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Valentia Knightstown clock tower

It is a surprise to all who know Valentia Island that it is not more famous. Reached by a bridge from the town of Portmagee or via ferry from Cahersiveen in high season, Valentia has more charm and beauty than an island of its size merits. If you travel by ferry, you will arrive at the delightful village of Knightstown, with its distinctive clock tower. Then it’s on to explore such delights as the tetrapod walkway, a fossilized series of footprints dating back 350 million years.

While you’re there, watch the gannets diving near the lighthouse, visit the Valentia Slate Mines (which roofed such prestigious buildings as London’s houses of parliament), see where the first transatlantic cable was laid, and take in the panoramic views from the Geokaun Cliffs. From there, you can see the Blasket Islands off Dingle, the mountains of Kerry, and Skellig Michael, made famous in the Star Wars movies.

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