Inishowen Head, with its panoramic views of the Inishowen Peninsula to the north-west and the north Derry coastline to the east, is the outermost tip of Lough Foyle’s western shore. Acrobatic displays by its many seabirds, soaring and diving between sea and cliffs, enhance the drama of this bracing rugged coastline.
The Head lies a short walk from Shroove village. Its sheer, 90-metre-high cliffs dominate the rocky islets and promontories below, and provide a perfect habitat for several sea bird colonies, including guillemot, razorbill, fulmar, kittiwake, storm petrel, shag, cormorant and gulls.
Shags and kittiwakes cling to the rock faces. Fulmars, black-backed gulls and gannets soar gracefully in the up-draught. Ravens circle overhead performing ‘victory rolls’ in the gusting winds.
It’s worth taking a short walk northwards to where the Head Road flattens and provides wonderful views of seabirds nesting on ledges and diving for fish. On a good day, you might catch a glimpse of a pair of peregrines or an elaborate aerial breeding display by a pair of magnificent kestrels. Keep an eye out, too, for choughs, stonechats and reed buntings.
Shorebirds including curlews and oystercatchers populate the coastline around Portknocker south of Inishowen Head, while flocks of cormorants can be watched gliding over the waves, to and from their nesting places.