Day out at Dalkey Island

I have been fortunate to have amazing friends in Dublin, so when one is getting ready to move, it inevitably means farewell do’s, planned by one friend or another. Typically, there would be some sort of final house party (last week), drinks at the pub (last Friday) and dinner amongst close friends (in a few days). Yesterday, a friend also planned for an activity day, which saw us all heading out to Dalkey Island.

Situated just off the coast not far from Dalkey (to the south of Dun Laoghaire), we took the chance that the weather would be decent and decided to go there for a picnic/BBQ. With everyone instructed to bring a little food, and someone in charge of buying the portable BBQ trays, we were pretty much all set.

Getting there was easy. Just grab a southbound DART and get off at Dalkey. From there, walk down Railway Road (I know, unimaginative name) and once coming to a main junction at the village, cross the road, go a little further down and turn right for Coliemore Road. Continue along the road for about 5 minutes and you’ll see the sign for ferry/boat to Dalkey Island by the road. It’s kinda hard to miss. But just in case anyway, here’s a Google Map as guide.

Dalkey Island

It costs €10 per person for return trip to the island, operated by a local guy. There’s no strict timetable and they will operate to/fro throughout the day, depending on demands. Even if there’s just a couple of you, he will take you over. But mind, this is during the summer months. In winter, I am not sure how things are fixed there. (I should have asked I guess)

The island is small enough to walk around, and there are a couple of ruins that you can check out, including a promontory fort. There is also a Mortello tower on the island. When walk around, just pay attention to the rabbit burrows (you wouldn’t want to twist your ankle or something) as well as for thorny plants but apart from that, this island is a little paradise away from the city.

The lovely view of Dublin Bay (especially on a sunny day), seal spotting (we spotted 4 of them), goat spotting (there is a herd of them), bird watching… these are what you can do here, nature wise. We noted a couple people camping there too, whereas we were there for picnic/BBQ. We were very lucky that we caught a break with the weather, and the sun shone for a couple of hours while we were there. Such relaxing setting, was it any wonder that we all had a great time? ;-)

One thing to remember, if you do go there, please do not leave your litter behind. Be responsible. The BBQ may be too hot to pack into bin bag immediately, but if you plan ahead, as soon as you finish cooking, pour a little water over the coal to help them cool quicker. By the time you finish eating and polish off all the food/desserts on offer, the portable kits will most likely be good to go too.

When you are ready to leave, all you need to do is to be at the steps where the local boat guy left you earlier. He should see you at some point and will come over to collect you. Whistle over for attention if you are able to and getting impatient waiting for him to see you from the other side.

This really is a great way to spend a day away from city madness, so why don’t you give it a go with a group of your friends?

2 Comments so far

  1. conorh on July 28th, 2008 @ 9:54 pm

    good post about a good day out – and Northsiders can have a similar jolly heading out to Ireland’s Eye..


  2. Lil (lilianl) on July 31st, 2008 @ 9:08 am

    thanks conor, and i should suggest to my friends to do the other outing some time then ;)

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