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Aran Islands

Diving DarekGuziuk Comments01 Mar, 2017

“ONE OF THE WORLD’S TOP ISLAND DESTINATIONS That this feeling, this authenticity, has survived the modern world is nothing short of miraculous” - National Geographic

Inis Mor

Inis Mor Island

Inis Mór is the largest of the Aran Islands and is home to Dun Aonghasa.


 

Inis Meain

Inis Meain Island

Inis Meain Island is where you’ll find a more authentic escape from the modern world and has a population of 200 people.


Inis Oirr

Inis Oirr Island

Inis Oirr (Inisheer) is the smallest of the islands is characterized by its distinctive charm.


The Ocean around the Aran Islands represent some of the most spectacular and beautiful underwater places to be found anywhere in Ireland. 
Most Popular Dive Sites around Arans:

The Canyon (Aran Island)

Description: This site lies between the Brannock Rock and the North Light. The area between these two islands is flat limestone about 9m deep. Opposite the landing stage for the lighthouse there is a vertical canyon about 30–45m wide, 400m long. As this is a limestone area, the walls of the canyon are fissured and abound with all sorts of fish life. Visibility will frequently permit divers on one side to see divers on the other side of the canyon. There is a slight current, the site is partially exposed. 

  • Boat journey: 50 min.
  • Depth range: 9-33 m
  • What to see: All sorts of fish life

Poll Na bPeist (Aran Island)

Description: This site is on the Atlantic side of Inismore about 1.6km south of Dun Aengus, the famous cliff top fort on the west side of the island and consists of a rectangular opening in the flat foreshore, it looks like a man made swimming pool. Entry is through a wide underground cavern about 25m long, depth in the pool is about 15m. Outside the pool the bottom is strewn with huge boulders and slopes away to 45m deep after about 300m. This site is located under wall, which is perched on top of vertical cliff 90m high. 

  • Boat journey: 50 min.
  • Depth range: 11-45 m
  • What to see: All sorts of fish life

Brannock (Aran Island)

Description: This site is made of a series of steps starting at 8m at the shore reaching 32m after 60m out. The steps are approx. 3m high, and are fissured and undercut, perfect abodes for various life forms. This is the most sheltered site and is exposed only to north to east winds, winds up to Force 4 are no problem, there is no current and it is protected from the Atlantic swell. 

  • Boat journey: 50 min.
  • Depth range: 8-32 m
  • What to see: various life forms

Glassan Rock (Aran Island)

Description: There is a cave above the water. The vertical rock face has an overhanging ledge 3–4m deep cut into it at a depth of about 12m. This runs around the tip of the island. The ledge narrows towards the back and provides a perfect home to aquatic life. Swim around the tip of the island to where a spectacular collection of giant boulders carpeted in dead mans fingers are propped up against the side of the island. It is possible to swim beneath some of these, stopping to look out at shoals of pollack swimming by. 

  • Boat journey: 40 min.
  • Depth range: 12-34 m
  • What to see: Conger Eel, Lobster, Wrasse, Pollock, Crayfish, various life forms

The Puffing Holes (Aran Island)

Description: This dive is an underwater chasm in the limestone which extends for at least 120 m and is closed at one end. Although they cannot be seen from underwater, it is believed that the cave eventually leads to the puffing holes which are visible high on the shore above. Divers should not venture more than 10 or 15 m into the entrance without advanced training and planning and using appropriate cave diving techniques. Under the right conditions this dive is exhilarating and unrivalled, but is definitely not one for the faint hearted. 

  • Boat journey: 40 min.
  • Depth range: 5-19 m
  • What to see: various life forms

Farvey Point (Aran Island)

Description: A dive site stretching for about 2.5km long. There are ledges at 10m, 20m, and 30m running parallel to the shore, and the shallow ledges are very suitable for trainees. As one moves out into deeper water, the area is covered in great boulders with excellent colour and fish life. Currents are 1.5 knots at full flow. 

  • Boat journey: 30 min.
  • Depth range: 8-32 m
  • What to see: various life forms

Poll Seidte (Puffing Holes)

Description: This is a dive site for the quiet (windless) day or a wind from the north, which is rare during the summer months. The drop-off, close to shore, is sudden and dramatic. Dive on the rising tide as this gives greater comfort to the diver. 

  • Boat journey: 40 min.
  • Depth range: 11-27 m
  • What to see: various life forms

Blue Pool (Aran Island)

Description: Dive site on the exposed side of island, under steep cliffs, the spot known as Synge’s chair is directly above the dive site, this was Synge’s favourite place for
meditation. Very colourful drop-offs and wonderful colour, depths to 40 m. As with all dive sites facing the open Atlantic, diving can only be safely undertaken in good weather conditions. 

  • Boat journey: 40 min.
  • Depth range: 9-40 m
  • What to see: wonderful colours, various life forms

Finnis Reef (Aran Island)

Description: The dive site is located west of Innisheer Pier. The reef stretches east from the Island for just over 1km, and levels out on to a sandy bottom. The colour, plant and marine life is very varied. 

  • Boat journey: 20 min. 
  • Depth range: 5-18 m
  • What to see: various life forms

Brocklinmore (Aran Island)

Description: This is an underwater ledge on the east side of Inishmor. It offers some superb dives in waters that often are diveable when westerlies don’t allow you out behind the islands. The ledge occurs along the contour where the seabed shelves up from 30–20m and follows the general lie of the island. There is normally a gentle current 0.5–1.0 knots along the ledge which makes it an effortless dive. 

  • Boat journey: 55 min.
  • Depth range: 6-30 m
  • What to see: Rose Corals, White Sea Fans




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