Official tourism website for Mourne Mountains and Ring of Gullion

Strangford Lough

Cuan Narrows, Strangford, Downpatrick, County Down, BT30 7BU
Brent Geese flying over Strangford Lough with Mournes on horizon

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Strangford Lough  is located in an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty and is almost fully enclosed by land. It is the largest sea water inlet in Ireland and the United Kingdom and an important habitat for wildlife.  A regular car ferry links the picturesque towns of Strangford and Portaferry.  Strangford Lough is a significant asset in the Aspiring UNESCO global Geopark.   The Lough was formed at the end of the last ice age. Strangford Lough is Northern Ireland's first Marine Conservation Zone and is a special area of conservation for wildlife. Strangford Lough is a key destination for winter migration for many wading and sea birds.  The lough is home to common seals, basking sharks and brent geese.  

Can you Swim in Strangford Lough?

Kilclief beach is siutated on Strangford Lough.  Wild swimmers are treated to incredible views of the Isle of Man on the horizon.

Are there dolphins in Strangford Lough?

Short beaked common dolpins have been found in Strangford Lough.

How long does it take to drve around Strangford Lough?

It takes approximately one and a half hours to travel around the lough.

Where can I see seals in Strangford Lough?

Pull in at Killard National Nature Reserve.  There is an information panel and viewing area.

How long is the Ferry from Strangford to Portaferry?

The ferry crossing takes around 10 minutes and leaves on the hour and half hour from Strangford from 7.30am weekdays, 8.00am Saturdays and 9.30am Sundays.  Last sailing is 10.30pm weekdays, 11.00pm Saturdays and 10.30pm Sundays.  Enjoy the stunning scenery of this Marine Nature Reserve and see if you can spot the seals.

Can you Kayak on Strangford Lough?

Strangford Lough is a favourite location for canoeing, kayaking and watersports.  Check out Clearsky Adventure Centre for lots of family fun activities.



  • Picnic Area

Establishment Features

  • Accommodation nearby
  • Family Fun

Parking & Transport

  • Car parking

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Tel 033 0137 4046

Map & Directions

What's Nearby

  1. The castle dates probably from around the 15th century, but the early history is unknown.…

    0.95 miles away
  2. Discover a place of contrasts and creativity at Castle Ward, an eccentric 18th century…

    1.13 miles away
  3. Cloghy Rocks is a wonderful location as a number of seals are often spotted here. There…

    1.62 miles away
  1. Kilclief Castle was built between 1413 and 1441, reputedly by John Sely, bishop of Down.…

    2.5 miles away
  2. Restored ruins of a sixth century church of St. Tassach, said to have given the last…

    3.29 miles away
  3. Situated on the shores of Strangford Lough in an area of outstanding natural…

    5.02 miles away
  4. The imposing Strangford Stone is the tallest megalith in the British Isles.  It was…

    5.02 miles away
  5. Two miles outside Downpatrick is the replica of St Patrick's first church in Ireland.…

    5.44 miles away
  6. Struell Wells was built around a stream flowing through a secluded valley. It was a…

    5.98 miles away
  7. The Reserve provides a relaxing natural retreat and offers visitors tranquil riverside…

    6.08 miles away
  8. Built 1954 to the designs of S. McIlveen of Ferguson and McIlveen, Belfast. This is a…

    7.08 miles away
  9. Located in the heart of Downpatrick, Down Arts Centre is the operational base for the…

    7.17 miles away
  10. The foundation stone of this church was laid by Bishop Dorrian in 1886.

    7.18 miles away
  11. Down County Museum is located in the old county Gaol of Down. It houses fascinating…

    7.32 miles away
  12. The Saint Patrick Centre is the only permanent exhibition in the World about Ireland’s…

    7.34 miles away
  13. Down Cathedral, a Cathedral of the Church of Ireland with magnificent stain glass…

    7.43 miles away
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Map & Directions

Road Directions

From Belfast follow the A24 to Carryduff.  From Carryduff follow A7 toward Downpatrick.  Turn left onto Finnebrogue Road, Right towards Downpatrick and left onto Quoile Road and left onto A25 Strangford Road into Strangford Village

From Dublin follow the M1 to Newry Continue to A1 and follow to Dromore.  Follow B7 to Ballynahinch.  At roundabout follow A24.  Turn left onto Downpatrick Road B2.  Turn Right onto Belfast Road A7 and then left onto Finnebrogue Road.  Turn Right onto A22.  Turn left onto Quoile Road.  Turn left onto Strangford Road A25 follow A25 to Strangford Villlage

Enjoy the scenic route?  Follow the Mourne Coastal Route from Belfast to Portaferry and then accross in the Ferry to Strangford Village.

From Dublin Follow the Mourne Coastal Route from Newry to Strangford.


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