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One of the best places to visit on the Slea Head Drive is the dramatic Dunmore Head.
It’s the most westerly point of mainland Ireland and it overlooks a series of Blasket Islands off the Dingle Peninsula.
You can access Dunmore Head on a short walk over the headland and it’s not to be missed.
Star Wars fans will love visiting this area as it is where they filmed some of Luke Skywalker’s Ahch-To in The Last Jedi.
These views are out of this world and the walk will transport you to a galaxy far, far away.
Here is a complete guide for Dunmore Head, a Star Wars filming location in Ireland.
What is Dunmore Head?
Dunmore Head, or An Dún Mór, is a rocky promontory and extreme headland on the Dingle Peninsula.
It’s not only the most westerly point of mainland Ireland but also one of the westernmost points in all of Europe.
The area is home to an ancient Ogham Stone at the highest point as well as a World War II outpost. It overlooks a series of Blasket Islands in the distance.
It’s so wild, remote, and untouched. All you can see is the ocean, the jagged coastline, and the waves crashing on the shore. It makes it one of the best stops on the Slea Head Drive.
Truly a world apart, this location has gotten very popular in recent years as it was used to film scenes in Star Wars The Last Jedi.
Dunmore Head Star Wars filming location
Star Wars fans will love the fact that they filmed part of The Last Jedi on Dunmore Head.
Although most of the filming for Luke Skywalker’s Jedi retreat of Ahch-To was filmed on Skellig Michael, they did film parts on the Dingle Peninsula too.
Dunmore Head Star Wars filming locations include meeting the Thala-siren where Luke milks the sea cow for green milk.
I’d rather him drink that than me and I think that Rey thought the same. Click here to watch the scene.
Also, it’s where Rey discovers Luke Skywalker’s X-Wing Fighter in the waters surrounding Ahch-To.
Fun fact: they had to transport the 18-foot-tall sea mammal puppet by helicopter and then five puppeteers were in charge of making its head move! They then added some CGI magic.
Where is Dunmore Head in Ireland?
Dunmore Head can be found on the Dingle Peninsula on the west coast of Ireland in County Kerry.
It’s a popular stop on the Slea Head Drive which takes you on a scenic 47-kilometre (30 miles) journey around the dramatic coastline.
You can find Dunmore Head just beyond Coumeenoole Beach and it’s very easy to visit on a short hike.
How to visit Dunmore Head
You can’t drive to Dunmore Head directly, you have to park up at Coumeenoole Beach and then walk the rest of the way over the headland.
Driving is the easiest way to get there and you’ll find that it’s 18 kilometres from the town of Dingle.
As the roads are so narrow, it can take as long as 30 minutes to get there depending on traffic.
But, as it’s one of the highlights of the Slea Head Drive, it’s better to visit this spot along with other attractions on the route.
Public transport is very limited here and there is no Dunmore Head bus.
You can get a bus to Dingle but there will be no onward transport to Coumeenoole Beach. So, you will need to book a taxi.
Walking would take a very long time but there is the option of cycling the route too.
Where do you park for Dunmore Head?
There is a large car park that is located above Coumeenoole Beach where you can park for free to visit the Dunmore Head Star Wars location.
Parking spaces here are limited and the Slea Head drive can be very popular, especially in the tourist season.
To guarantee a parking space, I would arrive either earlier in the morning or later in the afternoon for a quieter visit.
Or, you could park up and wait for someone to leave. Most people stop here for a short time to see the beach and then head back on the road.
Dunmore Head walk opening times and prices
Coumeenoole Beach and Dunmore Head are both open 24 hours a day to visit on the Slea Head Drive. But, I wouldn’t recommend doing this walk in the dark.
There is a 1 euro donation fee to do this walk and you can pop it in their honesty box that is by the entrance gate.
All proceeds help towards the upkeep of the head and keeping the walk safe for those who visit.
It’s a very small price to pay for such spectacular views of the most westerly point of Ireland and to visit a Star Wars filming location.
When you park up for the Dunmore Head Walk, I would recommend checking out Coumeenoole Beach.
It’s a golden sand beach and, on a sunny day, it will have some of the prettiest turquoise waters you’ve ever seen.
I was so lucky with the weather on my visit without a cloud in the sky and you could almost imagine you weren’t in Ireland at all!
There is a concrete access path below the car park that will take you down to the cove safely.
If it’s warm weather, you can relax on the beach or swim in the sea. It felt like I was on a tropical island somewhere with the heatwave that was going on.
Dunmore Head walk directions
There isn’t a lot to this walk and it’s a very straightforward and easy circuit but I’ll provide some directions, what to expect, and top tips.
From the parking area, you will need to walk by all the cars toward the access gate at the end.
Here is where you can pay your 1 euro donation and then enter the gate for the walk.
This part of the walk was the steepest but it does even out at the top. Make sure you have a good pair of shoes on with a decent grip.
Once you reach the top of the hill, you will need to climb over a stile. It’s a stone wall with pieces of slate jutting out of it that make up some steps.
Although it’s easy enough, I still struggled a little bit as I have terrible balance. I chose to sit instead of stand over the wall and the rocks were scorching so they were burning my legs and bum lol.
If it’s raining make sure to be extra careful here too as it can get very slippery.
Once you’re over the stile, keep walking straight ahead and you will see the series of Blasket islands ahead of you.
When you turn the corner, you will reach a fork in the pathway. One leads you lower on a rocky decline, the other will take you up and over the grassy headland.
Both paths will take you down to the end of Dunmore Head eventually.
I found the upper path was a bit longer but it was a lot safer as it took you over the grassy headland.
The lower ‘rockier’ path was very steep and looked kind of sketchy as it had a steep drop below!
Whichever path you choose, you can then walk down towards the series of islands and get some amazing views over the coast.
Once you’ve finished, simply turn around and then head back the way you came to the parking area. You can visit the WW2 lookout tower and the ancient Ogham Stone on your return.
See the Star Wars filming location!
From the end of Dunmore Head, you can get a great view of where they set up the Thala-siren on the rocks.
I wouldn’t recommend going all the way down to the bottom, the film crew made a path especially for the actors as it’s not really safe to traverse.
But, you can get close enough and see the jagged islands that made up Ahch-To as the waves crash against them and the shore.
If it is bad weather, be very careful exploring here. If there are high winds or heavy rain don’t stand too close to the edges.
How long is the Dunmore Head walk?
You will need around 1-2 hours to complete this walk on the Dingle Peninsula.
It will take you around 30-45 minutes to reach Dunmore Head one way and you will want to spend some time there once you arrive.
You could cut the time down by admiring the Blasket islands from the viewpoint at the top of the cliffs. But, I would recommend heading down to the very end of Dunmore head if you can.
Seeing the ocean waves crash upon the small islands was incredible and the roaring sound it made was so cool.
Is the walk difficult?
I wouldn’t say it is difficult but parts are very steep and you have to climb over a stile in the form of a large wall with slate steps. So, it may not be suitable for those with mobility problems.
The ground is also quite uneven. To avoid the sketchier paths down to the head, I would take the upper path that allows you to walk on the grassy headland rather than the rocky incline below.
This is especially important in inclement weather. The entire route is exposed to the elements and the rain and high winds can make parts of the Dunmore Head walk difficult.
This walk took a bit longer for me as it was just so hot. There was barely any breeze and I was melting.
My top tips for visiting
- Wear sensible shoes – you will need a good pair of shoes with a grip. Trainers will be fine but you may struggle in sliders/sandals.
- Bring a bottle of water – it’s not a lengthy walk but it’s always best to keep hydrated. On my visit, it was so hot!
- Bring some cash – You will need a euro per person for the walk. Bring some euro coins to pop into the honesty box.
- Respect the land – Take rubbish home and always leave no trace in these beauty spots.
- It’s not dog friendly – dogs are not permitted beyond the stile on the headland due to sheep grazing in the fields
- Pack your camera – the views here are out of this world. Make sure to pack your camera for some photos to remember your visit. Bonus points for bringing a Jedi robe or Lightsaber ;)
Is visiting Dunmore Head worth it?
Yes, Dunmore Head is truly one of the highlights of the Slea Head Drive in Ireland and it’s not to be missed.
The walk isn’t overly difficult and it has some of the most dramatic views on the entire Dingle Peninsula.
Visiting one of the most westerly points of Europe is also an opportunity not to be missed.
Fans of the Stars Wars movies will especially love visiting as you can catch a glimpse of Luke Skywalker’s Jedi Retreat.
It’s the closest you can get to Ahch-To without taking a boat trip and it will transport you to a galaxy far, far away.
Looking for more Star Wars locations in Ireland?
There are many more Star Wars locations around Ireland and some that you can visit on the Dingle Peninsula.
The nearest on the Slea Head Drive would be Sybil Head (Ceann Sibéal) where you can see a view of where they set up some of the Jedi Huts in the village.
The Beehive huts were only set up for filming. But, there are plenty of real Beehive Huts that you can visit on the Dingle Peninsula.
They also used the remote isle of Skellig Michael which was the main filming location for Luke Skywalker’s Ahch-To.
It’s far off the coast and can only be accessed by boat. They run tours from May to September and it’s recommended to book early to avoid disappointment.
Where to next on the Slea Head Drive
Beyond chasing Star Wars locations there are plenty more incredible places to visit on the Slea Head Drive.
Next up, I would recommend visiting Dunquin Pier. It’s also known as the Sheep’s Highway and is a serpentine pier that leads to the ocean. You can take a boat to the Blasket Islands from there.
You can also visit the Blasket Centre which is a museum and panoramic viewpoint. The exhibition gives you a background of what life was like for the community that lived here.
You can also visit Gallarus Oratory which is one of the oldest surviving Christian temples in the country.
Or you can visit some of the Beehive Huts and Ringforts that the Dingle Peninsula has in abundance. My favourite was the Fairy Fort Ringfort where you could feed some animals too.
Dingle is where you will start and end your Slea Head Drive and it has lots of facilities like hotels, cafés and restaurants. Plus, independent shops and pubs.
Where to stay near Dunmore Head
Many people base themselves in Killarney for the Ring of Kerry and Slea Head Drive but I’m going to be controversial and say you should stay in Dingle for the drive around this peninsula.
Although Killarney is nice, the views on the Dingle Peninsula are far superior in my opinion and they are less crowded as coaches can’t access the narrow roads.
There are plenty of accommodation choices and most of these would be in Dingle itself. It’s a colourful town with lots of infrastructure.
Here are some top recommended accommodation choices in this area;
Dunmore Head FAQs
- Is Dunmore Head the westernmost point of Ireland? Yes, it’s the westernmost point of mainland Ireland. The Blasket Islands hold the ‘true’ westernmost point.
- Did they film Star Wars at Dunmore Head? Yes, they filmed scenes from Star Wars The Last Jedi here.
- Which Star Wars was filmed on the Dingle Peninsula? The Last Jedi.
- What Star Wars scene was filmed at Dunmore Head? It’s Luke Skywalker’s hiding place for his X-wing and the green milk scene on Ahch-To.