Dursey Island, Crookhaven

4.6
#8 of 16 in Nature in County Cork
Dursey Island lies at the southwestern tip of the Beara Peninsula in the west of County Cork in Ireland. Dursey Island is 6.5 kilometres long and 1.5 kilometres wide. The island is separated from the mainland by a narrow stretch of water, Dursey Sound, which has a very strong tidal race, with the submerged Flag Rock close to the centre of the channel. The island has just six or so permanent residents, and is connected to the mainland by Ireland's only cable car. Dursey has no shops, pubs or restaurants. At one point there was a post office on the island; this has now closedGeography and faunaThe townlands on the island are Ballynacallagh, Kilmichael, and Tilickafinna. There are three main peaks, the highest 252m. The promontories and rocks off Dursey include:Bull RockOff the western point of the island are three rocks: Bull Rock, Cow Rock and Calf Rock. On Bull Rock in a tidal race stands a lighthouse built in 1888 and automated in March 1991. This island was inhabited until this time.Calf RockA manned lighthouse on Calf Rock was destroyed in a storm in 1881 and its remains can still be seen.Cow RockCow Rock is home to a number of nesting colonies of seabirds. Dolphins, whales and basking shark are sometimes seen in the sea off the island.HistoryPrehistoric sites have been surveyed on the island, including examples of bullaun and cup-marked stones in Ballynacallagh, a prehistoric hut site at Killowen, and a radial stone enclosure at Maughanaclea.
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  • Dursey Island is accessed by a somewhat precarious looking cable car located at the tip of the Beara Peninsula. Should you want to cross and explore the island, keep in mind that the cable car does no...  more »
  • An experience to remember We went to Dursey Island with no expectations. Rugged bleak west coast coast, stalk country side. We left OZ in the middle of winter, so the slight drop in daily temp was not...  more »
  • Truly spectacular ocean crossing by cableway (7 seats) and one in particular!! The island is not very large but coming up at the top you will have a breathtaking landscape with Gale! Attention to the return line is very long, for us two and a half hours of waiting, it was worth it.
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