Bere Island lies at the entrance to the beautiful Bantry Bay and guards the deepwater harbour of Berehaven in West Cork - one of the deepest in Europe. The island is roughly 11x5km and lies just 2km offshore, with the mountain ranges of the Beara Peninsula providing a dramatic backdrop to its stunning scenery.

(Please hover over images and click to view gallery.)

what's on?

(All events are free, places allocated on a 1st come-1st served basis!)

Daily events

Whale & Dolphin watching trips with Sea Safari

Tuesday 7th June

10:00hrs           Talk on beekeeping -  Barry Hanley

14:00hrs          Walk to Cloughland Lake - Daniel Moriarty

Wednesday 8th June

10:45hrs          Walk around the eastern loop of the island - Chris Sullivan

14:00hrs          Nature walk to Cloughland Tower - Clare Heardman

Thursday 9th June

12:00hrs          Talk and visit to Bere Island Oyster & Seaweed Farm – David Andrews  - Bere Island Heritage                              Centre

14:00hrs          Talk on medicinal herbs - Rosari Kingston – Bere Island Heritage Centre


Friday 10th June

11:00hrs          Butterfly walk – Damaris Lysaght – Meet at Murphy’s Shop, Rerrin

14:00hrs          Introduction to Dexter Cattle – Steve Collins – Bere Island Heritage Centre

Evening           Music with Michael Harrington & Co. – Desys Hotel


Saturday 11th June

10:00hrs          Nature walk & Pond Dipping – Geoff Hunt – Meet at Murphy’s Shop, Rerrin

12:00hrs          Launch of Island BioBlitz 2016 – Bere Island Heritage Centre

14:00hrs          Guided bird watching walk – Niall Tierney – Meet at Murphy’s Shop, Rerrin

21:00hrs       Dusk chorus walk – Niall Tierney – Meet at Murphy’s Shop, Rerrin

Evening           Music with Michael Harrington & Co. – Bere Island Heritage Centre


Sunday 12th June

05:00hrs           Dawn chorus walk – Niall Tierney – Meet at Murphy’s Shop, Rerrin

09:00 hrs         Island BioBlitz 2016 - surveying– various locations

12:00hrs          Island BioBlitz 2016 - finishes

12:30hrs          Island BioBlitz 2016 - winners announced


getting there

There are 2 ferries servicing Bere Island.

location map


More about bere island

The undulating landscape of Bere Island is typical of the mountainous character of the beautiful Beara Peninsula. The southern side of the island rises dramatically from the sea - reaching a dizzying 270m at Knockanallig - while the northern side sweeps gently down to a rocky shoreline.

The empty beaches, abundant hedgerows and untamed stretches of peaty grasslands provide perfect habitats for a whole plethora of birds - including Meadow Pipits, Curlews, Kittiwakes and Puffins. The waters surrounding the island are also rich in marine life - with Whales, Basking Sharks, Bottle-nose and Common Dolphins all spotted around the island.

Due to its strategic location, Bere Island has a very interesting heritage - the island is rich in archaeological sites dating from the Bronze Age through to Medieval times, including ring forts, standing stones, wedge tombs and ancient burial sites. The island also has a rich military history dating from the C18th up to the present day. Martello towers, a signal tower, a military barracks and military fortification are still prominent features of the landscape.

If people sat outside and looked at the stars each night, I’ll bet they’d live a lot differently.
— Bill Watterson