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Displaying items by tag: Sea swim

Instead of Christmas swims, Howth RNLI fundraisers in County Dublin are asking Howth peninsula swimmers to "DIP & DONATE" to the RNLI anytime between December 19th and Jan 7th.

Howth RNLI has posters with a printed QR code (see above) for scanning by camera phone to take swimmers directly to the RNLI Justgiving page, Howth RNLI's Rose Michael told Afloat.

Mass Christmas sea swims, often held in aid of charities, such as the RNLI, have been discouraged this year due to pandemic measures to kerb social gatherings.

Howth Lifeboat Station continues to rely on voluntary contributions and legacies for income. It is only through thoughtful gifts and donations that the RNLI is able to provide our volunteer lifeboat crews with the boats, facilities, equipment and training that are essential to save lives at sea.

Since 1825 an all-weather lifeboat has launched into Dublin Bay from Howth and the crews have been honoured with 20 awards for gallantry.

Today the station operates both a Trent class lifeboat and an inshore D class lifeboat.

Published in Sea Swim
Tagged under

A “giant-size” towel collage has been spread out at Blackrock’s Seapoint shoreline in Dublin Bay on Saturday to highlight the need for action over Dublin Bay water quality.

Open water swimmers suspended hostilities over whether dry robes or towels were more socially acceptable to participate in the peaceful initiative - at a social distance.

SOS Dublin Bay, which organised the gesture, is calling for increased testing of bathing water quality.

It is seeking real-time reporting of results “in recognition of all-year-round bathing which has become more common in Dublin”.

SOS Dublin Bay chairman Gerry Jones said record numbers of people were now swimming in the bay all year round.

He said that “local authorities need to recognise this reality by ensuring that bathing water quality readings are provided on an ongoing basis to the general public”.

He said there should be regular publication of all appropriate public health guidance particularly when the water is polluted.

“Thousands of people are now taking to the waters in Dublin Bay every day, yet we are simultaneously witnessing the appalling spectacle of raw sewage being dumped into the bay at Ringsend after heavy periods of rainfall,” he said.

A scene at the Forty Foot bathing place during Winter 2020A scene at the Forty Foot bathing place at the southern tip of Dublin Bay during Winter 2020

“We can’t put people’s health on hold while we wait for a promised upgrade of the Ringsend sewage treatment plant which won’t happen till at least 2025,” he said.

There are “ creative interim solutions” at to prevent Irish Water dumping sewage into the Liffey estuary and onward into the bay, he said, and SOS Dublin Bay aims to publish several proposals in the new year.

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has acknowledged the risks to water quality after periods of heavy rainfall which result in overflow from storm drains and from the Ringsend sewage treatment plant, among other sources.

Rainwater run off at Sandycove Point on Dublin Bay from Afloat Magazine on Vimeo.

However, it says it is awaiting a review of the EU Bathing Water Quality directive before recommending any legislative changes to allow for greater frequency of , and more detailed scope of, testing here.

Under current regulations, local authorities are only required to test bathing water quality once a month between May and September. Some local authorities test more frequently, but results are slow.

The tests under the EU bathing water quality directive are limited to E.coli (EC) and Intestinal enterococci (IE), based on World Health Organisation research.

Dublin Bay Swimmers Call Truce in Dry Robe Wars in Support of a Cleaner Dublin BayDublin Bay swimmers call a truce in Dry Robe wars and lay out their towels in support of a cleaner Dublin Bay  - 18611 is the current number of signatures to the online petition for a cleaner bay Photo: One minute forty

University College Dublin (UCD) microbiologist Prof Wim Meijer explains that most E.coli are harmless.

However, VeroToxigenic E coli strains, contracted from ingesting water contaminated with animal faeces or from undercooked meat or contaminated salads, produce a powerful toxin which can cause “a range of symptoms, from bloody diarrhoea to kidney failure and may cause fatalities”

Prof Dearbháile Morris, director of NUI Galway (NUIG) Ryan Institute’s Centre for One Health, said current testing systems are outdated, as they only look for the total number of e-coli in a 100ml sample and not the detail.

A system for live bathing water monitoring named EU SWIM is at an advance stage, co-ordinated by UCD computer scientist Prof Gregory O’Hare and involving Prof Meijer.

The SOS petition is here

Published in Dublin Bay

A swimmer has died after getting into difficulty as Hawk Cliff in Dalkey in Killney Bay yesterday.

The accident happened after the Irish Coast Guard based in Dun Laoghaire Harbour received a call about a swimmer in difficulty.  

Emergency services including the National Ambulance Service, Dublin Fire Brigade, a HSE doctor and local gardai attended at the scene. 

After locating the casualty in the water, they were brought from the water to nearby Coliemore Harbour for urgent medical treatment but sadly passed away.

The Irish Coast Guard said: "Irish Coast Guard - Dun Laoghaire were tasked to a report of a swimmer in difficulty at Hawks Cliff bathing area, with RNLI Dun Laoghaire

Lifeboat Station ILB, National Ambulance Service (NAS), Dublin Fire Brigade, a HSE Doctor and local Gardaí also responding.

Published in Dublin Bay

The alarm was raised shortly after 8 am this morning at Sandycove on Dublin Bay when a male was found unresponsive in the water at the Forty Foot Bathing Place.

Coast Guard, Ambulance Service & Gardaí are at the scene and the Garda has a cordon in place at the popular sea swim spot.

A Garda spokesman told Afloat 'No further details are currently available'.

Published in Dublin Bay

There are many variations to the sport of swimming. But, long-distance swimming is on another level, and what Donegal man Henry O'Donnell is attempting at the moment he calls an Expedition. He will try to swim around the Island of Ireland to become the first person in history to circumnavigate a country by Finswimming and in doing so will help to raise funds for two National Charities, Water Safety Ireland and the Irish Cancer Society.

Finswim2020-21 is one of the most inspiring, unique, and challenging marine projects ever attempted in Irish coastal waters. Expedition Leader O'Donnell began his challenge, which he thought may take a year, from Carrickfin in the Donegal Gaeltacht, and is the creator of this pioneering project. He had thought of the idea of the circumnavigation in 1990 when he was recovering from a life-threatening sports accident (which left him paralysed for some time), and in 1992 he went on to complete several challenging land-based expeditions and sea swims to raise funds for charities and other worthy causes.

Tor Dearg is the Finswim 2020-21 support boat Round IrelandTor Dearg is the Finswim 2020-21 support boat Round Ireland

He loves sport in general, healthy living and has a close affinity with the sea and nature. He completed demanding expeditions around the world in recent years including lowest to highest points on four continents; Africa, Europe, America and Australia – he is confident that finswim2020-21 will be equal or more challenging than many expeditions and adventures previously were undertaken.

The event was scheduled to start in June 2021. Still, due to the COVID crisis, work situation and other factors, it was necessary to reorganise, and Henry decided to bring the Expedition forward to 2020. So, on 17th September the 56-year-old walked into the sea at Carrickfin beach in the hope of becoming the first person to accomplish such a challenge. Fin-swimming, as the name suggests, involves the use of fins on the water surface, with a snorkel and mask. O'Donnell also wears a custom-made triathlon suit to combat icy temperatures.

Henry has many strings to his bow – a qualified beach guard, specialist diver, swimming teacher and ex Irish Army Special Forces – and then there's his day job – an aviation security advisor. And many achievements too – the first Irishman to swim the 14km around Tory Island and a 38k Donegal Coastal challenge.

It fits therefore that the supporting Expedition vessel is the Tor Dearg, the Tory Island fast ferry skippered by William Duggan with photographer and cameraman Rory O'Donnell on board to document the venture.

On the clockwise swim, Henry's passage took him to Tory Island, Downings, Glengad near Malin Head, Portrush, through the fast-flowing Rathlin Sound after a stop on Rathlin Island; Glenarm in County Antrim, then into Belfast Lough at Carrickfergus before carrying on south along the North Down coast between Copeland Island and Old Lighthouse Island off Donaghadee. It was then down the Ards Peninsula to Portavogie where he halted to take a break back in Bangor where the Tor Dearg berthed in the Marina on Monday (19th October). Harbour Master Kevin Baird welcomed them. " We are delighted to welcome and support Henry O'Donnell on his epic adventure to swim around the Island of Ireland. Henry arrived into Bangor shortly after the tragic death of local sea swimmer Mary Feeney, and it was extremely thoughtful of him to dedicate a section of his swim in her memory. We also applauded his efforts to raise money for both the Irish Cancer Society and Water Safety Ireland. We wish him every success as he continues his courageous mission". According to his Facebook page, Henry has swum between 16 and 21 miles a day.

While in County Down Henry has joined some of the local open water swim clubs – the Helen's Bay Watch, the Brompton Beaus and Belles near the Marina, and the Chunky Dunkers at Donaghadee. Henry appreciated their support. " I wish to thank all of the sea swimmers in the Bangor coastal area for the invaluable support, friendship and kindness during my swim in the beautiful but challenging north Channel. I thank Harbourmaster, Mr Kevin Baird and his team for their professional assistance and for sponsoring the expedition vessel berth during our time in Bangor. The Carrickfergus Harbour team went out of their way too in support of the charity event".

The Expedition will leave Portavogie shortly, destination Ardglass on the South Down coast, subject of course to the wind and sea state, before continuing onward south. They have an exemption from the 5km travel restriction rule in the Republic and are following strict Covid-19 guidance and regulations both ashore and onboard the Tor Dearg.

For more info, visit www.finswim2020.com.

Published in Sea Swim
Tagged under

If there is an ill wind that doesn’t blow some good, it is the numbers taking to the sea and inland waterways during Covid-19.

As The Sunday Times reports today, this season has been the busiest ever for outdoor pursuit providers.

Eileen Murphy of Shearwater Sea Kayaking in north Dublin says her courses are booked out to the end of November.

“We didn’t resume fully after the lockdown until June, as our courses were for regulars in May, but we have never been busier,” Murphy says.

“I know the pandemic has been really tough and hard on people, but the one bright spark has been the number of people who have discovered their coastline – whether it be the Inishkeas off Mayo or Inishmurray off Sligo or Cork’s Roaringwater Bay,” she says

Record numbers have taken up open water swimming – both on the coast and in inland waterways – and many are expected to extend the activity into the winter, once Covid 19 travel restrictions permit.

Open water swimming

Miriam Coleman has been a regular sea swimmer for the past 12 years and says she would find joy in a “puddle” - but loves the ladies bathing shelter at Clontarf.

“You might regret not getting in, but you never regret getting in,” Coleman, who swims year-round, explains.

In Galway, the annual Frances Thornton Memorial Swim, held in aid of Cancer Care West, attracting large numbers for a “virtual” swim where participants could complete a 13 km distance in their own time during August.

Some 450 of over 500 entrants in Ireland and across the world raised €170,000 for Cancer Care West, a substantial increase on their normal anticipated figure for the event.

Surfing, paddle-boarding and windsurfing normally continue over the winter month, but their popularity will be boosted by a new film - not yet released -which recently won an award at the Portuguese Surf Film Festival.

Elisabeth Clyne, Shauna Ward, Katie McAnenaElisabeth Clyne, Shauna Ward and Katie McAnena

Elizabeth Clyne, Katie McAnena and Shauna Ward - all based in the north-west, have been profiled in a 12-minute documentary entitled Ebb and Flow made by photographer Alice Ward.

Ward, a Dubliner, was always a sea swimmer. During lockdown, her long-distance swimming dad John introduced several neighbours – Jen Faherty and Billy Hann - to its delights, and they swam 12 km from Lambay island to Balscadden beach in Howth in July.

The three women interviewed by Ward for her film describe how the cold water environment can “reset” their system, both physically and mentally.

McAnena, a Sligo-based GP from Galway, windsurfed “Jaws”, the big wave surfing break at Pe’ahi in Hawaii back in 2013. Her husband, Finn Mullen, had surfed it several years previously.

Last January, the couple were among five people to windsurf a record wave at Mullaghmore. McAnena, the first woman, was captured on film by videographer Clem McInerney.

Former Army Ranger Henry O’Donnell is currently attempting the first solo fin swim around Ireland for Water Safety Ireland and the Irish Cancer Society

former Army Ranger Henry O'Donnell who is swimming around Ireland for Water Safety Ireland and the Irish Cancer Society  Photo:  Rory O’DonnellFormer Army Ranger Henry O'Donnell who is swimming around Ireland for Water Safety Ireland and the Irish Cancer Society Photo: Rory O’Donnell

“I’m at this 52 years, and I feel at home in the water, but it doesn’t have to be a big climb to enjoy it,” he says.

“People don’t even have to join a club – the pods of dolphins around the coast are also now pods of swimmers, and one just has to be aware of safety.”

Water safety

Water Safety Ireland’s highly informative website has safety tips and advice for open water swimming, including never swimming alone, very gradual acclimatisation to colder temperatures, risks of cold water shock – and emphasis on checking tides and weather. Download WSI safety advice on the PDF below.

Read more in The Sunday Times here

Published in Water Safety
21st August 2020

RNLI Helvick Swim Cancelled

The 2020 RNLI Helvick Sponsored Swim in County Waterford which was scheduled for Sunday, September 13, has been cancelled due to the revised Covid-19 restrictions.

It would have been the 26th year of the event which was a major fundraiser for the RNLI and social occasion in Waterford.

Published in Sea Swim
Tagged under

Swimmers, surfers and paddlers are being asked to participate in research on the risk of superbugs which is being conducted by NUI Galway (NUIG).

The NUIG scientists are examining how superbugs are picked up and how the spread of antibiotic-resistant bacteria can be controlled.

Up to 300 volunteers are being sought – as in a group of 150 sea swimmers, surfers and other regular participants in sea, lake and river activities, and another group of 150 people who rarely take to the water.

The PIER study (Public Health Impact of Exposure to antibiotic Resistance in recreational waters) is being undertaken by the NUIG Antimicrobial Resistance and Microbial Ecology Research Group.

It is funded by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the researchers hope that the findings will “contribute to improving policy regarding environmental monitoring of antibiotic resistance and the release of waste containing superbugs to recreational waters”.

Sampling of bathing water only needs to take place once a month between May and September under the 2006 EU Bathing Water Directive, but the EPA says some local authorities test more frequently. However, testing for antibiotic superbugs does not take place.

Galway sea swimmers have been seeking more frequent testing and more transparency on results.

Principal PIER project investigator Prof Dearbháile Morris explains that “in healthy people, antibiotic-resistant bacteria behave very similarly to other common bugs and live harmlessly on the skin, in the nose or in the bowel”.

“This is called colonisation. As long as a bug stays on the skin or in the bowel, it usually does not cause a problem,”she says.

“However, once a superbug gets into a wound, into the bladder or into the blood, it can cause an infection that can be difficult to treat,” she says, and this happens to people with weaker immune systems, such as those in intensive care, the very old or the very young.

Special antibiotics are then required for treatment, as ordinary antibiotics do not work, she says.

“Unfortunately, superbugs can transfer easily from healthy colonised people to vulnerable people,” she notes.

“The more people who are colonised with antibiotic-resistant bugs, the higher the risk that these bugs will spread to vulnerable people and cause serious infection,” she says.

PIER’s co-investigator Dr Liam Burke says some superbugs are now very common in the environment, due to increased antibiotic use in humans and animals and the release of sewage, manure and effluent containing antibiotics and antibiotic-resistant superbugs.

“Although bathing waters are routinely tested for some bacteria, they are not tested for antibiotic-resistant bacteria, so we don’t really know to what extent they are present,” Dr Burke says.

“ PIER will look into whether people who regularly use Irish waters for recreation are at risk of becoming colonised with superbugs.”.

Anyone aged 18 or over who lives on the island of Ireland can participate, and more information is here

Published in Sea Swim
Tagged under

Northern Ireland’s coastline is dotted with cold water swimmers who go out no matter what the weather or temperature. The group who swim near Jenny Watts Cave just past Wilson’s Point at Bangor on Belfast Lough are known as the Brompton Belles and Beaux Dippers, taking their name from the nearby road.

Using a decoy Goose as a turning mark was the idea of Nicola Woods who thought it would make a fun swim buoy. Not only is it great fun and a talking point, but from a safety perspective, it is positioned 150m round the reef. Swimmers can use this as a marker and slowly build up to swimming the 300m round the Goose.

Brompton Belles and Beaux Dippers was set up by Marie-Thérèse Davis-Hanson in 2017. Her objective was to establish a group so that anyone who wanted to swim could connect with a swim buddy and not swim alone. Safety of the swimmers is paramount and for this reason, the group offer advice and guidance for anyone thinking of trying open water swimming.

Jenny Watts Cave at BangorThe Jenny Watts Cave

The rig was put together by Stephen Hanson and Paul Zund and put in position by Nicola, Stephen and Paul on 24th June 2020. (Paul’s other quite different interest is motor boating and he has a Sea Ray in Bangor Marina). The Goose has been causing a stir since then – in a positive way. Nicola says that she has some smaller ducks that she has plans for, so watch this space. Hopefully, the Goose will survive the next big North Westerly.

The group now has over 450 members and regularly participates in activities to raise money for charity, particularly Motor Neurone Disease Association as Marie-Thérèse’s brother has MND.

An interesting feature of the coast where the Brompton group swim is the Jenny Watts Cave. A local legend tells the tale of a local girl of that name who hid in the cave at low tide but was drowned when the tide came in. Her name lives on at the popular pub in High Street.

Safety is the main consideration for the Dippers and each swimmer always goes out at their own risk and is responsible for their own safety at all times. Tow-floats are advisable as the waters are often busy with boats, kayaks, yachts, lobster boats and paddleboarders. A brightly coloured swim hat and is also recommended as are post-swim hot drinks!

Published in Belfast Lough
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As open water sea swimmers prepare for a Galway Bay crossing this weekend, Irish Water has said there is “no proven link” between a recent serious pollution incident in the city and the quality of bathing water off Galway’s beaches writes Lorna Siggins

However, swimmers have called for more regular and longer-term bathing water quality testing, and more transparency in relation to water quality issues.

Six weeks ago, Galway City Council prohibited swimming off beaches at Silver Strand and Salthill and issued a warning about Grattan road beach in Lower Salthill, after elevated levels of bacteria were detected.

The prohibitions were lifted in time for the June bank holiday weekend, and the city council initially ruled out several possibilities, including Mutton Island sewage treatment plant, visiting cruise ships and slurry spreading run-off.

It subsequently stated that the elevated levels of bacteria were due to a fault with the test.

A month later, on July 5th, Galway harbourmaster Capt Brian Sheridan stated in response to media queries that “the current sewage issue is not as a result of port operational activities, including cruise ships that anchor in the bay”.

Galway Bay is a popular destination for cruise ships, which are covered by the international MARPOL regulations. Vessels from another flag state can only discharge treated sewage at least three nautical miles from the nearest land or untreated sewage at least 12 nautical miles from the nearest land.

Capt Sheridan stressed that he issued Galway Port Company’s own prohibition notices, stating that ships must be at least 12 nautical miles west of the Aran islands.

Capt Sam Field Corbett, who owns the old dock known as the “Mud docks” in the inner Galway harbour, said he believed the source of contamination could be linked to a sewage overflow, which he first reported to Galway City Council in March, and to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) in early May when there was no action.

Galway Bay waterCapt Sam Field Corbett sent this photo to the EPA in May. Corbett says it depicts evidence of sewage and waste at low tide in the Galway city mud dock

On May 15th, he informed the EPA that it appeared the sewage had stopped flowing, but evidence of human waste was still present in what he described as “once a thriving eco-system”

On June 14th, Irish Water announced that it was upgrading one of Galway’s Victorian sewer systems, which would address “odour and blockage issues” , as part of a 2 million euro project with Galway County Council due for completion in October.

Irish Water has confirmed that a sewer blockage had caused an overflow at the Mud Docks, and this was “cleared”, and a pipe in Eyre Square repaired.

It said that RPS consultants were separately conducting survey works across the entire Galway city network.

“There is no proven link to the issue at the Mud docks and any issues arising at the bathing waters in Galway city in late May,”Irish Water said, noting that all data reported to date during the 2019 bathing water season in Galway city had been classified as “excellent” or “good”.

Galway sea swimmer Brian Coll, who is undertaking the Frances Thornton Memorial Galway Bay Swim in aid of Cancer Care West this weekend with his family, said he believes there needs to be more frequent water quality testing from April to October.

"The current situation where bathing water quality is tested every two weeks is insufficient, given that Salthill has one of the most active sea swimming communities in Ireland," he said.

"There needs to be weekly water testing and also more active environmental monitoring for visiting cruise ships. This is standard in other cruise ship destinations such as Alaska and Norway, where there are regular checks for any discharges of sewage and wastewater from the ships,” he said.

“We need to have confidence in the quality of our bathing water,” Mr Coll noted.

Sampling of bathing water only needs to take place once a month between May and September under the 2006 EU Bathing Water Directive, but the EPA says some local authorities test more frequently.

The directive is going to be reviewed, and frequency of testing may form part of this, but the review is at its early stages.

Galway City Council's Environment Department said that bathing water quality testing is carried out in accordance with a schedule agreed in advance with the EPA.

"For Blue Flag beaches this is every fortnight and for other beaches this is every week. Once the sample is taken it takes 48 hours for the test to react and as soon as these results are received they are published. Therefore they are published within 48 hours of the test but the test is carried out every two weeks for Salthill and Silverstrand. This is exactly the same frequency any other Blue Flag beach in the country," it said.

Galway City Council says it tests every second week. Results of bathing water quality testing on frequently used beaches around the coastline are posted on the EPA’s website, beaches.ie

Published in Coastal Notes

Dublin Bay

Dublin Bay on the east coast of Ireland stretches over seven kilometres, from Howth Head on its northern tip to Dalkey Island in the south. It's a place most Dubliners simply take for granted, and one of the capital's least visited places. But there's more going on out there than you'd imagine.

The biggest boating centre is at Dun Laoghaire Harbour on the Bay's south shore that is home to over 1,500 pleasure craft, four waterfront yacht clubs and Ireland's largest marina.

The bay is rather shallow with many sandbanks and rocky outcrops, and was notorious in the past for shipwrecks, especially when the wind was from the east. Until modern times, many ships and their passengers were lost along the treacherous coastline from Howth to Dun Laoghaire, less than a kilometre from shore.

The Bay is a C-shaped inlet of the Irish Sea and is about 10 kilometres wide along its north-south base, and 7 km in length to its apex at the centre of the city of Dublin; stretching from Howth Head in the north to Dalkey Point in the south. North Bull Island is situated in the northwest part of the bay, where one of two major inshore sandbanks lie, and features a 5 km long sandy beach, Dollymount Strand, fronting an internationally recognised wildfowl reserve. Many of the rivers of Dublin reach the Irish Sea at Dublin Bay: the River Liffey, with the River Dodder flow received less than 1 km inland, River Tolka, and various smaller rivers and streams.

Dublin Bay FAQs

There are approximately ten beaches and bathing spots around Dublin Bay: Dollymount Strand; Forty Foot Bathing Place; Half Moon bathing spot; Merrion Strand; Bull Wall; Sandycove Beach; Sandymount Strand; Seapoint; Shelley Banks; Sutton, Burrow Beach

There are slipways on the north side of Dublin Bay at Clontarf, Sutton and on the southside at Dun Laoghaire Harbour, and in Dalkey at Coliemore and Bulloch Harbours.

Dublin Bay is administered by a number of Government Departments, three local authorities and several statutory agencies. Dublin Port Company is in charge of navigation on the Bay.

Dublin Bay is approximately 70 sq kilometres or 7,000 hectares. The Bay is about 10 kilometres wide along its north-south base, and seven km in length east-west to its peak at the centre of the city of Dublin; stretching from Howth Head in the north to Dalkey Point in the south.

Dun Laoghaire Harbour on the southside of the Bay has an East and West Pier, each one kilometre long; this is one of the largest human-made harbours in the world. There also piers or walls at the entrance to the River Liffey at Dublin city known as the Great North and South Walls. Other harbours on the Bay include Bulloch Harbour and Coliemore Harbours both at Dalkey.

There are two marinas on Dublin Bay. Ireland's largest marina with over 800 berths is on the southern shore at Dun Laoghaire Harbour. The other is at Poolbeg Yacht and Boat Club on the River Liffey close to Dublin City.

Car and passenger Ferries operate from Dublin Port to the UK, Isle of Man and France. A passenger ferry operates from Dun Laoghaire Harbour to Howth as well as providing tourist voyages around the bay.

Dublin Bay has two Islands. Bull Island at Clontarf and Dalkey Island on the southern shore of the Bay.

The River Liffey flows through Dublin city and into the Bay. Its tributaries include the River Dodder, the River Poddle and the River Camac.

Dollymount, Burrow and Seapoint beaches

Approximately 1,500 boats from small dinghies to motorboats to ocean-going yachts. The vast majority, over 1,000, are moored at Dun Laoghaire Harbour which is Ireland's boating capital.

In 1981, UNESCO recognised the importance of Dublin Bay by designating North Bull Island as a Biosphere because of its rare and internationally important habitats and species of wildlife. To support sustainable development, UNESCO’s concept of a Biosphere has evolved to include not just areas of ecological value but also the areas around them and the communities that live and work within these areas. There have since been additional international and national designations, covering much of Dublin Bay, to ensure the protection of its water quality and biodiversity. To fulfil these broader management aims for the ecosystem, the Biosphere was expanded in 2015. The Biosphere now covers Dublin Bay, reflecting its significant environmental, economic, cultural and tourism importance, and extends to over 300km² to include the bay, the shore and nearby residential areas.

On the Southside at Dun Laoghaire, there is the National Yacht Club, Royal St. George Yacht Club, Royal Irish Yacht Club and Dun Laoghaire Motor Yacht Club as well as Dublin Bay Sailing Club. In the city centre, there is Poolbeg Yacht and Boat Club. On the Northside of Dublin, there is Clontarf Yacht and Boat Club and Sutton Dinghy Club. While not on Dublin Bay, Howth Yacht Club is the major north Dublin Sailing centre.

© Afloat 2020