The Best Places to SUP in Ireland

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We're often asked about the best places to SUP in Ireland. In particular, when you're a beginner, you want to find some spots where you can bring your board and find your feet without mother nature tipping you into the Irish Sea or Atlantic Ocean!

Below we've put together some locations that our Pod have found useful before heading out into the open waters. Remember to always wear your lifejacket.

Dublin

Name: Broadmeadow Estuary

Skill Level: Beginner

Details: Broadmeadow estuary is a sheltered estuary and lies between Swords and Malahide in North County Dublin. The water is protected from waves and is a great opportunity to find your feet. As your SUP skill level increases head out under the railway bridge towards Donabate beach.

Name: Dun Laoghaire Harbour

Skill Level: Beginner

Details: The harbour is a great place to practise your paddle boarding skills. There's usually a few people out on boards or kayaks which can be comforting. Make note of the map so that you stick to the rules of the harbour and follow the route along the wall.

Name: Clontarf Seafront

Skill Level: Beginner/Improver

Details: Head over the wooden bridge in Clontarf. There's a ramp at the boat club which can provide an easy access point with your SUP to the water. Make your way under the wooden bridge and Poolbeg will dominate the skyline. As the larger ferries come in, this can cause some choppy waves. If you fancy a challenge head out to the lighthouse and back. 

 

Name: Ireland's Eye

Skill Level: Expert

Details: A lovely paddle but you have to know the tides and wind. Head off from Howth harbour around an hour before high tide and with a low wind forecast. Takes about 45 minutes. Plenty of sea birds and seals along the way.

Galway

Galway is blessed with hundreds of kilometres of epic coastlines. In Connemara, you'll find some blue seas and great beaches and so we've added our favourites below.

Name: Dog's Bay

Skill Level: Beginner

Details: Sheltered water and crystal clear, a perfect place for a paddle. Depending on tides and the time of year, there can be a lot of jellyfish, including the Lion's Mane, so keep an eye out on the water.

Name: Ballyconneely Bay Beach/Mannin Bay (Next to the Connemara Sands Hotel)

Skill Level: Beginner

Details: Head to the west of the hotel for some sheltered waters and explore some of the stunning cliffs and hidden beaches. 

Cork

Name: Barley Cove

Skill Level: Beginner/Intermediate

Details: Barley Cove is a clean, blue flag, lifeguarded beach, providing the perfect environment for some SUP. Practise your surfing with some of the waves along the wild Atlantic Way.

Name: Crookhaven

Skill Level: Beginner/Intermediate

Details: Crookhaven is really small but it is bordered by some of the clearest water you can paddle. The village comes alive in the Summer months so there's plenty to eat and drink!

Wicklow

Name: Magheramore Beach

Skill Level: Beginner/Intermediate

Details: Beautiful sand, pristine blue water, sheltered and uncrowded. One of the few places on the East coast to boast decent waves. Unfortunately parking is an issue and due to the lands surrounding the beach being sold during 2021, Magheramore is shrouded in uncertainty.

Donegal

Donegal has more coastline than any other county in Ireland and so there's plenty of hidden gems throughout this county.

Name: Bundoran

Skill Level: Beginner/Intermediate

Details: Head to the harbour to launch and paddle over to the Peak. On a calm, clear day, you can see the reef. There's some diving boards where you can jump into the sea from or for a bigger splash use the cliff.

Want to see your favourite spots listed? Email hello@orcaboard.ie

If you'd like your SUP school listed, get in touch.