Found at the base of Torc Mountain among the lakeland splendors of Killarney National Park, Torc Waterfall is a short walk off the winding Killarney-Kenmare road through the dense woodland of Friar’s Glen. Fed by the River Owengarriff, it plunges 66 ft (20 m) down a series of polished rock steps and eventually flows into Muckross Lake. The waterfall is at its most exuberant after rainy weather and is best seen by climbing the steps on its left for panoramic views of the cascade and the surrounding valleys.
A visit to Torc can be combined with a tour of the 110-mile (180 km) Ring of Kerry on the Iveragh Peninsula; as one of Europe’s most spectacular circular drives, it takes in the lush valleys and mountains of Killarney National Park, ancient stone forts and medieval monasteries. The waterfall is one of the highlights of the 124-mile (200-km) Kerry Way walking route and also forms part of a short circular hike from stately Muckross House.
Torc Waterfall is 4.3 miles (seven km) from Killarney; it is accessible for no charge. Getting there early in the morning or towards evening can help dodge the tourist crowds.