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Hi, great website and well done on the Irish Times article.
I was interested in your review of Bunbeg beach. When holidaying in Derrybeg during my childhood, we were always warned of strong currents off the beach in Bunbeg and never swam there. In any case, the nicest beach (in my opinion) in Gweedore is a little further to the north and it’s called Magheragallon. There is a small pier there from which a boat leaves for Gola Island and the clear water is safe to dive into from the pier at high tide. As children, my siblings and I would fish for crabs from the pier. Mageragallon actually consists of two beaches – a small beach next to the pier (from which my father taught me how to swim) and a larger beach accessible via a path from the parking area by the pier. This larger beach is backed by sand dunes and bookended by granite outcrops, one of which is partially covered at high tide and whose smooth stones at low tide are great for children to explore. The location is stunning – it is no surprise that Enya chose it to film a video for her song ‘On Your Shore’, made famous by its inclusion in the movie ‘LA Story’. Magheragallon is ideal for swimmers of all ages.
To get to Magheragallon beach, take the R257 to Derrybeg, then take the Strand Road (on your left when approaching from Bunbeg). About 200m from the golf clubhouse, the road forks – take the right fork (keeping the cemetery on your right) and you will come to the parking area by the pier.
First of all happy Monday!! My name is Helen Henderson, and I am an aquatics director at a summer camp and I teach kids, teens and counselors about swimming and swimming safety. I have been using your page http://outdoorswimming.ie/links.html for a few summers now, there is a lot of good stuff on it. Thank you so much!
I also wanted to point out a resource I stumbled upon while searching for new pages swimming safety: http://www.breezes.com/resort-resources-introduction-to-swimming.html . This page provides resources that explain the importance of swimming, swimming safety and swimming techniques. It is a very good resource for kids, and I was thinking it might be a good addition to your page as well.
Have a wonderful rest of your summer!
I just wanted to advise you on another beach in Co. Clare, also called White Strand! As you leave Spanish Point to travel towards Lahinch , about 2 kms down the road you come to a junction where turning right will take you to Miltown Malbay and carrying on to the left will continue to Lahinch. Instead of carrying on there is also a smaller road immediately to the left which will lead you down to White Strand. We holiday in Spanish Point every year and much prefer White Strand as it is much calmer and much safer. When the tide is in it is stoney but there is a nice bit of beach at low tide. But the best bit of all is that for the last three years there has been a dolphin who comes right in to the beach and swims around you – it’s amazing!
We have just returned from West Cork and also enjoyed lovely sheltered swims in the inlet at Crookhaven. Barleycove beach is beautiful but not great for swimming as there are very strong rip-tides, but nearby Ballyrisode beach was perfect for family swims and very safe.
Great site – well done on promoting these great assets.
Slight correction re. Mullaghmore in Sligo.
Sligo County Council won’t provide lifeguards (2009 & 2010) as cattle accessing beach and leaving their deposits pose too severe a Health and Safety risk for lifeguards. Seems chances of lifeguards stepping in cattle poo more risky than an unattended family beach!!
As a fellow, almost everyday, swimmer in the waters around this island I was very pleased to read of your new website. Congratulations.
I am surprised at the lack of contributions for County Cork. West Cork has some marvellous beaches. One of my favourites is a small bay, with a sandy beach, called Tragumna (Gaelic, Trá na Mòna or The Beach of the Turf) which is located about 7kmoutside Skibbereen on coastal road to Castletownshend. It is a Blue Flag standard beach with summer season lifeguards. The only negative is that, like Seapoint in Dublin, its not deep enough at low tide but at high is a great bathing spot. The coastal road runs to the east of the beach itself and behind a wall is room to sit and catch the sun (perhaps!) and a platform to plunge into deep water. Alternatively, those who like a gradual immersion should get in from the small sandy beach. The water here is nearly always crystal clear and a joy to swim in. In the centre of the bay is a small island which any reasonably strong swimmer can make and laze upon the spongy grass for a while.
I saw your website advertised on the RTE news last night.
I just wanted to add a few beaches around the Kinsale area
The Dock Beach (Jarley’s Cove) Kinsale, head out of Kinsale and turn left having crossed the bridge and it’s behind the Dock Bar. Access is down a lane way by holiday houses. Good parking, very safe.
Sandycove – Kinsale Very popular with strong swimmers that normally swim around Goat Island. Good parking and very popular with Swim Masters.
There’s lots more but here are my 2 spots for now J
Keep up the good work!
In relation to the name “The Springers” in Skerries … it
got the name due to the presence of a diving board (spring board), now long since gone. There is evidence that this place was used for swimming since at least 1929. The Springers is also the preferred site for a group of year round swimmers known as the “Frostbites” or “Frosties”. The adjacent swimming site near by on Red Island is called “The Captains”. Fingal C.C. upgraded both sites 2 years ago.
All the best from a hooked Springers addict.
I have attached the three page 2010 Sandycove Island (Kinsale) Open Water Swimming local program. On page three are local contacts in Cork. You can best improve you speed, distance, fun and safety by swimming with your nearest group (where ever you live/work).
FOR OTHER OPEN WATER SWIM LOCATIONS/GROUPS IN IRELAND: Please see:
Contact me directly if you are looking for international locations/groups.
We have three other things which may interest you:
1. In addition to the two big Cork races above – we have nearly 100 other races in Ireland. See http://www.swimireland.ie/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=642&Itemid=195 for the latest Irish schedule.
2. 313 swimmers belong to a Sandycove Island google group to get weekly and, as the summer comes along, often daily updates on the local open water swimming scene. If you want to join let me know.
3. 156 swimmers are in an Irish marathon swimming google group – many dreaming about an English Channel swim. If you have aspirations to swim 5km to 50km – again let me know.
As well find attached the 2009 open water swimming report for Ireland.
Two wonderful places to swim in Kerry Brandon Pier. This also has a tiny beach and a pub. When the tide is in it could be a swimming pool. Also great fun to jump off the Pier. Then a nice cool pint or a cuppa tea. You can sit on the pier wall or on the picnic tables and enjoy the wonderful scenery.
The Marahees. On one side you have a sheltered beach, walk across the dunes and you have waves where you can surf etc. Also beautiful scenery everywhere you look.
Love the idea of this website. Well done.
Do you have any interest in featuring Outdoor Swimming Pools in Ireland or is the website solely for natural resources
I recently joined the Charlestown Outdoor Swimming Pool committee and we will be doing a lot of work on the pool in the future. We are committed to continuing to provide an outdoor swimming facility but hope to move away from the chlorine base and apply natural anti-bacterial solutions such as Ozone technology. A new clubhouse with spacious dressing rooms and hot showers has been built in the last few years and we hope in the future to be able to market our Outdoor facility to those hoping to hop in for a swim after landing at Ireland West Airport (only 3 miles away).. on their way to those lovely natural Outdoor swimming areas you have highlighted on the website.
I absolutely loved the item in Summer Living in the Irish times 20th July regarding outdoor swimming.
I am passionate about sea swimming. I am in my late 50s, and since I learned to swim, at the age of 12, I have grown more and more passionate over the years! Like yourself, I am happy to swim parallel to the shore, pottering. It’s not the distance..it’s the experience.
On summer days, with a gentle breeze blowing, the sun on the water and maybe a few white horses running on top of the water, there is no greater pleasure than the momentary shock of the water on warm skin, then the joy of the sun on your face, and the energy in the sea. There are days when I laugh out loud, with delight, at happiness those first few moments bring.
I always keep a swimsuit and a towel in the boot of the car, in case opportunity presents itself! To drive to my home in Laytown after a hot day in the office in Dublin, to welcome the water around my tired body……….and to emerge, invigorated, ten or fifteen minutes later..aaah.
I swim mostly from late April on, and continue most years into early November, or even later. I have swum in the Atlantic, the Irish Sea, the Med, the Adriatic, the South China Sea….and, the coup de grace; in Antarctica, two years ago!
We moved to Laytown 8 years ago, and it meant I had the sea on my doorstep all year round. Laytown, Bettystown and Mornington beaches are all the one long stretch of clean golden sand. The sea is quite shallow for almost a half a mile, very safe for swimming. I try not to swim at Bettystown, because of the crowds who flock there on fine days. Laytown is less than a mile from Bettystown, and much quieter.
Alternatively, the beach at Mornington was once part of the Boyne river’s flood plain, but now, due to the construction of a sea wall, contains the tidal surge up the estuary very well. You can get a better depth of water, especially as the tide is coming is, close to the wall (but not too close!).
There is parking on the beach at Bettystown, for which there is a €2 charge; and toilet facilities at Bettystown only; shops and a couple of bistros; you can access Bettystown via the M1 motorway; take the exit for Julianstown/Bettystown./South Drogheda, and follow the road into Julianstown. Take a right hand turn as you come up the hill out of Julianstown village, and again follow the road to Laytown. The beach cannot be accessed by car at Laytown; Meath County Council want you to go to Bettystown and pay the €2 charge!
I’m Niall and I have been swimming in Triathlons now for a few years….. anyway I have a couple of spots for your web site.
Best of luck with it, I hope to use a few of your spots……
Location: Anascaul Lake, anascaul, Co Kerry (Dingle peninsula)
From Tralee take the N86. Anascaul is on the main road. ( Approx 30 km )
Go through the town and past the famous South Pole Inn (of Tom Crean fame)
After this pub take a right turn and follow the road between the mountains. No road number for this road…. Just about a road in spots.
There is a gate on the road…. As the sign says “ public Road, close gate.” You can drive all the way to the lake and further.
I swam to the other sided and back …. Then back to the south pole in for some lunch. The water was dark and pure. It was
( Pictures to be added )
There is an outdoor swimming pool in ballinakill run by the council, open in the summer.
Outdoor swimming in Castletown on the Nore as well. Popular and safe.
Best place in Dublin is the Half Moon.