Kerry scoops the top spot in TripAdvisor's top 10 Irish beaches

Summer is a few months away yet but with the shops filled with swimwear it's hard not to think of playing hookie and heading to the beach.

Given the view outside, a wild and beautiful beach will have to do and according to TripAdvisor we've plenty of those.

It seems the Kingdom of Kerry is the big place to go, having scooped four of the top ten beaches in Ireland, according to the travel site's annual Travellers’ Choice Best Beaches survey.

Irish beaches didn't make it into the top 25 beaches in Europe - La Concha Beach in San Sebastian in Spain was the favourite, with Baia Do Sancho Beach in Brazil named as the best beach in the world - but we still have some exceptionally windswept strands.

Banna Strand in Tralee, Co Kerry came out on top in Ireland's best beaches of 2017, taking the crown from previous three-years-in-a-row winner Inchydoney, Co Cork.

All but three of the top 10 - Strandhill, Coumeenoole and Dog’s Bay - were awarded Blue Flag bathing status in 2016, meaning they met the requirements of the EU Bathing Water Directive.

Check out this interactive map below to find the nearest great beach to you.

Here's the list in full - start planning those trips to the coast now!

1. Banna Strand, Co Kerry

This Atlantic-side beach features the mountains of the Dingle Peninsula on the horizon.

Historically, Banna Strand is associated with Roger Casement who was captured on 21 April 1916, having landed from a German U-Boat. Casement was involved in an attempt to land arms for Irish Republicans from the German vessel the Aud.

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2. Inchydoney beach, Co Cork

The Blue Flag beach at Inchydoney Island, just a few miles from Clonakilty, is known as a surfer's paradise.

Expect vast expanses of sand, dunes, and secret little coves along the coastline.

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3. Derrynane beach, Co Kerry

Derrynane Beach is a sheltered sandy beach located right on the Ring of Kerry with a natural harbour. It is a Blue Flag Beach, which is lifeguarded during the bathing season, making it an ideal family-friendly spot.

4. Inch beach, Co Kerry

Fun fact: Inch strand is famous for being the location of the films Ryan’s Daughter and The Playboy of the Western World.

5. Strandhill, Co Sligo

An area of great natural beauty located just five miles west of Sligo town with panoramic views of Knocknarea and Benbulben, this is another sport with great surf.

Just be advised, due to dangerous currents and tides, it is recommended not to swim from this beach.

6. Coumeenoole beach, Co Kerry

The hills rising either side of the cove are spotted with old stone walls, sheep, cottages and fields, making this a charming little stretch of sand.

7. Barleycove beach, Co Cork

This is a remote beach and the Barleycove area has a large sandy beach backed by sand dunes.

Situated between two headlands on the Mizen Peninsula in West Cork, it also has a floating bridge in place to reduce visitor impact on natural surroundings.

8. Curracloe beach, Co Wexford

One of the most popular beaches in Ireland, its seven-mile-long beach is famous for its soft and fine sand. You might recognise this as the site where the epic D-Day scene from Saving Private Ryan was filmed.

Can you recognise it?

9. Narin/Portnoo beach, Co Donegal

Narin is a sheltered cove beach approximately 2km long on the Atlantic coast of Ireland.

It boasts Blue Flag status, and if you look out to sea the first sight is the island of Inishkeel.

10. Dog’s Bay beach, Co Galway

Gurteen Beach and Dog’s Bay lie back-to-back, forming a tombolo jutting out into the Atlantic Ocean.

Perfectly sheltered with crystal clear waters, Dog's Bay was a landmark destination of many an Irish family's holidays.

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