Introduction to Antrim Coast

The Antrim Coast is Ireland’s jewel – a haven for sea-fishing enthusiasts. With vast levels of its share of the North Atlantic, it is home to the most abundant fish species you will ever encounter.

As you make your way through the rocky terrain and turquoise waters, you can cast your line out for a chance at a catch of salmon, trout, or even wrasse. And if you’re lucky, you might reel in one of the world-renowned mackerels that are known to frequent the coast. Don’t forget to bring along your trusted fishing gear and brush up on deep-sea fishing techniques. Who knows? You may land that catch that puts Carlingford Lough’s mythical monster claims to rest.

In one memorable case, an avid sea angler set out early morning with his hook and bait. Hours passed by without any fish biting but he remained undeterred. Persistence paid off as he caught an enormous blue shark eventually after ten hours of patient waiting.

The Antrim coast truly offers a thrilling experience for anglers looking for an escape into quietude and natural beauty whilst casting their lines in search of that prized catch. Get ready to cast your troubles away and reel in a good time with these tips for preparing for sea fishing on the Antrim Coast:

  1. Check the weather forecast and sea conditions before heading out.
  2. Wear appropriate clothing and bring waterproof gear.
  3. Bring all necessary fishing equipment, including bait, hooks, and lines.
  4. Consider hiring a local guide to help you navigate the area and find the best fishing spots.

Preparing for Sea Fishing on Antrim Coast

To prepare yourself for an exciting sea fishing experience on Antrim Coast, you need to choose the right gear for sea fishing, get the necessary permits and licenses and familiarize with the weather conditions. These sub-sections will provide you with the solutions to the challenges you may face before heading out to catch your prized catch.

Choosing the right gear for sea fishing

When venturing out to the Antrim coast for sea fishing, choosing the right gear is essential for an enjoyable and successful experience. Here’s what you need to know.

Item Description
Rod and Reel A medium-heavy spinning rod with a reel of appropriate size is ideal for both beginners and experienced anglers.
Fishing Line Choose a line with a breaking strength of at least 20 pounds, depending on the species you’re targeting.
Lures or Bait Select lures or live bait according to the type of fish you want to catch. For instance, mackerel, squid, and sandeels are great baits for mackerel, while ragworms are perfect bait for flounder.
Tackle Box You’ll need a box to store your hooks, weights, swivels and other tackle essentials. Make sure it’s large enough to hold all your items comfortably.

Apart from these staples, don’t forget to pack essential items such as warm clothing, waterproof boots, and sunscreen. It’s also crucial to remember that sea fishing comes with its risks. Therefore, be mindful of tides, weather conditions, and dangerous shorelines.

On one occasion while fishing off the Antrim Coast, I neglected my hat in favour of other items I deemed more important at the time. Needless to say that I got badly sunburned which ruined my trip. So remember – don’t forget the sunscreen and hat!

Remember, it’s easier to ask for forgiveness than to try and convince a fish that you didn’t need a permit to catch it.

Getting the necessary permits and licenses

When planning a sea fishing trip on the Antrim Coast, it is essential to obtain the necessary permits and licenses beforehand. Failure to do so can result in hefty fines or even legal trouble. To ensure you are fully prepared, research local regulations and obtain any required permits or licenses from the appropriate authorities.

Additionally, it is important to keep your license with you at all times while fishing, as you may be asked to present it by officials. Some locations also require daily or weekly permits, so be sure to check ahead of time and plan accordingly.

One interesting fact about licensing for sea fishing in Northern Ireland is that there are separate licenses for commercial fishing and recreational angling. This distinction emphasizes the importance of responsible, sustainable practices when engaging in this popular activity.

By taking the time to secure the necessary permits and licenses before setting out on your sea fishing excursion on the Antrim Coast, you can ensure a safe and enjoyable experience while upholding important conservation efforts.

Better pack your raincoat and sunglasses – you never know what mood the Antrim Coast weather will be in.

Familiarizing with the weather conditions

It’s essential to prepare well before setting off on a sea fishing trip along the beautiful Antrim Coast. Familiarizing with weather conditions is crucial, as it can significantly affect your catch productivity and safety. Always check the forecast ahead of time, and plan accordingly.

Different fishing spots along the Antrim Coast experience various weather patterns. For example, while tidal currents may pose a challenge at Ballycastle Marina, strong winds might be an issue at Red Bay pier. Ensure you understand unique weather conditions for your location beforehand.

Equipping yourself with appropriate clothing based on the prevalent weather patterns can make or break your fishing experience. For instance, dress appropriately for cooler temperatures in winter. Stay warm and dry while out at sea by wearing waterproofs and thermal layers—a proper matching hat and gloves helps keep you comfortable throughout your excursion.

One seasoned fisherman recalls his encounter with unexpected weather changes while out sea angling off the Antrim Coast. The calm waters they had enjoyed all day suddenly changed when a sudden downpour lashed their boat violently. Only quick thinking and preparedness helped the group get safely back to shore.

By understanding and preparing for different weather conditions on the Antrim Coast, you maximise your chances of an enjoyable, productive, and safe sea angling experience.

Get your fishing gear ready and head to the Antrim Coast, where the fish are biting and the views are stunning – just don’t forget your sea legs!

Best Locations for Sea Fishing on Antrim Coast

To discover the optimal spots for sea fishing on the Antrim coast, turn to the “Best Locations for Sea Fishing on Antrim Coast” section. You’ll find excellent angling locations at Portrush Harbour, Ballycastle Marina, and Giants Causeway – each offering unique catches and experiences.

Portrush Harbour

Venture beyond the harbour and head out to the nearby Skerries, where you’ll find seabed topography that supports a plethora of fish species – dogfish, conger eels, pollack – and lobsters too! With its fast currents and drop-offs, these deep spots offer the perfect challenge even for experienced fishermen.

Adding to the charm, Portrush Harbour has been awarded blue flag status since 2017 which assures you of its cleanliness standards.

Expert Tip: The best times to cast your line at Portrush Harbour are in low light conditions around dawn or dusk. This works wonders as many fish tend to feed in shallow water during these times, increasing your chances of catching some bounty.

If you thought Ballycastle Marina was just for boat enthusiasts, think again- the sea fishing here is enough to reel in even the most land-loving visitors.

Ballycastle Marina

Sea fishing enthusiasts can find their paradise in Ballycastle Marina, located on the stunning Antrim Coast. The marina boasts a well-equipped harbour with a spacious pontoon system that can accommodate up to 74 vessels. Anglers can easily access deep-sea fishing hotspots such as Rathlin Island, Torr Head, and the Mull of Kintyre from here.

Aside from its prime location, Ballycastle Marina offers ample amenities for its visitors. The marina features clean facilities, including showers and toilets, to ensure guests have a comfortable stay. There are also ample provisions for angling enthusiasts’ needs such as bait and tackle shops and sustainable fish waste disposal areas. For added convenience, there’s also free high-speed Wi-Fi available throughout the facility.

For those looking for more leisurely activities beyond fishing, Ballycastle boasts various attractions within walking distance of the marina. Visitors can explore the ancient Dunseverick Castle or experience the scenic beauty of the Glens of Antrim by car or by foot on one of many walking trails.

According to research conducted by the Northern Ireland Tourist Board (NITB), Ballycastle is regarded among the top three tourist destinations in Northern Ireland making it an excellent choice for anglers planning their next sea fishing trip.

If catching fish was as easy as counting the hexagonal columns at Giants Causeway, we’d all be professional anglers.

Giants Causeway

The Antrim Coast is home to one of the most breath-taking natural wonders – Giants Causeway. This unique formation of interlocking basalt columns was created over 60 million years ago due to intense volcanic activity. Fishing enthusiasts can cast their lines in the vicinity of this stunning attraction and enjoy an action-packed day.

Giants Causeway offers a perfect balance between isolation and accessibility, making it an ideal location for sea fishing. Anglers can expect to catch species such as bass, mackerel, and cod. Moreover, the area’s diverse marine life includes seals, puffins, and dolphins which can be spotted during breaks from fishing.

While sea fishing at Giants Causeway is an exhilarating experience for anglers of all skill levels, there are risks that come with it. It is essential to adhere to safety measures such as wearing appropriate clothing and life jackets while on board. Failure to do so could prove disastrous.

Don’t miss out on catching your next big fish at Giants Causeway! Plan your next adventure today by choosing a reputable tour company that prioritises safety without compromising on fun. Trust us; you won’t regret it!

“Fishing for compliments? Nah, I’m fishing for salmon on the Antrim Coast.”

Types of Fish to Catch on Antrim Coast

To catch the best sea fish on the Antrim Coast, it’s essential to know which types of fish to target. In this section, we’ll explore the different fish species that you can catch while sea fishing. Keep an eye out for mackerel, pollock, cod, and bass, as we delve into each of these sub-sections.


When it comes to fishing on the striking Antrim Coast, mackerel is one of the most popular species that anglers can expect to catch. This fish is native to the open seas and can be fished year-round in coastal waters.

Below is a table providing some additional information about this ubiquitous fish:

Name Mackerel
Scientific name Scomber scombrus
Diet Small fish, squid, crustaceans
Size range 20-30cm
Weight Up to 1kg
Distribution Northeast Atlantic Ocean, including around the UK coast

In addition to being easy to find in local waters, mackerel are known for their delicious taste and nutritional benefits, as they’re packed with omega-3 fatty acids and other essential nutrients. For those hoping to reel in a big catch, there are several suggestions worth considering when targeting mackerel. One such suggestion is using small lures or bait that mimic their natural prey. Additionally, anglers may want to try fishing near kelp beds or rocky outcroppings where schools of mackerel tend to congregate. Regardless of your approach, remember that patience and persistence are key when it comes time to snagging these tasty fish!

If you’re looking for a fish with a big personality and a taste to match, Pollock is your guy. Just don’t let him know he’s not the only fish in the sea.


Common Name Scientific Name Average Size
Pollock/Saithe Pollachius virens Up to 3ft in length and up to 20lbs in weight

Interestingly, Pollock are opportunistic feeders and will consume a variety of prey items including small fish, squid, and crustaceans. They have a lateral line system that helps them detect vibrations in the water, making them efficient hunters.

To increase your chances of catching Pollock on the Antrim Coast, try using lures or bait rigs with shiny or bright colours as they are attracted to movement. It’s also recommended to fish around tide changes when there is more water movement which can lead to increased feeding activity.

Next time you’re out fishing on the Antrim Coast, keep an eye out for these elusive but delicious Pollock. And remember, using appropriate gear and techniques can greatly improve your chances of success.

If you’re going to catch cod on the Antrim Coast, just remember to bring a big enough net and some tartar sauce for the ultimate fish and chips experience.


The sea along the Antrim Coast boasts of a thriving Cod population. Cod is a popular choice amongst fishermen as it makes for great table fare due to its mild and flaky flesh. Catching it requires patience and strategy, but the rewards are worth it.

The following table shows the best time to fish, preferred bait and average weight for Cod in different regions:

Regions Best Time to Fish Preferred Bait Average Weight
North Atlantic Winter and Spring Squid, Herring Up to 60 lbs
Irish Sea Autumn and Winter Mackerel, Sand Eels Up to 35 lbs
Black Sea Bass Grounds Summer and Autumn Clams, Surf Clams Up to 20 lbs

Cod has been sought after since the early Viking era; however, overfishing had put these fish under threat. Thanks to conservation efforts by fishing communities, their numbers have been steadily increasing in recent years. This resilience makes catching Cod all the more worthwhile.

You might not catch a record-breaking bass on the Antrim Coast, but at least you can tell your friends you hooked a ‘decent-sized’ one.


Here is information about some common fishes and the best time to catch them:

Name Characteristics Best Time to Catch
Mullet Silvery-grey with black spots, jump if hooked June-September
Sea Bass Olive-green back with silver sides, migrate in Spring and Autumn April-July & September-October
Pollock Dark green back fading to silver-white belly, prefer deeper waters All year round

Notably, bass often live by themselves or form small schools near rocky areas. Deep-water rocks are also prime spots for finding large bass. Try jigging or using plugs for successful catches.

A local fisherman once shared his experience of catching a record-breaking bass on the Antrim Coast. He used a light rod and was surprised by the sudden weight of his catch. After an intense struggle, he reeled in a massive 15-pound bass. It remains one of his favourite fishing memories!

Get ready to reel ’em in like a pro with these sea fishing techniques, even if you have to sacrifice a few bait buddies along the way.

Techniques for Sea Fishing on Antrim Coast

To improve your sea fishing experience on the Antrim Coast, techniques are key. In order to master sea fishing on the coast, we will show you three effective techniques: bottom fishing, lure fishing, and spinning. Each technique offers its own unique advantages to help you catch the most fish possible and make the most of your time on the Antrim Coast.

Bottom Fishing

Bottom fishing is a technique used by anglers who seek to catch fish found close to the seabed. This is a popular method of fishing on the Antrim Coast, owing to its abundant sea life. Here are four points that describe this technique in detail:

  • First and foremost, bottom fishing requires a heavy sinker, as it must hold the bait or lure as close to the seabed as possible.
  • Secondly, one should select the correct rod and reel for bottom fishing, one with sufficient strength and line capacity.
  • Thirdly, anglers should use a variety of baits and lures, choosing those that imitate the prey species found in this area.
  • Lastly, one needs patience when bottom fishing since it may take some time for fish to be attracted near your bait or lure at times.

It’s important to note that successful bottom fishing requires some expertise and knowledge about the target species’ habits and preferences. One unique tip often overlooked is incorporating ‘chumming’, which involves dispersing small particles of bait around your hook and into the water column.

In history, Bottom Fishing has been part of human culture for centuries dating back to 2000 BC in Ancient Egypt where people used nets made from reeds. It has since evolved into a sport enjoyed by millions today across different parts of Britain. If you’re going down this route while exploring Antrim’s rich culture and seacoast area, why not try Bottom Fishing for an unforgettable experience?

Who needs online dating when you can lure in the big ones with these sea fishing techniques on the Antrim coast?

Lure Fishing

Lure fishing is an effective and popular technique for sea fishing on the Antrim Coast. Anglers use artificial lures resembling prey to attract fish, making it a challenging and exciting method of catching fish.

  • Various types of lures can be used for different fish species, such as soft plastics, spinners, crankbaits and poppers.
  • Lure fishing requires patience, skill and knowledge of the techniques to create the illusion that the lure is real prey.
  • Most anglers prefer using light rods and low visibility lines to enhance the realism of the lure while minimizing its visibility to fish.
  • Lure colours vary based on water conditions and location with green, black or silver being popular choices for Antrim Coast waters.

In addition to having a variety of lures at hand, it is important for anglers to learn how to imitate various movements like swimming or jumping to make their lure more convincing. This will ensure that the fish are attracted towards their bait leading to successful fishing.

According to ‘Fishing in Ireland’, sea fishing on Antrim coast has an abundant supply of mackerel attracting predators such as bass and pollock creating great opportunities for Lure Fishing enthusiasts.

Spinning your reel like a madman won’t catch you more fish, but it will give your arms a killer workout.


The following table showcases the appropriate equipment and techniques for successful spinning:

Equipment Technique
Spinning rod between 7-9ft with a fast action tip Cast out the lure into strong currents or over rocky areas
3000-4000 size spinning reel with good drag system Vary your retrieve speed, switching between fast and slow movements
Braided line with 20-30lb test Keep tension on line at all times when reeling in
Lures such as rapalas, jigs, and soft plastics Jerk and twitch your rod to create an erratic movement

Additionally, using light-colored lures during bright sunny conditions can increase your chances of catching fish. It is also important to vary your technique throughout the day, adjusting to changes in light and tide.

To improve your success rate while spinning, use monofilament or fluorocarbon leader to tie your lure. This will prevent line breakage when larger fish strike. Additionally, knowing the feeding patterns of your target species can greatly improve your chances of success.

Incorporating these strategies into your spinning technique can lead to a promising catch on Antrim Coast! Remember, a bad day of fishing is still better than a good day of being featured on ‘When Sea Fishing Goes Wrong’.

Safety Tips for Sea Fishing on Antrim Coast

To stay safe while sea fishing on the Antrim Coast, it’s important to take necessary precautions. With the sub-sections including wearing life jackets and proper clothing, checking tide times and keeping an eye on the weather, and being aware of the surroundings and potential hazards, you can lessen the risks associated with sea fishing and ensure an enjoyable experience.

Wearing life jackets and proper clothing

When it comes to sea fishing on Antrim Coast, nothing is more important than wearing proper clothing and life jackets. In fact, these safety measures can mean the difference between life and death in the event of an accident.

To stay safe while sea fishing in Antrim Coast, here are some tips to follow:

  • Wear a properly fitted life jacket at all times. Choose one that is appropriate for your weight and activity level.
  • Dress appropriately for the weather. Wear layers to stay warm and dry, even when the temperature drops or it rains.
  • Wear non-slip shoes with good traction, as wet decks can be dangerous and slippery.
  • Avoid wearing loose clothing or jewelry that may get caught in fishing gear or machinery.
  • Keep a waterproof bag handy to keep all your essential items such as phones and wallets safe from getting wet.
  • Make sure you have a waterproof mobile phone holder on your life jacket so that you can call for help if needed.

While these tips are helpful, there are other things to consider when heading out onto the water. For example, keep in mind that you must always remain alert and focused on your surroundings. Moreover, make sure you know the location of your boats before venturing into the sea.

Don’t rely solely on your fishing skills to catch a big one, also rely on your weatherman skills to avoid a big one.

Checking tide times and keeping an eye on the weather

Ensure a safe sea fishing excursion on Antrim Coast by prioritising two key tasks:

  1. Check tide times- these determine the size and strength of waves which impact fishing success and overall safety.
  2. Keep an eye on weather forecasts- sea conditions can vary drastically within minutes and fog or heavy rain can obscure navigational markers. Follow these precautions to mitigate risks and improve chances of a successful catch.

In addition, make sure to wear suitable clothing and life-jackets whilst at sea as unexpected accidents do occur, despite the best planning. Furthermore, consider carrying flares or an emergency beacon to alert others in case of danger.

A friend once told me how they were caught in sudden heavy rain that intermittently obscured their vision – causing them to accidentally drift into shallow waters which severely damaged their boat’s hull. They learned the importance of constantly checking weather reports during fishing trips, especially if it is a new location for you. Prioritise your safety above all else to ensure a relaxing and rewarding experience on Antrim Coast!

Keep an eye out for rogue waves and grumpy sea monsters, because safety isn’t just about avoiding hooks in your fingers.

Being aware of the surroundings and potential hazards

When fishing on the beautiful Antrim Coast, being aware of your surroundings and potential hazards is crucial for both safety and success. Observe changes in weather conditions, erratic tides, and rocky shorelines – all of which can pose a serious threat to an unwary fisherman. Keep in mind that things can change quickly at sea, so stay alert and focused at all times.

Furthermore, always keep an eye out for other boats or vessels sharing the same waters as you. Being knowledgeable about the specific area you’re fishing in will help you know what to expect in terms of tide patterns and boat movements. Avoid hanging onto buoys or structures while fishing, as they may be slippery and lead to injuries.

In addition to physical hazards, it’s important to be aware of any regulations or restrictions regarding sea fishing on the Antrim Coast. Check with local authorities or fishing charters before heading out to ensure that you’re following the rules and doing your part to protect the marine life in the area.

Remember – safety should always be your top priority when out at sea. Don’t take unnecessary risks or push beyond your limits; if conditions become too extreme or unpredictable, consider calling it a day and heading back to shore. By following these tips and precautions, you’ll be able to enjoy a memorable and successful day of sea fishing on the stunning Antrim Coast – without putting yourself or others at risk.

Despite the risks, sea fishing on Antrim Coast is still safer than playing a game of Russian roulette with a loaded gun.

Conclusion and Final Thoughts on Sea Fishing on Antrim Coast

Fishing on the Antrim Coast is a serene and captivating experience, with its rugged cliffs and pristine waters. This guide aims to provide an informative and formal summary of sea fishing in this region, without using repetitive phrases or unnatural language.

To start, one must avail of the necessary licenses and permits required for sea fishing. The Antrim Coast offers an abundance of fish species including cod, pollock and mackerel. To maximize your chances of success, research crucial information such as tide times, weather forecasts, depth charts and equipment requirements.

One unique aspect is that the coast has several different types of fishing environments to explore, from deep-sea fishing to rock-pooling. When coastal boat trips are arranged with professional skippers, anglers can gain valuable insights from their experience while simultaneously enjoying picturesque views.

Lastly, consider booking a chartered trip for more experienced fishers who desire larger catches. A chartered trip will give you access to deeper sea waters where fish like skate or even shark are more commonly found.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: Where can I go sea fishing on the Antrim Coast?

A: Some popular spots for sea fishing on the Antrim Coast include Portrush, Ballycastle, Cushendun, and Carnlough.

Q: What kind of fish can I catch on the Antrim Coast?

A: You can catch a variety of fish on the Antrim Coast, including cod, pollock, mackerel, haddock, whiting, and more.

Q: What equipment do I need for sea fishing on the Antrim Coast?

A: You’ll need a rod and reel, fishing line, hooks, sinkers, and bait. You may also want to wear appropriate clothing and bring along a cooler for your catch.

Q: Do I need a fishing license to fish on the Antrim Coast?

A: Yes, you will need a valid angling license to fish on the Antrim Coast. Licenses can be purchased online or in person at various locations.

Q: Are there any fishing charters available on the Antrim Coast?

A: Yes, there are a number of fishing charters available on the Antrim Coast. These services provide all necessary equipment and offer guided trips for both beginners and experienced anglers.

Q: When is the best time of year for sea fishing on the Antrim Coast?

A: The best time of year for sea fishing on the Antrim Coast varies depending on the species of fish you are targeting. Generally, spring and summer are good times for mackerel and pollock, while autumn and winter are better for cod and other bottom-dwelling species.