A new book by sea kayaker David Walsh aims to give people advice on how to travel to the many islands off the coast of Ireland.
Walsh has been to 503 of the 574 islands featured in his revised book, entitled “Oileáin – a guide to Ireland’s Islands.”
Some of the most challenging islands to land on are Fastnet Rock or the Bull Rock, which is located a mile out from Dursey Island off the Cork coast, he says.
“The most challenging ones are the ones where the tides make it difficult. You have to go with the tide and they’re so strong in the south-east,” he told TheJournal.ie.
“The tide can be flooding past the rock so you only get one shot.”
Walsh had visited many of the islands in his youth but began taking sea kayaking more seriously in 1990, after he saw two kayakers rowing between icebergs while on a trip to the Arctic. His passion led him to help found the Irish Sea Kayaking Association in 1995.
His book, which he says is as much for armchair travelers as for kayakers, was actually first published in 2004. Two hundred more islands have been added to the new version of the book, which has also been updated with a greater focus for holiday makers.
Walsh, a solicitor, said he enjoys the challenge of reaching the islands but has no desire to ever live on an island himself.
“People don’t go to offshore islands to look for legal advice so it’s not for me. I have too many weaknesses. I love the wilderness feeling. There’s so little going on below the watermark, you just meet no one and nothing,” he said.
David Walsh’s book “Oileáin – a guide to Ireland’s Islands” can be ordered online from his website www.oileain.org.