Dingle Town is a 75-minute drive from Tralee on the N86 and two hours west of Killarney via Killorglin and Castlemaine, and is situated near the edge of the eponymous Dingle Peninsula. The coastal drive offers excellent views across the bay of the Iveragh Peninsula on the other side. Weather is an important consideration when planning a visit to Dingle -- if the mist is down, consider postponing. Visitors can take a 10 minute walk from the pier up Green St. to visit the best craft shops and proceed down Main Street, and back along the Mall to the pier to find the best shops, pubs, and restaurants.
Dingle Town or An Daingean?
You won't see the name Dingle on a signpost, though. By decree of the Irish government in 2005, Irish-speaking places must use the Irish language version of the town name, and since then, Dingle Town has been known as An Daingean. An Daingean must be used on all official documents, maps, and signposts. The residents of Dingle, however, are reluctant to lose a recognized name worth millions to the tourist industry. Consequently, "Dingle" is still used by most local businesses and tourist publications. Meanwhile, the legal arguments over the name continue in Dublin. Dingle's population totals roughly 1,500 and multiplies in summer. There are good restaurants in town, pubs offer lively music, and Irish is spoken in everyday dealings. Dingle is famous worldwide as the location for the shooting of the film Ryan's Daughter in 1969.
Dingle is also known as a favourite hideaway of celebrities such as Julia Roberts. Some pubs and restaurants feature photographs of celebrity visitors from down through the years, such as Sean Connery, Dolly Parton, Keanu Reeves and Bob Mitchum.
The town hosts a wild bottle-nosed dolphin named Fungie who entertains all with his antics. The town erected a bronze statue of the dolphin, and he is so reliable in appearing to tourists that boaters offer clients their money back if he doesn't show.
Even by Irish standards, Dingle has an unusually high concentration of pubs, with a total of over fifty watering holes in the town. That's one pub for every forty Dingle residents. Certain venues, such as John Benny Moriarty's (known locally simply as John Benny's) often feature traditional Irish music.