All at sea: throw yourself into these water activities

 

SMALL PRINT:LANDLUBBERS: this one isn’t for you. Often we forget how many things there are to do in the summer months that don’t involve staying shoreside. Instead of keeping dry over the next while, why not take to the sea in ways that don’t just involve dipping your toe in the water. Here are some inventive ways of hitting the sea this summer.

Urban fishingThere’s no better way to spend a sunny Sunday afternoon than trying to lure mackerel into a boat. In Bullock Harbor in Dalkey, Co Dublin, €20 will hire a boat for four people for an hour, with an extra €8 to hire a rod for the afternoon. Mackerel and mullet are plentiful, so not only do you get to amuse yourself for the afternoon, you also get your dinner.

KitesurfingFor some (namely John Kerry after that infamous kitesurfing election campaign photo), taking a board and a sail into the water mightn’t be the best idea, but there’s possibly no more invigorating way to spend a day at the beach. Kitesurfing.ie offers you all the updates and details of classes and tournaments you’ll need. And Lsdkiteboarding.com run lessons and adventure weekends in counties Leitrim, Sligo and Donegal.

Scuba-divingYou could be forgiven for thinking that Ireland – with its cold seas – is a poor spot for scuba-diving. The reality is different; our underwater life is teeming. More adventurous divers can check out Irishwrecksonline.net to survey 10,000 shipwrecks in Irish waters, including a U-Boat and a first World War battleship as potential dive sites.

Stand-up paddle boardingIt’s remarkable how your perception of a place can change when you view it from a different angle. Like cycling around a city, or circling a place from the air, stand-up paddle boarding allows you to calmly explore your surroundings. It takes a fair bit of skill and a whole lot of balance, but the activity seems to be growing in popularity on Irish seas. Go to Bigsurf.ie to check out equipment.

Moonlight kayakingH20 Sea Kayaking, based in Ballinspittle near Kinsale, offers moonlight excursions to the Old Head and Oysterhaven Bay in west Cork, which goes to show that your sea fun doesn’t have to end when the sun goes down. With all of these activities, safety is paramount, so do your research on the Irish Water Safety website (iws.ie) before heading out to the open sea.