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Carrick-a-rede

Ballintoy

Average score: 0

Site name: Carrick-a-rede
Location: Descriptive location referring to nearest landfall i.e. town, village, harbour or island
Ballintoy
Type: Describes whether this dive site can be dived from the shore, from a boat, or both
Boat
Wreck: Dive sites which include a shipwreck (or part of a shipwreck) are labelled with a ‘Yes’
No
Min. dive depth (m): The approximate minimum depth of the dive given in metres
5
Max. dive depth (m): The approximate maximum depth of the dive given in metres
15

Max. seabed depth (m): The maximum depth of the seabed at the site taken from the intersect between the dive site point and the depth contour on an Admiralty Standard Nautical Chart
25

Diving experience (min level): The recommended minimum level of diving experience for a specific site, described as Novice (<50 dives in temperate/cold waters and minimum certification of PADI Open/Advanced Open Water, BSAC Ocean Diver or CMAS 1 star), Intermediate (50-100 dives in temperate/cold waters and minimum certification of PADI Rescue Dive, BSAC Sports Dive or CMAS 2 star) or Advanced (>250 dives in temperate/cold waters and minimum certification of PADI Divemaster, BSAC Dive Leader or CMAS 3 star
Novice

Optimal wind direction: The general wind direction which causes minimal exposure at the site, corresponding to 8 points of the compass: North (N), North East (NE), East (E, South East (SE), South (S), South West (SW), West, North West (NW)
SE/S/SW

Exposure: The approximate level of exposure to wind and wave action at the site on any given day, described as Sheltered (inshore sites surrounded by a form of shelter on all sides), Moderate (sites which are partially sheltered) or Exposed (sites with little to no shelter)
Moderate

Tidal strength: Anecdotal description of tidal strength at the site
Moderate

Marine Protected Area: A Yes or No highlighting whether or not the site occurs within a Marine Protected Area
No

Visibility: Anecdotal description of the typical underwater visibility at the site
Excellent
Best time to dive: Anecdotal recommendation for the best time to dive the site for optimal underwater conditions. This typically relates to the stage of the tide
Slack (Ballycastle)
Getting There: Directions for getting to the site

By boat from Ballycastle or Portballintrae. You can dive on either side (east and west) of Carrick-a-rede island.

Facilities: Details of nearest facilities to dive site i.e. public car parking and toilets, slipways etc

Ballycastle Harbour has a gated slipway (open during office hours) and pontoon berthing (fees apply). For use contact the Ballycastle Harbour Office: 02820768525 / 07803505984. Free car parking is available above the harbour and marina. Free public toilets are available in the visitor information office above the harbour.

Portballintrae Harbour has a slipway (although access is tight and the harbour can be busy during peak holiday times), free car parking on Beach Road, above the Harbour, and public toilets above the harbour wall. Fees apply for berthing; for use contact Portrush Harbour Office: 02870822307 / 0788981860.

Nearest tank filling is Aquaholics in Ballycastle or Portstewart (ring ahead: 028 7083 2584)

Hazards: Anecdotal information on possible hazards at the site for divers and snorkellers

There can be a strong swell against the rocks

Description: A general description of the physical features of the dive site

The cliffs on the eastern side of the rope bridge have many caverns. There are boulders at the base of the wall and a sandy seabed around the bay.

Biodiversity: A description of the species composition at the site. Species of interest are highlighted. Follow the links for more information about the species on the NBN Atlas Northern Ireland website

The vertical bedrock walls here are covered in kelp and a variety of seaweeds, whilst encrusting sponges are found amongst the caverns. The European spiny lobster Palinurus elephas, a Northern Ireland Priority Species has been recorded here a number of times recently by divers. Recent records from other sites around the County Antrim coast suggest that this species may be showing signs of recovery (or range expansion).

View all species records from this site

A link to the dive site location on the NBN Atlas Northern Ireland website, showing all species records from within a 1km boundary of the site centroid. Any new species records from the site submitted to Seasearch, iRecord, CEDaR Online Recording or iNaturalist will appear here
Local Charters: A link to the website for the nearest Dive Centre to the site. A map of all dive centres is provided under ‘Go Diving’

Aquaholics

Environmental and Historical Designations: A list of any environmental or historical designations attributed to the site, or overlapping it. Follow the link for more information

More Information: Links to additional information found online for the dive site

Aquaholic – Causeway Coast

Northern Ireland Marine MapViewer

Safety: Safety tips

  • In an emergency call 999 or 112 and ask for the coastguard.
  • Follow VHF radio Channel 16 (156.8 MHz), the international distress frequency. Send a distress alert followed by ‘MAYDAY, MAYDAY, MAYDAY’ and ‘This is [boat name]’.
  • Find nearest defibrillator (AED) here.
  • Ballycastle Harbour Office No. 028 207 68525 Mobile Number 07803 505084
  • When navigating within Ballycastle Harbour, use VHF Channel 80.
  • Portballintrae/Portrush Harbour Office: 02870822307 / 0788981860
  • When navigating within the harbour, use VHF Channel 12.
Latitude, Longitude: The approximate XY coordinates for the dive site in Decimel Degrees (DD). These can be converted to DMS or DDM by following the link below
55.2422, -6.333422

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