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Island News
NEWCOMER: Doolin Express is the newest and fastest addition on services between Co. Clare and the Aran Islands
Ferry
#NewFastFerry- The newest and largest fastferry between Doolin and the Aran Islands has recently begun operations with reduced sailings times by half, writes Jehan Ashmore. Introduction of Doolin Express is a major advancement in the upgrade of the fleet for…
The custom-built Spirit of Rathlin has finally entered service on the route linking Church Bay,Rathlin Island to Ballycastle, Co. Antrim,
Island News
#EntersService – The new custom-built car ferry Spirit of Rathlin has finally entered service with a first scheduled sailing today on the Rathlin Island link with Ballycastle on the Antrim mainland, writes Jehan Ashmore. Spirit of Rathlin built by Arklow…
Decorated US diver Greg Louganis is the new sports director of the Red Bull Cliff Diving World Series
Island News
#CliffDiving - World famous Olympic diver Greg Louganis will attend the Red Bull Cliff Diving World Series event in the Aran Islands later this month as the competition’s new sports director, as Galway Bay FM reports. The five-time world champion…
As the Arklow-built Belfast registered car-ferry Spirit of Rathlin has yet to enter service off the Antrim coast, Afloat also takes this opportunity to reveal another scene of the small ship taken in Greystones earlier this year. The newbuild became the first ever car-ferry to call to the redeveloped Co. Wicklow harbour that was completed in recent years. In the immediate foreground is the circular top of the East Pierhead, close to original harbour footprint where the damaged base of the Kish Lighthouse had occupied.
Ferry
#Newbuild - A new customer for Mooney Boats of Killybegs, Spirit of Rathlin in which Afloat previously reported calling to the yard for work can now be further revealed, writes Jehan Ashmore. The 6 vehicle / 140 passenger ferry Spirit…
Skellig Michael's traditional visitor season opening date of 30 March was pushed back by six weeks in 2015
Island News
#SkelligMichael - Skellig Islands boatman Sean ‘Seanie’ Murphy has brought a High Court action over limits on the visitor season at Skellig Michael, as BreakingNews.ie reports. Murphy claims the move by the Department of Transport, Tourism and Sport to move…
Beaches usually take years to form via deposits from water currents, like Dollymount on Bull Island
Coastal Notes
#CoastalNotes - A beach on Achill Island lost to storms 33 years ago has returned after a freak Easter tide. And locals at Dooagh are celebrating the return of their 300-metre sandy strand that in more recent years has been…
The oldest large car ferry of the CalMac fleet, Isle of Arran on a summer crossing mid-way from Brodick, Arran on the Firth of Clyde bound for Ardrossan. The scene was taken from on board Caledonian Isles that also operates the route year-round.
Ferry
#Aran&Arran – A passenger freightship that served the Aran Islands notably from Galway and a present day car ferry running to Arran, Scotland have similarities, writes Jehan Ashmore. The custom-built Oileáin Árann (see photo) completed in 1991 at James Miller…
The Rathlin Sound Maritime Festival runs from Friday, May 26, to Sunday, June 4.
Island News
Rathlin is the only inhabited island off the Northern Ireland Coast and we think we are part of this island nation writes Tom MacSweeney. Our festival is about to happen celebrating all things Maritime and we would like as many…
Minister for Transport Shane Ross and local independent T.D. Michael Healy Rae recently travelled on board the ageing God Met Ons III (1963/95gt) to meet the board of directors of Valentia Island Ferries to discuss possible funding of a new ferry. Subject to Government funding, VIF are notably seeking an Irish yard to build the 18 car/95 passenger ferry.
Island News
#NewFerry - The future of the Valentia Island ferry in Co Kerry remains in doubt as God Met Ons III dating to 1963, easily the country’s oldest domestic ferry, will no longer meets marine safety requirements, writes Jehan Ashmore. The…
Former Aran Islands passenger-freight ferry Oileáin Árann currently has a career in Icelandic coastal waters serving a pair of islands. The livery is also an advert for the nation's famous wooly jumpers!
Ferry
#ÁrannSæfari - The return of Ireland's largest domestic freighter, Bláth na Mara, this week on the Galway-Aran Islands routes recalls memories of a predecessor that remains in service albeit in Icelandic waters, writes Jehan Ashmore. The predecessor is not to…
Concerns over the future of the Valentia Island car ferry service which Afloat adds is operated by the 1963 built God Met Ons III. The vessel is at Reenard Point on the inaugural day of operations in July 1996 with the backdrop of Knightstown, Valentia Island.
Island News
#ValentiaFerry - There are concerns over the future of the Valentia Island carferry service as the vessel of more than 50 years will no longer meet marine safety requirements, reported RTE Six One News. Islanders of the Co. Kerry island…
Bláth na Mara as seen underway in March following work carried out in Killybegs, however further maintenance took place in her homeport of Galway.
Island News
#AranFreighters - Ireland’s Iargest domestic coastal cargoship finally returned to Galway-Aran Islands service following more than one month of maintenance carried out in the mid-west port, writes Jehan Ashmore. The 330 gross tonnage Bláth na Mara operated by Lasta Mara…
A currach on the shore on Inishbofin, which sees the launch of its latest community-build traditional boat this May Bank Holiday weekend
Historic Boats
#Currach - The first of four new community-built currachs launches from Inishbofin this afternoon (Sunday 30 April), as Galway Bay FM reports. Young people from the Connemara island have been heavily involved in the traditional boat-building project, funded via the…
Current Rathlin Island serving carferry, Canna operates the service. The Rathlin Ferry Co are to introduce the newbuild Spirit of Rathlin on completion of crew training and certification from the MCA.
Island News
#Old&Newferry – Ferry services to Rathlin Island are operating though the new carferry Spirit of Rathin built in Arklow, remains undergoing essential crew training and certification from the Maritime Coastguard Agency, writes Jehan Ashmore. The £2.8 newbuild car ferry built…
Skellig Michael as seen in the trailer for Star Wars: The Last Jedi
Island News
#SkelligMichael - Skellig Michael’s opening for summer visitors on 14 May has been cast into doubt by concerns over of a number of unstable large rocks following a rockfall discovered earlier this month. Safety contractors and OPW staff are currently…
Skellig Michael off Co Kerry
Island News
#IslandNews - A serious rockfall on Skellig Michael has been described as “deeply worrying” by a senior conservationist. RTÉ News reports that the rockfall was discovered during pre-season checks by OPW staff last Friday (7 April), close to accommodation huts…

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