Ahead of the bank holiday weekends and long summer nights enjoy a run down of our Top Kitesurfing Spots in Ireland.
There are an abundance of top kitesurfing spots in Ireland and we've handpicked a few of Warren's favourites for some fun times on your kite. Although we’re (slightly) biased the island of Ireland offers one of the world’s most stunning coastlines and boasts a plethora of epic kitesurfing beaches! For those new to our shores, read on to find out why your next trip has to be to the Emerald Isle.
Ireland’s climate is heavily influenced by its proximity to the Atlantic Ocean. It has relatively mild winters and cool summers. The indented shape of the coastline and the differences in altitude introduce localised differences in temperature, cloud and precipitation.
Northern Ireland is one of the windier regions of the UK. The windiest areas are those on higher ground in the two most eastern counties of Antrim and Down. All good news for kitesurfers!
Top Kitesurfing Spots in Ireland - Cloughey Beach, Co. Down
Cloughey is a little seaside village situated on the east coast of the Ards Peninsula in County Down. It features a huge Clean Coast Award winning SSE facing beach. The venue has anything from butter flat to small / medium kickers. Excellent for all abilities.
Wind Directions - Excellent in an Easterly, butter flat at the eastern end, immediately downwind of a large stoney reef. Takes anything through to South really well.
Tide States - At high tide there's no beach. Only good from 1-and-a-half to 2 hours after high water.
Riding Types - Butter flat and kickers.
- Three caravan sites catering for caravans and camping.
- Car parking with toilets at the far end.
- Free car park just off the road, with a big grass area to pump up and change. Our Ride Engine Jedi Robe changing poncho is a handy accessory for car parks.
Hazards - There is a stoney reef right in the middle of the beach. It only starts to show at mid-tide, and is located opposed the tennis club building.
Top Kitesurfing Spots in Ireland - Tyrella Beach, Co. Down
Tyrella is a wide, flat, two kilometre long stretch of beach located within Dundrum Bay, Downpatrick in County Down. It has been awarded the prestigious Seaside Award annually since 1997, the Blue flag award in 2011 and the Green Coast Award since 2008. No need for a can of coke to kill the bugs when you’ve finished riding at this beach! Tyrella Beach is a popular kitesurfing spot and features small kickers to medium sized waves.
Wind Directions - Tyrella is a south facing beach and will work on anything from ESE to SW, anything beyond SW starts to get gusty as the Mourne Mountains sit directly to the WSW, only a few miles away.
Tide States - Tyrella can be flown at all tide states, but there isn't much beach left to launch/land at high tide.
Riding Types - Tyrella features small kickers to medium sized waves. Ideal for both freestylers and wave riders.
Local Information - Kitesurfing is allowed all year round, however during the summer months the beach has a lifeguard and swimming zone which you'll need to stay out of. The area features information signs at the beach entrance. It is also suited to all ability riders.
- Carpark (free off-season)
- Mobile snack van
- Lifeguard (in the summer months)
- You'll see wooden posts at either end of the beach. They're easily spotted.
- There is a reef which is revealed at low tide, at the far eastern end of the beach opposite the far posts.
- A small patch of stones locate in the middle of the beach and show at mid-tide.
Top Kitesurfing Spots In Ireland - Portstewart Strand, Co. Antrim
The North Coast of Ireland is home to Portstewart Strand - a traditional surfing town that’s home to an abundance of watersport enthusiasts (and Game of Thrones locations!). Featuring a large 7km beach with sand dunes, it takes a west wind (side shore) perfectly, and can be anything from medium to above overhead waves. Great spot, highly recommend!
Wind Directions - West can be a bit gusty, but produces the best wave conditions (side-shore). WNW-NW is absolutely ideal, but does take anything clockwise round to NNE.
Tide States - Can be kited at all tide states, although there's not much beach at high water, albeit sand dunes beyond this. Ideally arrive 1.5-2 hours after high water to park right on the beach and launch from there.
Riding Types - Wave and kickers.
Local Information - No restrictions apart from in the summer season. If the lifeguard is on duty, don't kite between the flags. Generally in Autumn, Winter and most of early Spring you've got the whole beach!
- Light refreshments available at visitor centre
- Beach shop in the new visitor centre
- Parking on the beach
Hazards - Wooden posts in rows down to the water, easily seen, room to kite between or beyond them. Lifeguards are on duty during the Summer season.
Top Kitesurfing Spots in Ireland - Magheroarty, Co. Donegal
Magheroarty beach is definitely one of the most popular beaches in the area with both windsurfers and kitesurfers. A curve of almost pink sand, the beach boasts views of the nearby islands of Inishbofin and Tory to one side and the headland of Horn Head to the other. The large crescent bay offers excellent wavesailing within easy reach of the main road. The wrap of the waves offers some flexibility in wind angle but the main wave breaks on a reef by the pier. Alternatively the beach breaks are accessible by the tracks at the rear of the sand dunes. The most popular location is about halfway up the beach where on bigger swells the wave can break over a rocky shoal.
Wind Directions - SW to W is port tack, cross-off and cleanest on the reef whereas SW going S works better on the beach break. NW is cross-on and offers good jumping. Look out for the best swell direction - W or NW swell.
Riding Types - Arguably the most popular wave sailing beach in the area. In westerly winds, excellent jumping. Watch out for a north west swell that provides excellent down the line wave riding waves.
Hazards - Watch out for currents on larger swells or large rocks on the upwind end of the reef.
Top Kitesurfing Spots in Ireland - Rossnowlagh, Co. Donegal
5 miles from Ballyshannon, Rossnowlagh Beach is a popular summer spot with kitesurfers and other water enthusiasts. If you want peace and quiet then park at the car park away from the hotel. Approximately 2 miles long with firm smooth sand, the beach is also ideal for kite buggying. However, during the summer a section of the beach is cordoned off. Also to note is that the tide comes in quite far and once it reaches a certain point it comes in quite quickly.
Wind Directions - The wind is a fairly reliable 10-30 knots. An onshore wind is westerly and is fairly common.
Riding Types - All abilities can enjoy it here from Beginner to Intermediate and Expert.
Local Information - not only is Rossnowlagh a top kitesurf destination but it is a long established surfing stronghold and also frequented by paddleboarders.
Facilities - There are a number of caravan parks and holiday homes nearby.
Hazards - The beach is accessible to cars and can get quite crowded so watch out for sunbathers, pedestrians and vehicles.
Getting There & Parking - Around the headland, is the Manor House beach, which is quieter and not accessible with cars. Access is through the Manor House caravan park. You can park your car in the Manor House car park.
Top Kitesurfing Spots in Ireland - Keel Beach, Achill Island, Co. Mayo
Located on along the Wild Atlantic Way, the two mile long Keel Strand is a popular kitesurf-spot year-round on Achill Island. The local trees have taken to lying completely horizontal in response to near constant gales, while the rest of the landscape has that windswept, rugged charm peculiar to this corner of the world. The launch is at the second car-park, by the campsite. The waves are smaller in the north of the bay, increasing in size further south. But you’ll have to contend with gusty conditions as the imposing Mount Minaun to the south creates dirty wind.
Wind Directions - South through to West.
Local Information - You definitely won't struggle to find good beer and whiskey around these parts! Achill Island’s Atlantic location makes it famous for its delicious seafood. Local farmers markets, restaurants and cafes are on hand to let you sample the local cuisine!
Facilities - Accommodation's no problem in Keel: campsites, B&Bs, holiday homes – this place has it all.
Top Kitesurfing Spots in Ireland - Inch Beach, Dingle Peninsula, Co. Munster
Inch is another wide, naturally beautiful sandy beach. Even when Brandon Bay is flat, S and SW swells find their way to this peninsula. Can also produce wonderful freeride conditions in summertime – and on sunny days a thermal northerly can get you going too.
Wind Direction - Mainly a SW wind.
Riding Types - The whole of Brandon Bay is ideal for new starters and for improvers to advance
Facilities - Right on the beach, there's a nice café and restaurant.