Birding Clonakilty Estuary

There is a large tidal inlet that stretches from Clonakilty in West Cork to Inchydoney Beach. Inchydoney is a small island near about 2 Kilometres from Clonakilty. It is about a 70 minute drive from Cork city. Although Inchydoney is described as an island, I wasn’t able to find where it is separated from the mainland! At low tide there are large areas of mudflats exposed that provide a rich feeding area for large numbers of birds. The road from Clonakilty to Inchydoney Beach hugs the channel and gives good views of birds. You can drive all the way to Inchydoney beach which is popular with surfers. There are grasses and dunes at the back of the beach.

There are several places to park that will give you good access to birds. As you leave Clonakilty for Inchydoney, you can park near the model railway attraction and walk about 100 metres to the start of the inlet. There is a footpath along the shoreline and seating at regular intervals. Car Parking co-ordinates are 51.620662, -8.883704

Drive further along the road to get to the other end of the inlet. You can walk along the shoreline and also check out the trees and farmlands. Car Parking co-ordinates are 51.604006, -8.872036

There is further carparking available at the beach which is easily accessed from the car parking area: 51.596709, -8.868463

While you are in the area, you should visit Reen Pier, which is about 40 minutes away by car.