Glanleam is one of the townlands that makes up Valentia and at it’s heart is a large estate once home to the Knight of Kerry, the title held by the Fitzgerald family. The majority of Glanleam is covered in woodland, whose trees were planted by the knight when he resided there. The estate is open to the public as a sub-tropical garden and guesthouse, and you can walk through the gardens for a small fee.
Experiencing this garden is like straying into a benign jungle where the most exotic of plants rule in wild profusion. And if ever there was a place to give a sense of other worldliness it is Glanleam. The 40 acre site on an east facing bay on Valentia Island was created in the 19th century by the 19th Knight of Kerry, with plants sent back by plantcollectors from all over the world, particularly Australasia.
Much of the collection and its descendants survive, spreading and growing to enormous proportions in the warming breath of the Gulf Stream. This proves the point that things grow faster in Ireland than anywhere else at this latitude. The garden is long and narrow in shape with winding paths and amazing features. Storm damage is something that can pose quite a challenge to the current owners to maintain all the plants and vegetation.
Glanleam beach is another amazing addition to this area of Valentia, the only sandy beach in Valentia.
It is famous for Southern Hemisphere & Asian plants thriving in the mild climate of Valentia Island.
Coach Tours must be pre booked.
Phone: +353 (0)66 9476176
Fax: +353 (0)66 9476108
From the Ring of Kerry(N70): Take either the car ferry (near Cahersiveen) or the bridge to Valentia Island. Go to the top of Knightstown and follow the signs.