Blasket Island Tours


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Blasket Island Tours

The Great Blasket Island remains uninhabited today, but visitors can travel by ferry over to this remote and wildly beautiful place and spend several hours or all day marvelling at its natural beauty and what remains of years of the abandoned houses and village.

Ferries depart from Dunquin Pier, Ventry Pier and from Dingle daily. Passengers are transferred to a RIB (rigid-inflatable boat) once the ferry gets close to the island, as there are no adequate landing facilities for a larger vessel

There are also Eco and Marine Life Blasket Island tours which depart from Dunquin Pier on the Slea Head peninsula, Ventry Pier or Dingle Harbour each day and take you on a tour around the coast of the Blasket Islands where you may see Seals, Dolphins, Basking sharks and a variety of birds.
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image of house on Blasket Island

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In the 1920s and 1930s the Blasket Island writers produced books which are deemed classics in the world of literature. They wrote of Island people living on the very edge of Europe, and brought to life the topography, life and times of their Island. They wrote all of their stories in the Irish language.

The inhabitants were evacuated by the government to the mainland on 17 November 1953 because of the declining population and harsh nature of life on the island.

The Blasket Centre / Ionad an Bhlascaoid Mhóir in Dún Chaoin celebrates the story of the Blasket Islanders, the unique literary achievements of the island writers and their native language, culture and tradition.

Blasket Islands boat tours Dingle Peninsula

  • Dingle Harbour

    52.1389,-10.2762

  • Ventry Pier

    52.1318,-10.3596

  • Dunquin Pier

    52.1244,-10.4604

Providers

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Boat Tours

Boat Tours on the Dingle Peninsula

While staying on the Dingle Peninsula why not take a boat trip and experience the maritime history, marine life and breathtaking scenery of our coastal waters. Whether you want to spot puffins and birds, seals and whales, sea caves and islands or meet Fungi our resident bottlenose dolphin, there are boat tours to suit all your needs available from Dingle, Ventry, Dunquin and Ballydavid piers.

Experience nature up close by sitting back and enjoying the scenery on a leisurely cruise, strap yourself in for a thrilling Sea Safari on a rib or put some energy in and paddle your own sea kayak. Visit the Blasket Islands, go whale watching, dolphin watching or bird watching, learn about our marine environment or simply admire the dramatic coastline. Some boat tours will have a Marine Biologist or Wildlife Tour Guide on board.  Most operators offer standard tours and can also be chartered for groups or special interests.

eco tours boat

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There are a huge variety of boat tours available on the peninsula leaving from Dingle harbour, Ventry pier, Ballydavid pier and Maharees. Ferries to the Blasket Islands depart from Dunquin pier and Dingle.
Boat trips are weather dependent and for safety reasons some smaller boats don't operate during the winter months. Fungi boat trips and Eco Tours run all year in Dingle Harbour.

Boat tours on the Dingle Peninsula

  • Brandon Bay

    52.2740,-10.0408

  • Dingle Marina

    52.1388,-10.2770

  • Dingle Harbour

    52.1382,-10.2743

  • Ventry Pier

    52.1315,-10.3601

  • Ballydavid Pier

    52.2176,-10.3574

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Fungi Dolphin Tours

Fungie Dolphin Tours

Meet Dingle’s most famous resident Fungie! A male common bottlenose dolphin, first seen in Dingle harbour in 1983, he has been living in the bay since then. The best way to see Fungie for yourself is to take one of our boat tours and watch him splash about in the sea. There are boat trips all year round to see this wonderful mammal. During the summer months there are other ways to see Fungie, including swimming, kayaking, diving, SUP boarding and more.

 

Fungie is unique. His interactions with humans and length of stay in one place, is by far the longest of any dolphin or other cetacean on record, anywhere in the world. Most dolphins live in a social group, for Fungi his family pod has become the residents and visitors of the Dingle Peninsula, Fungie loves human company, and can often be seen interacting playfully with swimmers, surfers, kayakers and divers in the water. There have not been any recorded cases of Fungie being aggressive towards humans, but he is still a wild mammal, and should be treated with caution and care.

Fungi the Dingle Dolphin

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ABOUT FUNGIE

Fungie measures about 3.7m (12ft) in length and must weigh over 300kg. He is a fully grown male common bottlenose dolphin, (Tursiops Truncatus), part of a diverse group of aquatic mammals. Dolphins eat fish, of course. Fungie probably needs about 30kg a day (as dolphins eat approximately 6% pf their body weight a day!!).  The tidal waters of Dingle Bay mean both fishermen and birds find it hard to fish in the bay, so Fungie, with his state-of-the-art dolphin sonar and lightning speed, can feed safely and without rivals. He eats a variety of fish, squid and sometimes small crustaceans. Bottlenose dolphins have a life span of about 35 - 40 years in the wild, so we hope Fungie will break another world record of oldest dolphin!

FUNGIE WORLD RECORD

* Fungie entered The Guinness Book of world records in 2010 for being the most loyal and longest staying resident wild Dolphin to any one area anywhere in the world.

Fungie the Dingle Dolphin

Fungi lives at the mouth of Dingle Harbour and boat trips run from Dingle Marina and Pier.
  • Brandon Bay

    52.2740,-10.0408

  • Dingle Fungi Trips

    52.1393,-10.2760

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Marine Wildlife Tours

Marine Wildlife Tours on the Dingle Peninsula

The coastline of the Dingle Peninsula is teeming with marine wildlife; which includes fish, mammals,birds, plants and organisms. We have marine wildlife that live here all year wound, such as seals, gannets, our famous dolphin, Fungi, and we have annual visitors who come from as far afield as Brazil, Uruguay and Canada, to breed and feed in our temporate summer waters.The waters off the Blasket Islands are rich feeding grounds for migrating whales and dolphins. The Dingle Peninsula has become a paradise for wildlife enthusiasts, not just because of the diverse range of wildlife we have, but for the ease of access. Wetlands and reedbeds, harbours and estuaries, sand dunes and coastal cliffs, each have their own special ecosystems and habitants.

Marine and Eco Wildlife boat tours, which sail from different parts of the peninsula are a great way to meet some of the creatures that live in the salt water of the ocean or along our coastline.

Birdlife on the Dingle Peninsula

The Dingle Peninsula is one of the best birdwatching areas in Ireland, particularly famous for its seabird colonies. On a Marine Tour you can view the breathtaking cliffs below the Slea Head Drive, the Blasket Islands, the towering Cathedral Rocks of Inis na Bro, Inisvickalaun, An Tearaght, the Maherees, where tens of thousands of migrating seabirds nest during the summer months, amongst them puffins, Manx Shearwaters, Storm Petrels, Terns and Auks. Diving gannets, come from their 25000 pair strong colony on the Skellig Islands, to fish-rich feeding grounds off our coast.  The cliffs fringing the peninsula also hold good numbers of Chough and Peregrine Falcon. Spring and Summer are great months to spot wild birds on the Peninsula, but every season brings excitment with new wildlife arriving. Each autumn birdwatchers are scouring the estuaries and bays for rare waders, and wildfowl blown across the Atlantic in storms, such as Buff-breasted Sandpipers, Lesser Yellowlegs or Pectoral Sandpipers among the hordes of other migrating waders. Winter sees the arrival of Brent Geese from Canada and winter gulls.

Marine Wildlife and Eco Tours on the Dingle Peninsula

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Sailing


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Sailing on the Dingle Peninsula

"Dingle Bay is a superb sailing area with many sheltered anchorages, magnificent scenery and interesting islands"

Dingle Peninsula coastline is spectacular from the sea with its towering cliffs and dramatic seascape. At the southern entrance to Dingle Bay is The Skellig Rock, site of an ancient monastic settlement, while the Blasket Islands to the north are famous for their beauty and their literature. The remote Dingle Peninsula is known as a bastion of Irish culture and language with traditional Irish music to be heard in many of the bars and the Irish language still spoken in the Gaeltacht or Irish speaking area west of Dingle town. The whole area is exciting to explore by sea and the Dingle Peninsula coastline forms part of the Cool Route, described in the International Yachting Press as the World’s Most Adventurous Cruising Ground.

On the northern shore of Dingle Bay, Dingle Harbour offers shelter from all weather and is the base for an active fishing fleet. As a sailing destination Dingle Harbour has hosted international sailing Race La Solitaire du Figaro and the biannual Dun Laoghaire to Dingle D2D, a 320 mile race down the east and south coast of Ireland. Dingle Harbour is also a safe place for dinghy sailing and the Marina is home to Dingle Sailing Club who offer ISA approved dinghy sailing courses for adults and children.

Boats at Dingle Marina

Dingle Marina

Dingle is Ireland's most westerly marina, lying at the heart of the sheltered Dingle Harbour and is easily reached both day and night via a well buoyed approach channel. The marina is located inside the western breakwater with a depth in excess of 5 metres.

The marina is close to the centre of the very popular Dingle town with a choice of excellent restaurants, shops,bars and cafes within five minutes walk. For more information see www.dinglemarina.ie

  • Type of Marina: Walcon ; 100 berths including 20 visitor berths.
  • Power Supply: 220volt AC
  • Fuel: Diesel at marina; petrol at local stations
  • Water: On tap at marina
  • Showers: Availalbe at marina centre
  • Laundry: Available at marina centre

The Dingle Peninsula coastline forms part of THE COOL ROUTE Project


Ranked as the Most Adventurous Cruising Route in the World it stretches from Cork Ireland to Tromso, in Western Norway.


Where to sail on the Dingle Peninsula

Dingle Marina

52.1375,-10.2786

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Surfing


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Surfing on the Dingle Peninsula
Surfing along the Dingle Peninsula….. is one of the greatest surfing experiences... with waves from the North Atlantic set against the beautiful backdrop of Irish scenery

Endless empty beaches, bordered by dramatic mountains and world class surf breaks along miles of golden sands, make Dingle Peninsula a thrilling destination for both experienced and novice surfers, ensuring a trip you won’t forget.

For the experienced surfer nothing quite beats the exhilaration of pitting mind and body against the beauty and unpredictability of the ocean, and with so many varied and unpopulated surf locations to choose from the Dingle Peninsula is pure surfing heaven. You don't even need to transport your gear as equipment such as boards and suits can be hired locally by the hour or the day.  

For the beginner or novice one of the most exciting things you can do on the Dingle Peninsula is take a surf lesson and gain some new skills while safely enjoying our fantastic scenic coastline. With a variety of surf breaks to choose from, professional instructors and very few people in the water, there is a lot of space and comfort for beginners. So, go on out there and catch that wave!

Group of surfers with their boards - Dingle Surf School

Surf Lessons and Summer Camps

There are surf lessons available on both the north and south coast of the Dingle Peninsula catering for all ages and all abilities.Surf camps for children from age 8 - 18 are also available during holiday periods and are very popular. All equipment such as wetsuits and boards are provided and group and family packages are available.

Having a north and south coast and changeable weather patterns there will often be good weather and better surf on one side of the Dingle Peninsula. For best advice talk to local activity providers who will guide you.

Where to Surf on the Dingle Peninsula

Brandon Bay, the Maharees, Kilcummin and Castlgregory are the surfing centres on the north shore of the Dingle Peninsula. Inch beach is the main surfing centre on the south shore and there is a surf school in Dingle town which will bus surfers to the most suitable beach depending on weather and tides.
  • Brandon Bay

    52.2740,-10.0408

  • Inch Beach

    52.1242,-9.9561

  • Dingle Surf School

    52.1402,-10.2715

Surfing - Activity Providers

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Swimming

Swimming on the Dingle Peninsula

The Dingle Peninsula boasts some of the most beautiful beaches and some of the warmest water temperatures in Ireland. With lowest average water temperatures in winter of 9°C swimming is possible all year round, but not for the faint-hearted. With a wetsuit you can swim every day! During the summer, the sea water temperature rises steadily to average highs of 15°C in July August and September. Sea swimming is a favourite with Irish families, and you will often see children playing in the sea for hours on end. There are many pristine beaches and beautiful inlets where you can swim safely. Check out our map, for more information about beaches, blue flag beaches, lifeguards and facilities such as toilets. During the summer months Irish Water Safety run a series of swimming and lifeguard classes in different locations around the peninsula. Check out their website for UpToDate listings.  

Water Safety

To stay safe at the beach, always remember F.L.A.G.S. F - Find the red and yellow flags and swim between them.Always swim where there is a lifeguard on patrol, and stay inside the area marked by the red and yellow flags. Never swim where a sign says not to, or when the red flag is flying. L - Look at the safety signs.Always read and obey the safety signs - they will help you to avoid potential dangers on the beach, and to identify the safest areas for swimming. A - Ask a lifeguard for advice.If in doubt, it's always best to play it safe and ask the experts. G - Get a friend to swim with you.Make sure there are other people around, because you never know when help might be needed.

Blueflag Beaches on the Dingle Peninsula

Inch, Ventry and Magherabeg are proud holders of The Blue Flag - one of the world's most recognised eco-labels. Beaches and marinas that achieve this accolade must comply with a specific set of criteria relating to water quality, information provision, environmental education, safety and beach management.

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Windsurfing

Windsurfing on the Dingle Peninsula

Voted Number 1 Windsurfing destination in the World - "Sunday Times"

Windsurfing is a versatile water sport as it can be done either in waves or on flat water. It is a surface water sport that combines the exciting elements of both surfing and sailing. Although it might be considered a minimalistic version of a sailboat, a windsurfer offers experiences that are outside the scope of any other sailing craft design. Windsurfers can perform jumps, inverted loops, spinning manoeuvres, and other “freestyle” moves that cannot be matched by any sailboat.

The Dingle Peninsula is an ideal country for windsurfing as it has plenty of lakes, inlets, salt marshes and safe harbours in which to practice. Ireland's climate is also complimentary to windsurfing as it is influenced by the warm waters of the Gulf Stream and is in the path of the prevailing south-westerly winds from the Atlantic Ocean. The combination of these conditions serves to make Ireland the perfect location for windsurfing.

More Info

Jamie Knox on the Maharees can get you all the low down about where to sail and the best conditions for certain spots. Visit: jamieknox.com

Where to windsurf on the Dingle Peninsula

Brandon Bay and Castlegregory are the places to head for windsurfing on the Dingle Peninsula. The area is legendary amongst windsurfers attracting some of the best sailors in the world.

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More Water Activities...

Our Stories

DINGLE PENINSULA TOURISM ALLIANCE – PROMOTING THE DINGLE PENINSULA TOGETHER

Comhaontas Turasóireachta Chorca Dhuibhne – Ag cur Corca Dhuibhne chun cinn le chéile

Do come and stay!
We are very happy to help guide you to your idyllic holiday or short break on the Dingle Peninsula. Dingle Peninsula Tourism Alliance, a marketing co-operative owned and managed by its members across the peninsula, have produced this website to provide you, our visitors with the most up to date information you need to plan and enjoy your visit.

If you cannot find the information you need, or have a question you would like answered, please feel free to contact us.

Comhaontas Turasóireachta Chorca Dhuibhne
Aonad 4, Páirc Gnó na Coille, Daingean Uí Chúis, Contae Chiarraí, Éire


Dingle Peninsula Tourism Alliance
Office 4, The Wood Business Park, Dingle, Co. Kerry, Ireland