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Carnlough Harbour

Your Comments: 6 Read or add your comments

Courtesy Flag

Flag, Red Ensign


None given


AC 2199 North Channel South Part,... SC5612 – 14, Larne Lough to Cushendun Bay,.... Imray C64 Belfast Lough to Lough Foyle and Crinan

Rules & Regulations

None Known


None Known

Tidal Data Times & Range

HW Carnlough varies + or – 20 minutes on Belfast. The best information is that MHWS is 1.8m and MHWN is 1.5m; there is no data for LW. See Approach and Entry section

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General Description

Contacts:   HM  Carnlough (and Glenarm) 02828 841285 mob  07703 606763.   VHF Channel 16 switching to M1 (37A)

Carnlough Harbour is situated at the northern end of Carnlough Bay between Garron Point and Park Head. It is a small harbour with an inner and outer basin; the inner basin is generally full of local boats and the visitor is unlikely to find a berth there. Basically you'd be better off these days going into Glenarm;  the HM says you are unlikely to get in and, if you do, it'd be rafted on to a lobster potter. There are alongside berths available on the Quay opposite the harbour entrance to the south west of the lead in marks or at the outer end of the north east pier but these are not boat friendly. 

The harbour entrance is marked by black and white striped beacons and there are lead in marks on 310° to guide one in.  The harbour entrance does have depth problems due to kelp and a sand bar but was dredged in 2010 but as at 2019 it's down to about a metre.

As with most harbours on this coast, once inside there is good protection from most winds, but entrance should not be attempted in strong onshore winds.  Winds from the SE would make the quay an uncomfortable berth.  The Harbour Master also advises that it would be unwise to leave boats unattended on the quay wall as holiday visitors occupying the Caravan Site near the harbour can sometimes cause disruption and unwanted empty cans and bottles.

The town itself although normally quiet is a lovely spot from which to explore the Glens of Antrim and has several attractive walks close by. 


Tidal Data:
The Standard Port for this coastline is Belfast....

....nearly ten miles inland from the Irish Sea which funnels in and out past here through the North Channel at vast rates causing eddies and counter currents around every headland on the way.  Tidal predictions for the larger ports are as accurate as can be in such conditions but, for the minor ports & anchorages, extrapolation is virtually impossible. Belfast itself varies anything from 10 to 50 minutes from Dover and HW Carnlough  varies + or - 20 minutes on Belfast. The best information is that MHWS is 1.8m and MHWN is 1.5m; there is no data for LW.

The Easy Tide link given on this page is for Red Bay further along the coast, so is approximate.

Approach and Entry:

There are no off lying dangers to take one by surprise and entry should be made from the South East on a heading of 310°.

The harbour entrance was down to 0.5 m before dredging in 2010, It is shown in almanacs earlier than that as 1m.  The Harbour Master says it is now 1m (May 2019); what it will be for the 2020 season is debatable. 

It is suggested that a visiting boat would be wise to contact the HM as to the state of the dredge before attempting an entry and to stay close on the lead in marks when doing so.

If in any doubt whatever, Glenarm Marina is less than 2 miles south of here.

Berthing, Mooring & Anchoring

Alongside berths in about 1.5m are available on the quay....

....to the SW of the lead in marks and at the outer end of the NE pier.  It is a very small harbour with not very much room to manoeuvre a big boat and it also shallows to nothing at the NE end of the harbour.  Berthing cost £2.50 per metre in 2019.

It is also possible to anchor about 200yards off the harbour mouth in about 5m when the weather is settled and offshore.


Water is supplied from a standpipe on the quay in the inner harbour; there are no showers but public toilets (not 24hrs) are available in the car park on the other side of the Harbour road. 

There is still a petrol station on the road out of Carnlough to the South. 

The Post Office has NI Tourist Rep and there are shops, a bank and ATM on the High Street.

Eating, Drinking & Entertainment

The visitor will find plenty of pubs and restaurants as this village has become a focal point for those who want to “Get away” from the big city.  There is a bank, ATM and also several small convenience stores


Your Ratings & Comments

Written by Don Thomson 3 | 27th Jul 2022
No changes apart from reiterating our (and the HM's) advice to use Glenarm.
1 of 1 people found this helpful
Update Early Summer 2021
Written by Don Thomson 3 | 27th Jul 2021
No changes
Update Spring 2019
Written by Don Thomson 3 | 2nd May 2019
I reviewed these notes in May 2019. It hasn't been dredged for about eight years so the depth at the entrance is doubtful. The HM (who covers Glenarm as well) was basically un-encouraging about taking cruising yachts in here.
Written by Don Thomson | 5th Apr 2017
These notes were reviewed by Don in April 2017. They are now charging £2.20 pmpn - seems to have dropped from earlier years.
Update 2015
Written by dononshytalk | 18th Mar 2015
These notes were updated by Don in March 2015. The prices have been changed
Update November 2013
Written by dononshytalk | 5th Nov 2013
These notes were updated by Don Thomson the 5th November 2013. It should be noted that this harbour is only suitable for shallow draft boats and there is only room for one or perhaps two visitors at a time.
1 of 1 people found this helpful
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