Active is renowned for its historic castles, landscapes and beautiful seaside cliffs but it is also a wonderful fishing destination in Europe that does surprise enthusiasts. Temperatures are mild all throughout the year so waters and climate are consistent. You can thus go fishing literally whenever you want.
Ireland is surrounded by coastline. This is why sea fishing is so popular, with people often catching salmon and trout. Lakes are also available, just like rivers, all throughout the country. If you want to be 100% sure that you will catch something, you can even go to stocked fisheries.
In Ireland, you can enjoy numerous free fishing destinations but there are permits or licenses that are needed in some destinations and to allow you to catch some species. This is why you want to check before you start fishing. In the event that you have no idea if something special is needed, you should hire a regional fishing guide that can help you make good choices.
The Great Western Lakes
In Irish, lakes are known as Lough so you may want to learn this term when you want to go fishing in the Great Western Lakes. These are actually some of the last European wild trout limestone destinations that still exist. Trout fishing is top-notch here.
The lakes are all limestone-based so they are very productive. They are Cullin, Conn, Carra, Mask and Lough Corrib. All have a high wild trout population, with a high possibility of catching a trout of over 5 pounds.
The best fish you can catch in the Great Western Lakes is the fast-growing ferox trout that can go over 20 pounds. You can also find salmon in Conn and Corrib while pike is available in all the lakes.
The closest large city to the lakes is Galway. This is where you will want to stay. You need a license to fish for salmon but everything else is free.
When it comes to sea trout fishing in Ireland, you absolutely need to check out Lough Currane. It is located in Waterville, Kerry, and is a large lake that covers over 2,500 acres. The scenery is spectacular, featuring beautiful mountains so you might want to use your camera to do more than just snap picks of what you catch.
You can expect great sea trout and salmon fishing experiences but you can also catch wild brown trout. The most common fishing method used here is fly fishing. However, spinning and trolling are also popular.
Fishing in Cork Harbour is simply a way of life. If you are an angler, you will love this spot in Ireland. Cork Harbour has interesting unique characteristics that make fishing great, like an indented shoreline, sandy beaches, shallow mudflats, deep waterways and a sheltered bay.
Once there, you can enjoy some great fly fishing to catch mullet and sea bass, which are the most popular. Besides these, you can also tach pollack, blue shark, conger eel and blonde ray.
The main local fishing hub is Cobh. Here you can find many deep-sea charter boats that offer guided fishing and equipment rental. Smaller guided trips are also possible, with sea bass being the main target.
When it comes to salmon fishing in Ireland, Moy is the most productive and famous destination in the country, with over 6,000 salmon caught every single year. Between April and June, Spring salmon comes in and averages 10 pounds. In July, the peak time is reached, with salmon running up the river. The smaller summer salmon comes back at the start of June.
Related: Best Fishing Places In Germany
Usually, salmon fishing in River Moy is spinning and fishing. However, bait fishing is popular. Basically, some areas are better for some fishing methods. That is why you should visit a local bait shop so you can get advice. Some parts of the river are privately owned. If you want to fish there, you need a permit. Fortunately, the prices are reasonable.
You want to go to Galway Bay if you enjoy sea fishing in stunning scenery settings. There are charter boats you can take in Spiddal and Rosaveal to reach the outer bay. The very best fishing spots are located in the Aran Islands. You can also consider the Burren coastline.
If in the area, you want to also consider lunch on one of the beautiful Aran Islands. This is simply because they are beautiful. In addition, if you enjoy shark fishing, this is a premier destination in Ireland.
Upper Lough Erne
If you enjoy fishing for pike and you visit Ireland, go to Upper Lough Erne, which is located on the border with Northern Ireland. The countryside here is a good backdrop and the lake is really fertile, often producing pike reaching 30 pounds. Besides pike, you can also fish for salmon, perch, brown trout and sea trout.
In Upper Lough Erne you can use lure fishing, trolling and fly fishing. Lodges can be visited in Kilmore Quay to get the supplies that you need or guides.
In Ireland, those that want to catch wild trout often visit River Boyne, especially when they enjoy fly fishing. This river is located in Boyne Valley and is surrounded by meadows and rolling farmland.
Wild trout caught averages 2 pounds and you can catch fish over 3 pounds. Besides the size, you should know that the fish population is pretty huge. You can also randomly catch some salmon and starting in June, sport fishing is a favorite past-time. Some parts of the river are controlled by private owners and fishing clubs. For these, permits are necessary.
Erne and Shannon are 2 of the largest rivers in the country and they are located in the middle of the country. These two cover a very large region and include many lakes. These are what people refer to as lakelands. Literally hundreds of small and large lakes allow you to have a great fishing experience so you can catch many fish species, ranging from pike to coarse fish.
There are many bait anglers that visit the Lakelands due to the big schools of roach, rudd, tench and bream. This means large pike has a lot of food and is very common. Guides can also easily be hired if you need them.
West Cork is popular among tourists in Ireland because it is a very beautiful region filled with bays, estuaries and beaches. Besides this, many perfect fishing spots are available for those that want to catch sea bass, although other species are plentiful.
If you are looking for a base town to stay in, Kinsale is a great choice. The town overlooks the harbor and you can enjoy the views from one of the many restaurants there. Also, deep sea charter boats start here and you can take them to catch some pollack, cod and coalfish.
Because of the presence of numerous shipwrecks, many species enjoy a great habitat. Along the coastline, you can catch sea bass through bait fishing, fly fishing and spinning.
Connemara is located to the west of Galway and is a beautiful mountain region that features so many great lakes for fishing. If you enjoy angling and you want to catch salmon, the destination is a true dream.
Those that can take a car and drive one hour to the west can also enjoy deep glacial lakes. Sea trout and salmon are plenty here.
Last but not least, Dingle Peninsula is a great place to go fishing in the southeast part of the country. It features varied coastline with golden sands and rocky shoreline. Even towering cliffs can be seen. Many species are present here, including blue shark, ray and sea bass.