young woman is crowned as the ‘Rose’ to serve as the ambassador for the country and the festival globally. However, Rose of Tralee is not a beauty pageant, and the winner is not picked on the basis of appearance. Instead, personality, intellect, social responsibility, and Irish heritage decide the winner.

Puck Fair

Statue of the King Puck in Killorglin Kerry
Statue of the King Puck

Puck Fair is a three-day event held every year from the 10th to the 12th of August in Killorglin. It’s a fun family affair that everyone’s bound to enjoy, with parades, song, and dance.

As per tradition, a group of locals go up the mountain and fetch a wild goat, who is then crowned as ‘King Puck’ by a local schoolgirl who is named Queen of Puck.

The coronation, which takes place in the middle of the town square, marks the beginning of three days of festivities. At the end of the festival, the goat is sent home unharmed, back on the mountain.

Many find the tradition strange and no one’s sure how it began, but it’s been carried on for more than 400 years. Although unusual, the three days of Puck Fair, one of Ireland’s oldest fairs, guarantees a fun time.

Check out my web pages on the Ring of Kerry Drive, The Skellig Ring and Slea Head Drive.

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