The Conor Pass - An Conair

The Conor Pass dingle peninsula Ireland
"descending the Conor Pass down into Dingle Town can feel more like landing a light aircraft than driving"

The Conor Pass is one of the highest mountain passes in Ireland, and provides the most dramatic and scenic way of crossing from the north to south coast of the Dingle Peninsula. This narrow, twisting road runs for 12kms between the town of Dingle on the south and Kilmore Cross on the north of the peninsula, where roads fork to Cloghane/Brandon or Castlegregory. The views from the road are breathtaking, with a glaciated landscape of mountains, corrie lakes and a broad sweeping valley spread out below.

At the steepest part the road weaves its way around sharp cliff faces and passes high corrie lakes. There are some very narrow sections where two cars cannot pass, so drivers need to keep their eyes peeled when driving and be ready to stop at the wider sections. Vehicles over two tonnes in weight are prohibited from using the Conor Pass to avoid difficulties in passing other vehicles. A guide to driving the Conor Pass can be found here

There are two main viewing stops, one at Peddlar's Lake on the north side and the other at the top. From the scenic car park at the summit there are fantastic views north and south of the Dingle Peninsula along the Wild Atlantic Way.

corrie lake with cliff rising up behind at Lough Doon Dingle Peninsula

Pedlar's Lake

lough Doon Corrie lake
Lough Doon (locally known as Pedlar’s Lake) is a glacial corrie lake that sits above the road on the north side of the Conor Pass. Beneath the lake is the Conor Pass waterfall with a small car park and viewing area. The lake is accessed by clambering up a small rock path above the car park. This is the most accessible place to study the glaciated mountain scenery of the Dingle Peninsula. You can see the glacially striated rock lip of the corrie lake and boulder strewn moraines, a moraine-dammed lake and a kettle hole lake in the wide U shaped valley below.
image of two lakes in the valley below Conor Pass

Conor Pass Car Park

view point on the Wild Atlantic Way
At the highest point of the Conor Pass there is a small car park where you can stop and admire the dramatic view. This is considered one of the iconic viewing points of the Wild Atlantic Way. From here looking south you can see across Dingle Bay to the Iveragh peninsula, Ring of Kerry and out to sea the Skellig Rocks. Looking to the North is Kerry Head and Loop Head Co.Clare. Occasionally in very clear weather it is possible to see the Aran Islands off Co.Galway. Remember to bring a warm layer as the temperature is always a few degrees cooler at the top.
waterfall bridge and mist on the Conor Pass Dingle Peninsula

Conor Pass Waterfall

Rain, Fog and Mist

Driving the Conor Pass in rain, fog and mist is a very different but exhilarating experience. Long distance views disappear as you literally drive up into the clouds. Surrounded by steep cliff faces and dripping overhanging rocks the Conor Pass can be magical in these conditions - with only the narrow winding road and a few sheep for company you drive through an ancient landscape as if lost in the mists of time. After heavy rain, large volumes of water run down the mountains in streams and waterfalls. The road brings you close to one of these waterfalls on the north side of the pass.

top of Conor Pass road with sign saying turn back for large vehicles

Advice For Driving The Conor Pass - An Chonair

The Conor Pass is a mountain pass with length (max. 7.2m) and weight restrictions (max 2 tonnes). Vehicles greater than 2 tonnes in weight are not permitted to travel north-east of the car park at the summit of the Conor Pass. Vehicles such as coaches, caravans, camper vans and trucks cannot use the pass as they will not get through.

The first 2 km descent of the Conor Pass towards Cloghane Brandon, Castlegregory and Camp is narrow with several lay-bys to allow traffic to pass. Please yield beside lay-bys to allow any oncoming vehicles to pass with ease.

The final 2 km ascent of the Conor Pass from Cloghane Brandon, Castlegregory and Camp is narrow with several lay-bys to allow traffic to pass. Signage is in place to advise of their location. Please pull in when you see on coming vehicles.

The Conor Pass is not suitable for HGVs. Whilst vehicles can get to the summit of the Conor Pass from Dingle Town, the road from the Summit to Cloghane Brandon, Castlegregory and Camp is not accessible to any vehicle over 2 tonnes.

Use fog lights when driving in poor visibility and watch out for the signs that indicate how far motorists have to travel to the next passing bay.

For more advice on driving the Dingle Peninsula please see Driving on the Dingle Peninsula  or you can download our driving guide in PDF format here.

The Conor Pass Dingle Peninsula

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