5 best places to swim in Ireland
5 best places to swim in Ireland

Date: Thursday 7th July 2016

Maureen McCoy and Paul McCambridge have recently self-published Wild Swimming: Ireland. Here's they pick five of their favourite Irish swims

This island nation is full of contradictions, the Irish; fiercely tribal yet openly welcoming. They will defend their homes with fervour, yet offer you a bed for the night. They will tell you there is nowhere you can get a better Guinness then regale you for hours about a wee bar away down in the West / South where you’ll not find a better pint… and swimming…well wherever you meet them is the best place, but you should also go to… and be sure not to miss… and so your journey around Ireland starts… “Come on in will ye... sure the craic is mighty!”


1. Howth, County Dublin

Youths scramble up barnacle encrusted rocks, socks the only protection for delicate feet…

 2. Ballydowane, County Waterford

Lose yourself in this other-worldly place, great jagged sea stacks jut out of the water like some mythical sea creature. 

 3. Tra Sailin –(Salty Beach) Galway

Perfect for wild camping and an early morning skinny dip.


 4. Silver Strand and Malin beg Harbour, Donegal

This stunning horseshoe shaped strand is as close to the perfect beach as you could ever hope to find.


 5. Carrick-a-rede

One of the most dramatic swims in Ireland, a 1 kilometre trip across to Carrick-a-Rede Island and under the rope bridge.

Photos: © Paul McCambridge