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Dungarvan & Helvick

Your Comments: 7 Read or add your comments

Courtesy Flag

Irish Tricolour


52°04.5N 007°33W


AC 2049 Old Head of Kinsale to Tuskar Rock, AC 2017 Dungarvan, SC 5622, Imray C57 Tuskar Rock to Old Head of Kinsale (has Plan of Dungarvan)

Rules & Regulations

None Known


Carricknamoan Rock; Carrickapane Rock; The Gainers; Helvick Rock (Shallows)

Tidal Data Times & Range

HW is HW Cobh +00010 MHWS 4.1m MHWN 3.3m MLWN 1.1m MLWS 0.4m

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General Description

Dungarvan Sailing Club  tel no +353 (0)584 5663  

In terms of coastal cruising this bay offers a convenient, sheltered stopping off point.  If you are coming down on the ebb from Dunmore it is a comfortable tide?s sailing depending on your speed through the water and you would arrive after Low Water slack ready to take the flood up to Dungarvan. 

The alternative of Helvick harbour offers a good, sheltered anchorage in anything other than strong winds from the Easterly sector (N to SE).  If you have a fin keel you will have to work out your timings as there is now one part of the buoyed channel up to Dungarvan which dries at LWS; best wait for half tide and go up on the flood or plump for Helvick. In general a yacht entering Dungarvan should be prepared to take the ground - see below. 

At a glance the passage up to Dungarvan looks daunting but, in fact, it?s no worse than any of the estuaries on the Norfolk coast and is very well buoyed and, at its end, the town of Dungarvan is well worth the trip. Be aware that if you are making the approach in developed South Easterly weather the sea can break over the bar just to the West of Ballynacourty Point. However there is good water close up along the North Shore in the approach between Ballynacourty Light and Wyse Point

Dungarvan use to be a fairly busy little port but now has virtually no commercial activity other than a small number of local angling boats and potters.  The Dungarvan Sailing Club has a new pontoon which dries at the upstream end of the Town Quay  and is very welcoming to visitors.  There are other options for deep draft boats which are discussed in the berthing and moorings section below.

If you are travelling Westbound this is the last major town with all facilities


The initial fix on our chartlet is midway between the yellow Outfall Buoy and

.......... Ballynacourty Point, after that all the familiar buoyage has been changed. The basic channel is the same ie running along the North of the bay and then turning South in a right handed loop towards the town.  There has been a local survey done and we hope to have a chartlet of that in due course but until then we provide a copy of the Notice to Mariners issued locally:

We cannot emphasise strongly enough that the buoyage overlay on the Admiralty Chart (above right) is an approximation of the information below.

Waterford City & County Council. 


Changes to aids to navigation Dungarvan Harbour 

Waterford City & County Council being the Harbour Authority for Dungarvan Harbour hereby give notice that on May 23rd. 2016 or as soon thereafter as circumstances permit the following changes will be made to the aids to navigation  in the channel to Dungarvan Town Quay. 

Deadman Sands & Glendine Buoys will be permanently disestablished and withdrawn from station. 

Ballynacourty & Wyse buoys will be relocated to new positions 

5 New lighted buoys will be established. Approaching from seaward the positions & characteristics of the new buoyage system is as follows.









520   04.553N

0070 33.795W

Starboard Lateral Buoy


Fl. G. 8sec.



520   04.716N

0070 34.066W

Port Lateral Buoy


Fl. R  8sec.



520   04.875N

0070 34.306W

Port Lateral Buoy


Fl. R  5sec.



520   04.899N

0070 34.355W

Starboard Lateral Buoy


Fl. G. 5sec.



520   04.921N

0070 34.545W

Port Lateral Buoy


Fl. R.  10sec.


Deadman South

520   04.952N

0070 34.647W

Starboard Lateral Buoy


Fl. G. 10sec.


Razor Channel

520   04.930N

0070 34.973W

Port Lateral Buoy


Fl. R.  7sec.


Davy Murray

52° 04.960'N

007° 35.300'W

Starboard Lateral Buoy


Fl. G.   8sec.


Spit Bank

52° 04.970'N

007° 35.830'W

Starboard Lateral Buoy


Fl. G.   6sec.



52° 04.920'N

007° 35.950'W

Port Lateral Buoy


Fl. R    6sec.


Black Strand

52° 05.070'N

007° 36.310'W

Starboard Lateral Buoy


Fl. G.   5sec.



52° 05.100'N

007° 36.380'W

Port Lateral Buoy


Fl. R.   5sec.


Hundred & Ten

52° 05.213'N

007° 36.785'W



Fl. G.   4sec.



52° 05.228'N

007° 36.848'W



Fl. R.   4sec.



52° 05.339'N

007° 36.903'W



Fl. R.  3sec.



52° 05.367'N

007° 36.869'W



Fl. G.   3sec.


The channel to Dungarvan Town Quay is liable to shift and buoys may be moved to take account of changes. Vessels bound for Dungarvan are advised to identify the buoyed channel before proceeding.The best advice is to make passage up the channel on a flood tide in good visibility and watch your echo sounder. If you should touch the bottom in those conditions it is not a big problem, the bottom is sand and there are no known large lumps of hard stuff.



Back again to the alternative, Helvick Harbour.  There are no hazards on the approach to this drying harbour but you are unlikely to find a berth inside. A yacht should not be left unattended in here as it may have to move to accommodate local fishing vessels. In the past there were three or four visitor's buoys outside the harbour but they have been removed and you will have to come to anchor between the Gainers and the harbour itself. This should not pose a problem and it will provide a comfortable stopping off point in all but winds from the North round to the SE.


Berthing, Mooring & Anchoring

If you are fin keeled you would wise to give the Sailing Club a ring

........ (landline is generally manned Friday, Saturday and Sunday 1800 to 2200) before making an approach here because there are very few places you will be able to park.  There is an anchorage in a deep pool off Connigar Point but the tide runs very strongly through here and the holding can be poor. It would be unwise to leave a yacht unattended in this anchorage. Sometimes it is possible to borrow a mooring here but be very careful in the dinghy as the tide runs strongly.(but see our member's note in comments at the end - he found a good holding here) The deep pool off the Town Quay towards the bridge does have sufficient depth for a fin keeler but it normally has resident moorings and you would need to check before relying on one being available. If a mooring is not available you should not anchor in this area.

Having said that, if you can take the ground, you should be able to tie up to the Sailing Club pontoon or if you need to lean against the wall then the quay between the pontoon and the bridge is your spot and there are even a couple of ladders there.  The other possibility is that the sailing club may have a drying mooring on the north side of the channel that you can borrow for a couple of nights. If you decide to anchor you should moor fore and aft as there is a strongish tide through here and there is not enough room for you to swing.

The Dungarven Sailing Club website is at https://dhsc.ie/


Water and shore power is available on the Club pontoon and you should contact the duty manager for further information on that. (His number will be displayed at the top end of the access ramp.) The club on the other side of the bridge has showers and toilets. It's a very short walk for provisions and an even shorter one to several pubs. Usually, if you ask nicely you should find someone to give you a lift to the fuel depot.

It's a very pleasant, out of the way spot which is not oversubscribed by visiting sailors or tourists and if you make your number with the Club before you get here then they are known for their hospitality and will do all they can to make you welcome.

There is a pub 500m from the harbour at Helvick and the village is a good mile away with a shop and pub.

Eating, Drinking & Entertainment

You will enjoy Dungarvan; it is a mix of the old and the new and plenty of music and craic in the pubs.


Your Ratings & Comments

Written by Fiona Balloch | 12th Jun 2023
We anchored in Helvick, but in order to get into more shelter, we anchored in the area which says on the chart that there are small craft moorings. These appear all to have been lifted. Instead there are 3 or 4 lobster buoys only. We have put out tripping line. Holding is very good.
1 of 1 people found this helpful
Written by Don Thomson 3 | 6th Sep 2021
I reviewed these notes in September. The information I have on the buoyage is now over five years old so treat it with a pinch of salt.
Update Summer 2019
Written by Don Thomson 3 | 26th Jul 2019
These notes were reviewed in July 2019. We have been assured by the local authorities that the buoyage has not changed in the last couple of years and that the buoyage shown on our chart is good which is why we haven't put the 2019 chart up on the site.
Written by Don Thomson | 24th Apr 2017
The buoyage in Dungarvan Bay is pretty well the same as 2016 and we have added a link to a chart supplied by the Dungarvan Pilot
1 of 1 people found this helpful
Written by Don Thomson | 21st Apr 2017
I reviewed these notes in April 2017. I'm awaiting confirmation of this years buoyage
Update 2015
Written by dononshytalk | 1st May 2015
These notes were reviewed by Don at the end of April. Some changes have been made on the advice of Donal Walsh the pilot for this area. The overlay on the 2011 chart in the gallery is still valid in as much as it shows the approximate positions of the buoyage.
Visit early June 2014
Written by yachtman | 9th Jul 2014
June 2014

There was good holding on a single anchor off Cunnigar pt.. Locals indicated the channel has silted slightly and the dog leg near the point has moved slightly. However we draw 2 mtrs and had no problems entering at above half tide.

Useful large supermarket on the quay. Nice Square with plenty of welcoming hostelries.
1 of 1 people found this helpful
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