- 3 May 2023
Discover the Hidden Paradise of Kinnago Bay in Donegal
If you're searching for a secluded and stunning beach to explore in Ireland, you can't go wrong with Kinnagoe Bay on the Inishowen Peninsula. Tucked away among steep, craggy hills, this small stretch of beach offers visitors a mini slice of paradise.
While the road to Kinnagoe Bay may be a bit of a challenge, it's well worth the effort. The small stretch of sandy beach is enclosed by a steeply sloping hillside, which gives it a unique privacy and sense of undiscovered beauty. Visitors can take a dip in the calm blue waters or camp for a peaceful night. Just be sure to take extra precautions when swimming, as there are no lifeguards on duty.
One of the main attractions of Kinnagoe Bay is the shipwrecked La Trinidad Valencera. Discovered by members of the Derry Sub-Aqua Club in 1971, the ship itself actually dates back over 400 years. La Trinidad Valencera was one of the 130 ships that made up the Spanish Armada. After defeat in the English Channel, the remaining fleet eventually ended up on the west coast of Ireland. La Trinidad Valencera ran aground after striking a reef in Kinnagoe Bay, where her wreckage lay undiscovered for hundreds of years. Since her discovery, an entire battery of cannons has been recovered, among many other treasures.
Visitors to Kinnago Bay can also take in some of the best views from above. There's a pull-in area at the top of the track that leads down to the parking area where you can park and take in the panoramic view. Keep in mind that there's only space for one car, so be careful not to block the road.
If you're planning to visit Kinnagoe Bay while exploring County Donegal, there are several things you need to know before you go. Firstly, the beach is located on the eastern side of the Inishowen Peninsula, a 10-minute drive from Greencastle and a 40-minute drive from Buncrana. The Kinnagoe Bay parking area is at the bottom of a very steep, winding road, so extreme care should be taken both on the way down and back up again. The parking area gets packed during the summer, so try and arrive early.
Although there is no official information online, Kinnagoe Bay is a popular swim spot. However, this is one for capable and experienced swimmers only as there's a big drop not far from the shore that can catch you unaware. Note that there are no lifeguards on duty, so take extra precautions when swimming.
The beauty of Kinnagoe Bay is that it's located close to many of the best things to do in Donegal. Just 4km from the fishing village of Greencastle, Kinnagoe Bay is a popular destination on public holidays yet remains a relatively hidden gem the rest of the time. Visitors to the area can also explore nearby attractions such as the stunning Malin Head, Doagh Famine Village, and the Inishowen 100.
In conclusion, Kinnagoe Bay is a hidden paradise on the Inishowen Peninsula that's definitely worth a visit. This secluded and stunning beach offers visitors natural beauty and an opportunity to explore the shipwreck of La Trinidad Valencera. Just remember to take extra precautions when swimming and be mindful of the steep and winding road down to the parking area. Don't miss the chance to discover this hidden gem and nearby attractions in Donegal.