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Boat charter & cruising

Boat Charter & Cruising

Boat hire provides a great way to sample the sites and sounds of Northern Ireland’s coastline and inland waterways.
Either take control of your own boat (bareboat) or charter a boat with a Skipper on board. Boats vary from high speed power boats, barges, luxury motor cruisers, fishing vessels and sailing yachts.  The provision of boat hire means this decision is made for you. Bareboat boat hire in Northern Ireland is only available on Lough Erne, where you can hire from a range of providers. However boats can be chartered with a qualified Skipper on the majority of the main tidal Loughs i.e. Foyle, Belfast, Strangford and Carlingford.

If you fancy getting away from it all, then boat hire on Lough Erne is the perfect venue. The Fermanagh lakes provide the right balance of unspoilt countryside, bars, restaurants and lakeshore attractions. Hire a 20 -30ft motor cruiser with up to eight beds and all mod cons and cast off with friends and family.

How to get started
First decide what suits you best. If you are looking for enjoyment with less responsibility then a Skipper charter is for you. A wide range of charter boats are available for a variety of needs. However if you want to make the decisions and travel at your own pace then hire a motor cruiser on Lough Erne, again there are a large number of providers to choose from.

Is it easy?
Boat Charter with a Skipper is easy. Let the Skipper take responsibility whilst you help crew the vessel.  Cruiser Hire takes a bit more practice but all hire companies will provide at least half a days training before you embark on your travels.

Is it expensive?
Boat Charter with a Skipper costs from £100 per day, longer charter rates are negotiable.


Self Drive Motor Cruisers are typically hired for short breaks costing from £500 or seven day breaks from £800. Different boats have different standards so like any service you pay for what you get.

Just Some Ideas

Down Cruising Club / Lightship, Killinchy, Newtownards

Ballydorn is located upon the northeast coast of Ireland, upon Strangford Lough’s western shore and to the west of Rainey Island.

Manor House Marine Boat Hire, Irvinestown, Enniskillen

The longest established family owned boat charter company in Lough Erne – over 40 years young! Explore some of the finest castles, gardens and heritage sites in Ireland at your pace on board one of our exclusively designed luxury cruisers.

Corraquill Cruising, Derrylin, Enniskillen

Situated at Lock 1 on the Shannon-Erne Waterway. We can offer you a choice of traditionally styled broad beam, fully equipped barge cruises or maybe you would like to cruise Dutch style in our luxury Dutch style barges which are specially suited ...

Nelsons Boats, Donaghadee

Public trips from Donaghadee harbour from June - September. Sea fishing twice daily with some tackle provided. Afternoon pleasure cruises (some landing) to the scenic Copeland Islands. Ideal for rambling, picnics, bird and sea-life watching. ...

East Coast Adventure Centre, Rostrevor, Newry

With our mountain centre nestled just outside the village of Rostrevor, our water sports centres on the shores of Carlingford Lough in Warrenpoint, our Mountain Bike Hire and Uplift service located at the Rostrevor MTB Trails in Kilbroney Forest ...

Drumaheglis Marina Caravan Park, Ballymoney

On the banks of the Lower River Bann, 30 minutes from the North Coast, this secluded campsite has undergone a major facelift over the past 12 months.

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Practical Information

European Regional Development Fund