Lough Foyle, one of Ireland’s largest Atlantic inlets, is bounded by the Inishowen hills to the west and Binevenagh’s cliffs to the east. It’s testament to the area’s standing as a sailing destination that Derry~Londonderry has hosted the Clipper Round the World Yacht Race fleet on several occasions.
Sailors enter the Lough between Greencastle and Magilligan Martello Towers, cruise along the coast past Moville, and meet the River Foyle at Culmore Point. Proceeding to historic Derry~Londonderry, they pass the site of the German Navy’s U-Boat fleet surrender after World War II.
Foyle Marina offers secure deep-water pontoons within walking distance of Derry city centre. Stroll along the city’s 400-year-old walls and sample its historical and cultural attractions. Visit the Tower Museum to learn about Spanish Armada wrecks, or enjoy riverside walks in one of the city’s country parks.
Smaller craft cruising upstream can experience 15 miles of tidal river, offering scenic views of the Sperrin Mountains and the hills of Donegal.
Loughs Agency has produced a trail guide which provides boat users with information on various points of interest around the Foyle. This includes charts on the access and egress that are suitable for small boats.
Like Lough Foyle, Carlingford is in a landscape designated as an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. The fjord-like Lough lies between the Mourne and Cooley Mountains.
Carlingford village, with its medieval layout and Norman castle ruins, is home to a yacht club and sailing club, and buzzes with sailing activity. Berths are available at the Carlingford Marina just outside the village close to the stunning Great Eastern Greenway walking and cycling trail.
From the Lough’s inner section, a ship canal traces a scenic passage between the mountains to the Albert Basin quays in Newry city. Rushing tidal waters at the Lough’s mouth make that stretch suitable only for experienced sailors.
Sailors can relax in picturesque coastal resorts like Rostrevor, Warrenpoint, Omeath, and Carlingford.
Loughs Agency has produced a trail guide which provides boat users with information on various points of interest around Carlingford. This includes charts on the access and egress that are suitable for small boats.