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Five Of The Best Surfing Spots In Ireland

John Balfe
By John Balfe
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Hawaii, Okinawa, Vancouver Island...Bundoran??

Ireland's position on the westernmost point of Europe means that our shores often feel the brunt of the Atlantic's fury as it batters our coastline all year round. The occasionally unsociable weather on our west coast has contributed to the atmosphere out there. Gusty winds and rain in every season are part of the fabric in that part of Ireland, but one advantage to the abrasive weather conditions can be seen on the beaches in Bundoran, Lahinch and practically everywhere in between.

Sure, our beaches might not have the same weather as some of those in California and nor are they as idyllic-looking as Vancouver Island but in terms of a pure unadulterated surfing experience, there are few places on the face of the earth that can rival the west coast of Ireland.

Where are the best surf spots in the Emerald Isle? Read on...

Lahinch, Co. Clare

Lahinch is constantly being voted among the best surf spots in Ireland. The beach here has something for everyone of all skill levels whether you're a beginner or searching for the 50 year storm like Bodhi in Point Break, you should find what you're looking for here.


Lahinch Surf School is run by former professional surfer John McCarthy and there's really no better man to take tips from than him.

Bundoran, Co. Donegal

You know a town is serious about surfing when it hosts a three day Surf n' Music festival every year but even if you can't make it there for that weekend (and we really recommend that you try), there's still some excellent surfing to be had in the small Donegal town of Bundoran all year round.


Ballybunion, Co. Kerry

The winner of international awards, the beach at Ballybunion in Co. Kerry has been known as one of the best surf spots in the country for more than 20 years now.

Much some of the other spots on this list, Ballybunion has something for surfers of every skillset. The waves closer to shore are easier to handle for novices, while if you fancy yourself as something of a Kelly Slater head on out to the Atlantic Cliff Breaks for a more white-knuckle experience.

Incheydoney, Co. Cork

Having won the honour of being described as the 'best beach in Ireland', you know that Inchydoney in Cork will be something special. While it doesn't quite have the calibre of waves of the likes of Lahinch or Bundoran, it makes up for the lack of firepower with its pictureseque views.


Inchydoney probably won't satisfy experienced surfers, but for beginners looking to stand on a board for the first time? There's no better spot in Ireland.

Inch, Co. Kerry

Inch beach is, in fact, three miles long and ideal for families with young children who might be looking for a more family-friendly surfing experience (there are lifeguards on duty during summer months). Inch has been featured in Hollywood movies like Ryan's Daughter and Far & Away and, once you set foot on the beach, it's easy to see why. One of the best looking beaches in Ireland and the proud owner of a blue flag, Inch beach also houses a its own surf school so whether you're a veteran or a novice, you'll feel right at home.

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