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Where to surf in Northern Ireland

The best waves to surf can be found on the north coast of Co. Antrim and Co. Derry~Londonderry and in particular stretches of water off the coast of Portrush, Portstewart and Portballintrae.

To find out about conditions on the day, call the Surf Report line: 09111 680090

Map of Northern Ireland

Benone Strand, Magilligan

Grid Reference: C875410

Benone Strand, otherwise known as Magiligan Strand is popular with surfers from Limavady and Derry.

Tucked in at the east end of Benone, lies a fairly consistent right hand bank in front of the friendly Downhill Hostel. This wave can carry for over 150m plus, has steep walls and is sheltered from strong S/SW winds due to its cliffed backdrop. The wave is very uncrowded and over the years many perfect waves have gone unridden here.

Waves get progressively bigger the further East you go from Magilligan Point. If you don't find an empty peak along this beach then something is wrong. At low tide the beach is very popular with kitesurfers, kite buggys and sand yachts etc. West of the Benone entrance behind the sand dunes lies a British Army shooting range, so check for access restrictions. No car parking fees. Waves here are more rolling and less violent than Portrush or Portballintrae, ideal for beginners and longboarders.

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Grid Reference: C776362

Many left and right hand peaks, picks up a lot of swell; challenging when big, for experienced surfers. Nice righthander at the barmouth but beware of rip current.


Grid Reference: C923420

One of the top surf spots in Northern Ireland, but this is ONLY suitable for very experienced surfers. It has notoriously strong rips. It is not suitable for swimming. There are really two breaks. One in the rivermouth, which suits bodyboarders (short, hollow), and one down the beach, which can give longs rides.

Portrush East Strand

Grid Reference: C849400

Mainly suited to experienced surfers - its La Graviere with colder water! It has been said that it is the best beach break in Ireland!

Drive through the one way sytem in Portrush, past the Arcadia and East Strand is the turn off on the left.

Portrush West Strand

Grid Reference: C849400

One of the most surfed beaches in Northern Ireland, especially for beginners but can get a little busy at weekends in summer. This is where most of the surf schools do their beginner surf lessons.

It also has a reef known as 'Blackrocks' for the more experieced who want more of a challenge.

White Rocks

Grid Reference: C875410

Great surfing beach for beginners to intermediates. Whiterocks beach has multiple lefts and rights on the sandbars at the rocky outcrops at the northern end of the beach. This beach attracts a fairly large swell window which is quite consistent.

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