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All Destinations

West Coast

South Coast

Irish Marinas

This page is
excerpted from:

Cruising the Wild Atlantic Way

SSCA Cruising Station

OCC Port Officer

Trans Ocean

Cruising Around Ireland

IrelandTo quote a German skipper we met recently: “Ireland is worth to stay there for a longer time. It is a beautiful country with kind and helpful people, who makes the stay there an enjoyable adventure.”

We tend to agree wholeheartedly with his assessment!

If you get a chance to cruise in Ireland - particularly along the west and south coasts, whether on your own boat or on a charter, you’ll be rewarded with some of the most spectacular and unspoiled cruising grounds in the world. Cruising the coast of Ireland may not be everyone’s cup of tea, certainly not for those needing the creature comforts of marinas and their amenities. There simply are none along the west coast.

There are many places worth pulling in to for a few hours or a few days. Rather than list them all, we will touch on some of the major ones that allow cruisers to hop along this dramatic coastline. Many of the harbours have yellow visitor moorings, although it is reported that they are not being routinely serviced in some harbours. For more destinations, read on:


An excellent resource for places to go and things to know along the west coast of Ireland is our book Cruising the Wild Atlantic Way. It is available on Amazon in both print and Kindle format.

Whether by sea or by land, Cruising the Wild Atlantic Way provides visitors to the west of Ireland with information about what to know before they go and what they will find when they get there. It provides a logical route with suggested stops in picturesque harbours, villages, and islands along the way from Donegal to Cork. It encourages visitors to see the land as it was seen by explorers centuries ago along one of the most unspoiled stretches of coastline in Europe.

For more information about Cruising the Wild Atlantic Way, click on the Amazon links below, or visit our sister site, White Seahorse Publishing, where you can also view a short video about the book.

West Coast

South Coast

and much more to come....

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Weather wise April, May and June are often spectacular months. This region is heavily weather dependent as there is a lot of ocean off its coasts. The winds blow predominantly from the west making this west coast a lee shore and the weather can change unexpectedly. The coastal currents can also be strong, often developing a nasty chop. Like elsewhere, weather forecasting has improved over the years and the marine forecast issued by the met office is broadcast on the regional coast guard VHF stations. It is then repeated at intervals in its original form throughout the day unless a change is warranted.

Marine Weather Map

Cruising the Wild Atlantic Way

US Print Edition
UK Print Edition
US Kindle Edition
UK Kindle Edition

Sailing Directions

Charts for these regions are largely based on admiralty surveys from the 1800s. Updated paper and digital charts often simply have less data than the old originals. In addition, what you see on GPS chart plotter can often be quite different from reality. Navigational aids are limited, and are often not included on the chart. Unmarked rocks and shoals are abundant along this coastline. Careful navigation ‘the old way’ and experienced seamanship are required for safe passage.

Updated periodically by its members, the Irish Cruising Club ( publishes two comprehensive books of sailing directions for Ireland that are well worth having on board:

South & West Coasts of Ireland Sailing Directions

Sailing Directions for the East and North Coasts of Ireland

Cruising Ireland

Covering the entire coast of Ireland, Cruising Ireland is intended as a companion to the well-known two-volume set of Sailing Directions issued by Irish Cruising Club Publications. Written by Mike Balmforth and Norman Keane, editor of ICC’s Sailing Directions, Cruising Ireland covers the aspects that are not covered in the Sailing Directions, including the history, the folk lore, the geology, archaeological sites, wildlife and scenery. It notes what to look for and what to do ashore.

Click here for our review

Cruising Ireland: A Companion to the Irish Cruising Club Sailing Directions

Joy of sailingCoastal Boating (Reg. in Ireland No. 443222) is a division of Knowledge Clinic Ltd.
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