Mark Your Calendars For Wander Wild Festival, Killarney

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Ireland has plenty to offer in the coming months. There’s not one dull day in 2023, and here’s an unique festival you may want to keep an eye out for.

Whether you’re an adrenaline junkie, or a rambler who treks off the beaten track, or are on the search for new mindful experiences, there’s something to suit all wanderers at the Wander Wild Festival, Ireland’s great outdoors festival, which returns to Killarney from 24th-26th March 2023.

The unique adventure and wellness festival, set in the lakes and mountains of the 25,000-acre UNESCO Killarney National Park, has doubled in scale with a host of outdoor events for the body, mind and soul. 

Over festival weekend, you’ll have the chance to explore new adventures and recharge with a dip, hike, bike, kayak, swim, horse ride, ramble, or wellness activity against a backdrop of stunning scenic landscapes. 

Thrill seekers can scale Carrauntoohil – Ireland’s highest mountain, test their endurance on a trail run through the Gap of Dunloe, enjoy a night trail run on the Old Kenmare Road, rise to new heights with rock climbing and abseiling, or join an outdoor classroom and learn how to move off the beaten track with a Steep Ground Masterclass. 

The festival offers something for all outdoor lovers, ages, and abilities, with a myriad of unique experiences for those who seek out the rare or unusual. Paddle back in time on a Kayak Tour to Innisfallen Island – home to a monastery dating back to 640 AD, or start the day with a sunrise dip at Dundag, float in nature with an enchanting forest bath, discover the power of breath with a Wim Hof Method Workshop, or savour a warm recovery with a Samhradh Sauna Experience.  

New additions include a natural ice-bath in the Lakes of Killarney, a 3D sensory tour of the Blue Pool Nature Reserve with a light and sound installation, the premiere of two Irish adventure films, a gourmet food trail, a photo exhibition, and an expanded children’s activity camp.  You can also nourish your inner self with a range of culinary and cultural experiences unique to the area.

For those who want to explore the National Park with the benefit of local knowledge, there are guided hikes, night walks, and pony treks, urban orienteering, photo exhibitions, and self-guided loop walks for families. Wellness enthusiasts can experience Yoga & Light Therapy, Reiki, Yoga, Sunrise Vinyasa, workshops on Handstands, Yin Yoga, and a Strength and Conditioning for Hiking for over 55s.

One of the best things about the festival is that you can experience complete remoteness by day, and a town buzzing with entertainment at night! The fun won’t stop when the sun goes down as Killarney hosts the electric basecamp for the festival, harnessing the power of the Killarney UNESCO Biosphere Reserve and the bustling town to offer a compelling weekend of activities and social events.

Women in wetsuits go into the lake at Killarney at the Wander Wild Festival in 2022
Image from the Wander Wild Festival 2022

A spectacular opening Spring Equinox parade will take place through the streets to celebrate the end of winter and the rebirth of spring, and there will be a Beat Party Workout and Dance Party, and live music and entertainment in local bars over the weekend.  

Pat Chawke, Chairperson of Wander Wild Festival, said, This is a fantastic chance to explore the stunning Killarney National Park, its lakes and its mountains, in a unique way. From solo travellers to families and groups of friends, from ardent adventurers to those who just love the great outdoors, we have something for everyone, whether that’s wilderness, wellness or wanderlust! It’s about being out in nature, self-care, and the simple pleasures of going for a float, ramble, roam, stray or stroll! There are also great deals over the weekend as the festival kick starts our tourism season, so it’s a great time to explore and enjoy everything that Killarney town and the National Park has to offer.”

There’s a plentiful and diverse range of accommodation options in Killarney with something for every budget, from hostels and self-catering to four- and five-star hotels. Shuttle buses will transfer people from the town centre to all the activities making the connection from vibrant Killarney to the majestic wilderness of the surrounding natural landscape, quick and convenient!

Many events are free, and some are ticketed. Those looking to secure their preferred events or avail of early bird weekend activity packages which are now live are advised to book early to avoid disappointment

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Prerna Shah
Prerna Shah
Prerna Shah is a media and content professional with over a decade of experience in both print as well as digital. She pursues her love of a good story and storytelling by writing features, blogs, essays and interviews.

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