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Fanore Bay

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Overview





Fanore Bay is situated in Galway Bay about two miles south by southwest of Black Head in Co. Clare on the west coast of Ireland. It is an open bay that offers an anchorage off a sandy beach.

Fanore Bay is situated in Galway Bay about two miles south by southwest of Black Head in Co. Clare on the west coast of Ireland. It is an open bay that offers an anchorage off a sandy beach.

The bay is completely open to westerly conditions and exposed to the Atlantic swell. It provides an exposed anchorage in offshore winds northeast around through east to southwest, or in very settled conditions. Access is straightforward as the bay is entirely open with no off-lying dangers.



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Keyfacts for Fanore Bay



Last modified
May 17th 2018

Summary

An exposed location with straightforward access.

Facilities
Mini-supermarket or supermarket availableHot food available in the localityPublic house or wine bar in the areaPost Office in the area


Nature
No fees for anchoring or berthing in this locationRemote or quiet secluded locationAnchoring locationBeach or shoreline landing from a tenderScenic location or scenic location in the immediate vicinitySet near a village or with a village in the immediate vicinity

Considerations
None listed



Position and approaches
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Haven position

53° 7.150' N, 009° 18.000' W

This is about quarter of a mile off the shoreline and in the centre of the bay with 10 metres of water.

What is the initial fix?

The following Fanore Bay initial fix will set up a final approach:
53° 7.150' N, 009° 18.820' W
This is set half a mile directly west of the position off the beach. However there are no off-lying dangers here so the initial fix does not have to be strictly adhered to.


What are the key points of the approach?

Offshore details are available in western Ireland’s Coastal Overview for Loop Head to Slyne Head Route location.


Not what you need?
Click the 'Next' and 'Previous' buttons to progress through neighbouring havens in a coastal 'clockwise' or 'anti-clockwise' sequence. Below are the ten nearest havens to Fanore Bay for your convenience.
Ten nearest havens by straight line charted distance and bearing:
  1. Ballyvaughan Bay - 3.4 miles E
  2. Doolin Pier (Ballaghaline Quay) - 4.5 miles SSW
  3. Spiddle - 4.6 miles N
  4. Aughinish Bay - 5.2 miles ENE
  5. Inisheer - 5.3 miles WSW
  6. Inishmaan - 6.3 miles W
  7. Liscannor Bay - 7 miles SSW
  8. Kinvara Bay - 7.7 miles ENE
  9. Galway Docks - 7.9 miles NE
  10. Rossaveal - 8 miles NW
These havens are ordered by straight line charted distance and bearing, and can be reordered by compass direction or coastal sequence:
  1. Ballyvaughan Bay - 3.4 miles E
  2. Doolin Pier (Ballaghaline Quay) - 4.5 miles SSW
  3. Spiddle - 4.6 miles N
  4. Aughinish Bay - 5.2 miles ENE
  5. Inisheer - 5.3 miles WSW
  6. Inishmaan - 6.3 miles W
  7. Liscannor Bay - 7 miles SSW
  8. Kinvara Bay - 7.7 miles ENE
  9. Galway Docks - 7.9 miles NE
  10. Rossaveal - 8 miles NW
To find locations with the specific attributes you need try:

Resources search



How to get in?
Fanore Bay
Image: cunjo via CC BY-SA 2.0


Fanore Point lies 1¾ miles southwestward of Black Head and Fanore Bay lies immediately to the south. The bay can be identified by its long beach backed by an extensive range of sand dunes. Vessels may anchor here with offshore winds about a ¼ of a mile from the strand in a depth of 10 metres. Should the wind be blowing hard from the east it might be preferable to remain here than to attempt to beat up Galway Bay.

Initial fix location The initial fix sets up a recommended easterly approach into the anchorage for half a mile. However, there are no off-lying dangers off this coastal area. As such the initial fix does not have to be strictly adhered to and it is safe to approach the beach at angles.

Haven location Sound in, and anchor in sand according to requisite draught and desired safety margins of water. Land by dinghy on the beach if conditions permit.


Why visit here?
Fanore’s name is derived from the Irish Fan Oir, meaning the ‘golden slope’. Although named after its golden sandy beach, it is famous for the weathered ‘Burren’ limestone plateaus that slope down to the shore here, and for it views out over the Aran Islands and Galway Bay.


The Burren Karst Landscape
Image: Tourism Ireland


Today the area is popular with caravan dwellers who enjoy swimming, fishing and surfing off the spectacular golden beach which is streaked by grey erosion of its Burren rock. But these were not the first people to live among the Fanore’s extensive sandhills. Stone Age men were here first and their house sites and kitchen middens, old dumps for domestic waste, can still be found in the immediate area. In fact, the entire Burren area is rich in archaeology with over 500 ring forts and over 80 known Neolithic tombs.

This sense of history can be appreciated by following the Caher River which is the only ‘Burren’ river to run along the surface from its source to the sea. The mouth of the river can be found ashore separating the sandy beach to the south from the rocky beach to the north. It leads to the Caher Valley that in past times hosted a number of Celtic ‘ring-forts’, in Irish Cahers, and both the river and the valley were named as such.

The Green Roads
Image: Tourism Ireland
Alongside the river and at the entrance to the valley is St. Patrick’s Church that was built in 1870. On its northern side, 100 metres uphill, a small crude building will be seen, that was the penal chapel of Fermoyle. With its remaining two metres high walls and filled in Gothic windows, this was the 1317 assembly point for the O’Brien forces before marching on Corcomroe Abbey. Above it is the kileen or children’s burial ground known as Cillin Formoyle that recalls the famine. It came as a wave of death to these grey slopes and entirely wiped out the village of Caherbannagh. Only the foundations and hearths remain as mute testimonials to this 'deserted village'.

A more welcome legacy of the tragedy are ‘The Green Roads’ that cut along the side of the hills throughout this area. These follow tracks that have been in continual use since early times. Some of these were built as relief projects during the dark days of the famine.

Today these walks are enormously popular attracting walkers and botanists from all over the world to stroll in splendid isolation through the world famous Burren to which Fanore offers a central entry point. The Burren, derived from the Irish word Boireann, meaning "great rock", is a lunar-like karst-landscape region. The rock area measures approximately 250 square kilometres and is one of the largest karst-landscape in Europe. Renowned for its unique flora and fauna The Burren hosts a spectacular array of over 70% of Ireland’s native flora. The hills here also teem with geological oddities such as labyrinthine cave systems, disappearing streams and lakes, tiered hillsides and oddly dissected pavements. Today a small portion of this has been designated as Burren National Park and it ranks amongst one of Ireland’s unique experiences.

Poulnabrone Dolmen, The Burren
Image: Tourism Ireland


From a boating perspective, Fanore’s prime attraction is a wind-wait location to enter Galway Bay. Should the wind be blowing hard from the east it might be preferable to remain here than to attempt to beat up the bay. However, there is plenty here to attract a shore party in the right conditions.


What facilities are available?
There is nothing at this remote beach. Fanore village, actually Craggagh, has a Post Office, shop and bar that is the commercial centre of this rambling, scattered community. The local pub provides traditional entertainment and serves good food.

Fanore is an hour by car from the city of Galway, an hour and a half from the city of Limerick and just over an hour from Shannon International Airport.


Any security concerns?
Never an issue known to have occurred to a vessel anchored in Fanore Bay.


With thanks to:
Mark Murray, Yacht Motivator.


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Please zoom out to see the 'initial fix' for this location.
The above plots are not precise and indicative only.


About Fanore Bay

Fanore’s name is derived from the Irish Fan Oir, meaning the ‘golden slope’. Although named after its golden sandy beach, it is famous for the weathered ‘Burren’ limestone plateaus that slope down to the shore here, and for it views out over the Aran Islands and Galway Bay.


The Burren Karst Landscape
Image: Tourism Ireland


Today the area is popular with caravan dwellers who enjoy swimming, fishing and surfing off the spectacular golden beach which is streaked by grey erosion of its Burren rock. But these were not the first people to live among the Fanore’s extensive sandhills. Stone Age men were here first and their house sites and kitchen middens, old dumps for domestic waste, can still be found in the immediate area. In fact, the entire Burren area is rich in archaeology with over 500 ring forts and over 80 known Neolithic tombs.

This sense of history can be appreciated by following the Caher River which is the only ‘Burren’ river to run along the surface from its source to the sea. The mouth of the river can be found ashore separating the sandy beach to the south from the rocky beach to the north. It leads to the Caher Valley that in past times hosted a number of Celtic ‘ring-forts’, in Irish Cahers, and both the river and the valley were named as such.

The Green Roads
Image: Tourism Ireland
Alongside the river and at the entrance to the valley is St. Patrick’s Church that was built in 1870. On its northern side, 100 metres uphill, a small crude building will be seen, that was the penal chapel of Fermoyle. With its remaining two metres high walls and filled in Gothic windows, this was the 1317 assembly point for the O’Brien forces before marching on Corcomroe Abbey. Above it is the kileen or children’s burial ground known as Cillin Formoyle that recalls the famine. It came as a wave of death to these grey slopes and entirely wiped out the village of Caherbannagh. Only the foundations and hearths remain as mute testimonials to this 'deserted village'.

A more welcome legacy of the tragedy are ‘The Green Roads’ that cut along the side of the hills throughout this area. These follow tracks that have been in continual use since early times. Some of these were built as relief projects during the dark days of the famine.

Today these walks are enormously popular attracting walkers and botanists from all over the world to stroll in splendid isolation through the world famous Burren to which Fanore offers a central entry point. The Burren, derived from the Irish word Boireann, meaning "great rock", is a lunar-like karst-landscape region. The rock area measures approximately 250 square kilometres and is one of the largest karst-landscape in Europe. Renowned for its unique flora and fauna The Burren hosts a spectacular array of over 70% of Ireland’s native flora. The hills here also teem with geological oddities such as labyrinthine cave systems, disappearing streams and lakes, tiered hillsides and oddly dissected pavements. Today a small portion of this has been designated as Burren National Park and it ranks amongst one of Ireland’s unique experiences.

Poulnabrone Dolmen, The Burren
Image: Tourism Ireland


From a boating perspective, Fanore’s prime attraction is a wind-wait location to enter Galway Bay. Should the wind be blowing hard from the east it might be preferable to remain here than to attempt to beat up the bay. However, there is plenty here to attract a shore party in the right conditions.

Other options in this area


Click the 'Next' and 'Previous' buttons to progress through neighbouring havens in a coastal 'clockwise' or 'anti-clockwise' sequence. Alternatively here are the ten nearest havens available in picture view:
Coastal clockwise:
Ballyvaughan Bay - 3.4 miles E
Inisheer - 5.3 miles WSW
Inishmaan - 6.3 miles W
Kilronan - 8.2 miles W
Aughinish Bay - 5.2 miles ENE
Coastal anti-clockwise:
Doolin Pier (Ballaghaline Quay) - 4.5 miles SSW
Liscannor Bay - 7 miles SSW
Seafield (Quilty) - 12.3 miles SSW
Mutton Island - 12.4 miles SSW
Doonbeg - 15.1 miles SSW

Navigational pictures


These additional images feature in the 'How to get in' section of our detailed view for Fanore Bay.













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