Welcome to Sneem Secret Harbour, a luxury self catering hideaway in the stunningly gorgeous location of Oysterbed, Sneem, on the Ring of Kerry. Very special, very private, very beautiful, this is the ultimate escape for those who like to get away and relax in beautiful surroundings, while also enjoying the great restaurants and traditional Irish pubs in nearby Sneem village and Parknasilla.
Sneem Secret Harbour is an architect designed holiday home directly overlooking the water and surrounded by a backdrop of Ireland's highest mountain ranges. The Ring of Kerry is unsurpassed for its natural beauty and the house, sitting on a large, private, elevated site, takes full advantage of this stunning scenery, providing breathtaking views of the sea and surrounding mountains.
The house caters for 6 guests in 3 beautifully furnished en-suite bedrooms with high quality crisp white bed linen and soft white towels. The wonderfully comfortable beds are of the highest quality and, with Thomas Sanderson blackout blinds and touch lighting, provide a really great night's sleep. Eco-friendly geothermal under floor heating, WiFi, flat screen tv, dvds, music, games, art materials and a contemporary wood burning stove provide the highest standard of comfort. Top of the range appliances and as much quality glassware, crockery, cutlery and equipment as you could ever possibly need makes this a chef's dream kitchen. Extra large pots are provided for cooking crab and lobster which you can buy fresh from the sea from the local fishermen at nearby Oysterbed Pier.
Being just 3km from Sneem village, Sneem Secret Harbour is very convenient to bars, restaurants, shops, butcher, bakery, pharmacy and other facilities. For outdoor activities, the options are unlimited - swimming, snorkelling, windsurfing, kayaking, boat trips, fishing, hill walking, cycling, golfing, horse riding, walking, bird watching, painting, sightseeing - all available in the area and easily organised. For indoors - reading, painting (books & art materials provided), music. Enjoy luxury spa treatments in the nearby hotels, or relax over a pint of Guinness in the local pubs and enjoy lots of chat with the locals.
We meet our guests on arrival and take great care to personally ensure that we are welcoming you to a home that is supremely comfortable, superbly equipped, luxuriously relaxing and spotlessly clean so that you can make the very most of every moment of your stay and truly enjoy this 'little piece of heaven' that is Sneem Secret Harbour.
We built Sneem Secret Harbour in 2007. It is located towards the end of a short, private cul-de-sac, on an elevated site overlooking the sea and is the only house on our 7 acres of unspoilt natural countryside which is covered in red sandstone rock outcrops, with stands of birch, willow, holly, rowan, rhododendron, furze, ferns and heathers. These provide glorious colour all year round and are home to a wonderful selection of wildlife, that can be observed, especially first thing in the morning, with the help of binoculars that we provide. Stroll through the pathways in the grounds and enjoy the wonderful views and diversity of nature.
The exterior has a traditional stone finish while the interior is modern and contemporary with a palette of colours, plants, pictures and furnishings that is warm, welcoming and wonderfully relaxing. The house is superbly equipped and with constant care and attention to detail we try to ensure that our guests have absolutely everything necessary for a luxuriously relaxing and memorable stay.
A south facing paved patio area, with furniture, runs along the entire rear of the house and enjoys sunshine all day.
Bedroom 3 opens on to a large first floor deck that can also be accessed by means of an outside stairway. Here you can enjoy spectacular views of the grounds and the surrounding sea and mountains. The deck area is very peaceful and completely private - a perfect place for reading or painting, enjoying a coffee in the morning sunshine or a quiet relaxing drink in the evening.
For outdoors, the options are unlimited - swimming, snorkelling, windsurfing, canoeing, fishing, boat trips ,hillwalking, cycling, golfing, horse riding, hiking, birdwatching, painting, sightseeing ....and indoors, reading, painting (art materials are provided), music, luxury spa treatments in the nearby hotels - all available locally and easily organised. Do let us know if you have a hobby or an interest in any particular activity that you would like to do during your stay - we will be delighted to advise you on the best local operators and help you book/organise the activities in advance of your arrival, if necessary.
WALKING and hiking are a huge part of the great outdoors in this area. There is a fantastic choice and variety of walks and treks and never enough time! We are keen walkers (we met hillwalking and got married on top of a mountain). We can provide maps and suggest some wonderful walks in the area. Walking maps are also available from Sneem Tourist Office and the Geopark Centre in the village, and walking guides can be arranged, if required. The Kerry Way practically passes our door and at over 200 km, it is one of Ireland's longest signposted walking trails and also one of the most popular. It passes through some of the most beautiful and dramatic countryside and offers a spectacular choice of gentle or rugged routes - from beaches to mountains, short trails to 4 day treks! Sneem is surrounded by mountains and Ireland's highest peak, Carrantouhill (1039 metres) and the Macgillacuddy Reeks are visible from the deck and are within easy daily driving distance from the house. Further afield on the Dingle Penninsula is Mount Brandon, Ireland's second highest mountain.
KAYAKING, Snorkelling and Diving can be easily organised locally and Oysterbed harbour, with its myriad of islands, is a truly magical place for these activities. We are familiar with some of the Kayaking and Dive centres in the area and we will be happy to assist you in planning and organising your activities. The bay is sheltered and safe, and enjoys the benefits of the Gulf Stream with some wonderful wildlife - look out for the curious residents.....seals, herons, cormorants, oyster catchers and also the dolphins that regularly visit the harbour. Remember also to look up and you may indeed spot the White Tailed Eagles that have recently been re-introduced into Ireland after an absence of almost 100 years. These majestic birds are regular visitors flying directly over the house on their foraging route between Killarney National Park and Kenmare Bay.
FISHING. Kerry is a paradise for anglers and you'll be spoilt for choice! If you ever dreamt of catching a salmon, then catch your first salmon while staying with us! We can put you in contact with some of the local Fisheries and help you get everything organised - boats, rods, gear, licenses, ghillies, etc. for a perfect day on the water. If you would like to try some sea fishing, we can recommend some local licensed boat operators who will take you out the bay (full/half day of fishing or just sightseeing) for a truly memorable experience.
SNEEM, (meaning ‘knot’ in Irish) is called ‘The Knot in the Ring’ and is just 3km from the house, and is a lovely relaxed and friendly village. It is the ideal location for guests looking to get away from the hustle and bustle of modern life. The village is divided in the middle by a bridge over the falls in the Sneem River and this bridge forms the focal point of the village and provides dramatic views. Sneem has all the necessary services of any small town or village along with lots of interesting shops, restaurants, cafes, 4 Star hotel and a wonderful selection of traditional Irish pubs. These serve terrific food at reasonable prices, have regular live traditional Irish music sessions and always a friendly welcome. Try D. O'Shea's pub in the North Square where Gearbhan and Mary will give you a very warm welcome, a great pint of Guinness and wonderful food that is served all day and can be enjoyed sitting beside a roasting turf fire if the weather is cold, or in the sunshine out on the deck overlooking the Sneem River.
Take only a short stroll from the house and the road ends at OYSTERBED PIER. The scenery here is breathtaking and a stroll to the pier early in the morning, where you can sit and soak up the silence, is heavenly. It is also a lovely place for swimming. Chat to some of the local fishermen who operate their boats from the pier, and from whom you can buy some fresh fish from their daily catch. If you would like to explore the bay or try some sea angling, we can suggest some local operators who provide boat trips out the bay for sightseeing and fishing.
Less than 2km from the house is the 5-Star PARKNASILLA Hotel and Spa, with its magnificent gardens, golf course and labyrinth of walks. This is one of Europe's finest hotels and has a rich heritage dating back to 1692. George Bernard Shaw described Parknasilla as a place that ‘does not belong to any world that you and I have ever worked or lived in. It is part of our dream world’ It is a nearby gem that you simply must visit. 'Parknasilla' comes from the Irish ‘Pairc na Saileac’, meaning ‘Field of the Willow Trees’. The marked pathways and tracks that wind through the hotel's extensive woodlands and islands are set amid spectacular, lush scenery. The walks are designed so that you can choose a short walk lasting about 30 minutes or a longer route taking up to 2 hours. Some, like the Fairy Path, are especially designed for children. When you finish up back at the hotel, you can then reward yourself with a drink in the bar or afternoon tea and sit back, relax and enjoy the wonderful ambiance and comfort of this unique hotel. Non-residents are very welcome to use the hotels's swimming pool and spa facilities