Lough  Gill

Lough Gill

Lough Gill was made famous by W.B. Yeats whose 'Lake Isle of Innisfree' inhabits one of its small corners. More recently, a popular Irish- American folk group, led by a Sligo troubadour, have taken the name. Unfortunately, on a cold and windy day in May, neither poetry nor music inspired us or made the lake more appealing. We accessed the water via a slipway which runs alongside the berthing place of the lake's leisure cruiser. It was stony underfoot and we bumped our way slowly into the cold, but fresh water. As we always say when swimming in lakes, be careful, watch for underwater rocks. No jumping or diving. Despite the little obstacle course, it was a refreshing swim with the soft and wavy water blowing away the cobwebs. We emerged revitalised and ready to write a poem or three. This must be a nice spot in the summer with Parkes castle alongside and a tour around the lake also on offer. View Larger Map       Directions : From Sligo take the N16 toward Enniskillen. Just outside the town branch off onto the R286 signposted for Dromohair and the lake. Follow this road until you come to the lake on your right hand side and continue on until you come to the castle with the car park beside it.       Copyright © ComputerAid, 2010 ~ 00353-86-8235349 ~ ]]> ~ All rights reserved. ]]> [...]

Lough Key

Lough Key

Our knowledge of places to swim in Roscommon is very limited so we were pleased to visit the attractive surroundings of Lough Key Forest Park. This is a very well maintained facility which also has a visitors centre, forest walk, and a marina. We got in from the slipway across from the marina and it brings you about waist height into the dark fresh water. Like all lakes you need to move carefully and watch out for underwater rocks. No jumping or diving. About 200 metres to the right of the slipway there is a small sandy area with shallow water. We didn't get in here but it looks like a place where children can splash in the summer. If you walk around the back of the marina and follow the lake shore path for a few hundred metres you come to few concrete jetties and we were told that people swim here during the summer. There are steps down into the water. We didn't venture in but again be careful. All in all, Lough Key is a lovely place for a visit. Apart from the swimming there is plenty to do and it is an ideal place for families to visit.  View Larger Map Directions From Dublin or Sligo follow the N4 and Lough Key is located between Carrick and Shannon and Boyle. The entrance is well signposted and you drive all the way through the forest to the car park beside the lake. Car parking is 4 euro. The lake side and environs are buggy and wheelchair accessible.   [...]

Belmullet Tidal Pool

Belmullet Tidal Pool

Belmullet Tidal Pool August 2014 Outdoor swimming pools are rare enough in Ireland but outdoor tidal pools are rarer still. So, the tidal pool in Belmullet is a rarity that is well worth a visit and a swim. Located on a coast road outs ide the town this pool is a great local facility. We visited at full tide so we don't know if the pool naturally fills and empties with the tide. When we were there only the ladders and surrounds were visible and they were certainly man made. The pool is about 20 metres long with shallow and deep ends. Access is by ladders at either end. We had a lovely swim in the fresh sea water, but as it was early morning we swam alone. Alongside the main pool there is a smaller pool which looks as if it is made for young children. There is also a lifeguard hut and a sign suggested the guard is on duty in the afternoons. Check locally for details. Alongside the lifeguard hut are 2 portaloos. This looks like a good place for people young and old to meet with a level concrete area providing space for people to sit and relax. There are steps down from the roadside which is manageable for buggies but not wheelchairs. All in all a very attractive facility and long may it continue. Directions. In the town of Belmullet drive straight down the main street until you reach the harbour. Turn right here and drive out this coast road for about 800 metres. Watch out for the lifeguard and the gap in the wall giving access to the pool.   [...]

Lough Ree, Lanesborough

Lough Ree, Lanesborough

Lough Ree, LanesboroughMay 2013Lanesborough is on the border between Longford and Roscommon and we think we swam on the Longford side. Neither county is renowned for swimming spots so we were glad to add this as a Longford location.We found a nice place to get in on the east side of the town's bridge, just before you cross the county boundary. Access to the water was from a concrete path which runs alongside the lake. It was a bit difficult so pick your spot carefully. The water was dark with good depth and lovely for swimming. As always with lakes be careful as you can't see what is underneath the surface. No jumping or diving. [...]

Glencar Lough

Glencar Lough

Glencar Lough May 2013 The weather was awful, the water choppy and getting in for our swim was painful. Still, needs must and we stumbled into the blustery waters of Glencar. After driving for what seemed like ages only a swim would restore us. We got in down a slip way at the end of the lake as you come from Sligo. We had to manoeuvre across some sharp stones and ease our way into the dark water. Like all lakes you need to move slowly and carefully. No jumping or diving. When we got into it the water was soft and refreshing. As we emerged we were, of course, glad we had made the effort. We don't know if people swim there in the summer; needless to say, on a wet day in May we swam alone. We aren't sure if the lake is in Sligo or Leitrim, a bit of both we think. Anyway , we are giving it to Leitrim as we have far more swimming places in Sligo. Just beyond the lake is the impressive Glencar waterfall which is well worth a visit and that is definitely in Leitrim.  View Larger Map Directions: From Sligo take the N15 toward Donegal. Before Drumcliff watch out for the right turn signposted for the waterfall. Follow the not very good signposting along meandering roads and, hopefully, you will come to the lake on your right. Drive toward the end of the lake and you will come to a small tarmacadam car park with the slip way beside it.   [...]

Mannin Bay

Mannin Bay

Mannin Bay June 2010 This was our first time to visit Mannin Bay and, while it may be hard to find, it is absolutely worth the effort. Mannin is a beautiful, quiet beach with lovely clear water, plenty of room and fantastic views across to the Twelve Bens. The beach has various inlets and while it can be windy there are rocks for shelter. It's not too steep as you enter and when we were there we swam out to a lone yacht anchored near the shore. Lucky them. It's always nice to discover new places and Mannin is highly recommended Directions  View Larger Map You travel on the R341 from Clifden and after the coral strand you watch out for a right hand turn which is signposted for the Mannin Bay Hotel. You go along this twisty road until you come to a fork - you go to the right and then watch out for a gate on your right hand side with space for a few cars to pull in. The gate has a sign which says ' Sheep Grazing' . Through this gate there is a worn track which leads you to the beach. If you have a dog it must be on a lead . It's buggy accessible with an effort, but not wheelchairs. Ordnance Survey Discovery Series Map No. 44   [...]

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