Killarney parkrun


The Killarney parkrun is a great way to get out and about in Killarney National Park on a Saturday morning. The weekly event takes place at 9:30 every Saturday morning and is one of the hundreds of parkruns taking place across the world each week. Set in the magnificent surroundings of the Muckross area of Killarney National Park, parkrun will get your weekend off to a great start!

The parkrun story

KillarneyGuide.ie Killarney parkrun start

The first ‘hill’!

Parkrun is a great example of how a simple idea can turn into an event and eventually a movement. Starting back in 2004 with a handful of runners in the UK, parkrun events are now running in 14 countries every weekend of the year. The concept is simple – A free, timed 5km run every week at the same time in the same place, which happens to be a park. All parkruns are organised and managed by volunteers, most of whom are parkrunners themselves.

The Killarney parkrun started in the summer of 2015 and has become a well-established fixture every Saturday morning since then. The run goes ahead all year round and attracts runners and walkers of all abilities and shapes and sizes. Although the event is timed and requires (free) registration, it is not a ‘race’ as such, so it’s a great way for beginners to get a feel for running a timed event.

That is one of the main attractions of the parkrun – it is a timed event with other participants. While you don’t need to be competitive, there is a great motivating effect from being part of a tribe of parkrunners and you will feel yourself wanting to do your best every time you take part. So whether you are on your holidays in Killarney, visiting for the weekend or you’re a local resident, take some time to explore the Killarney parkrun next Saturday at 9:30 am!

How to Get There

The Killarney parkrun takes place every Saturday in the grounds of Muckross Gardens and Traditional Farms. Located about 6 km outside of Killarney town, Muckross can be reached by various forms of transport. There is a paved path from the outskirts of the town that goes through the National Park all the way to the farms. The path is shared by walkers, cyclists and the traditional jaunting cars. Jaunting cars can be hired from the town centre and there are a number of locations to rent a bicycle if you need one.

There is ample car parking right outside the entrance to the farms, with an overflow car park in use during the busy summer months. It is at this car park (signposted for ‘Camper Vans’) that the Killarney Parkrun starting point is located. There are also a number of buses stopping at Muckross House but make sure to check their timetables in advance, especially during the winter months.

Killarney parkrun course

All you need to do to take part is to register on the parkrun website in advance. This is a once-off registration, you don’t need to register each time you run. After registration, you will receive your own personal bar code. You will need to print this and bring it with you on the morning of the parkrun.

Killarney parkrun is a 5km route comprising of two laps around the Muckross area of Killarney National Park.

KillarneyGuide.ie Killarney parkrun parklands

Heading towards Muckross Abbey

You can find full details of the course on the Killarney parkrun website here. As well as having a timed, organised 5km run, you will also get to experience some of the magic of Muckross as you traverse the course.

It is relatively flat throughout the course with just a few small inclines to negotiate en route. As you leave behind the Muckross schoolhouse, you climb a short hill before descending to the grounds of Muckross Abbey. After skirting by the Abbey, you head towards Lough Leane and follow the trail through the woods along the lake shore.

As you emerge from the woods, one more (little!) hill awaits you before you roll down the other side with Muckross House ahead of you. A short section through the open parkland finishes out your lap before you get to enjoy it all again. The course finishes back in the car park near the entrance to Muckross Traditional Farms and your parkrun is done!

Find out more

KillarneyGuide.ie Killarney parkrun finish

The finish line at Muckross Schoolhouse

The continuing success of the Killarney parkrun is very much dependent on a small team of volunteers who help to manage and marshal the event each Saturday. You can find out how to help out here or check out the Facebook page for regular updates.

While there is no shortage of great 5k running routes in the Killarney area (there’s a quick guide to some of the best here), the Killarney Parkrun is great if you’re looking for something extra. Whether you’re pushing for a personal best or need a little extra motivation to put on the running shoes, the parkrun gives you the perfect excuse to get out and about on a Saturday morning.

For more information about the Killarney parkrun, visit the website or Facebook page. If you want to try out some more great 5k runs in the Killarney area, download the FREE ‘5 Great 5k Runs in Killarney’ eBook below.


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