The picturesque, shallow and sandy stretch of beach at Murvagh extends for two kilometres (1.3 miles) along Donegal Bay. Located near the village of Laghey, south of Donegal town, Murvagh is noted for its relatively warm water, making it exceptionally comfortable for dipping toes in the summer. It is one of many Irish beaches to have been awarded a blue flag by the EU, in recognition of its clean, clear, safe waters.
Paddling and Swimming
Murvagh's bathing area is shallow; only at high tide is it deep enough for adult swimmers. The water is however perfect for paddling, and parents can relax while their children swim in relative safety. The beach's shallowness is also responsible for its favourable water temperature -- when the tide moves in, it has to cross a kilometre (0.6 miles) of warm sand.
During the summer months of June, July and August, a lifeguard is present at the beach during daytime hours.
Many watersports are increasingly enjoyed at Murvagh. In the winter, locals exercise their horses along the shore, while trail bike riders enjoy the challenges of the dunes.
There is a large dune area near the beach, extending back to Murvagh forest and its widely scattered picnic areas. These dunes have been designated a special area of conservation by the state, which seeks to protect them from coastal erosion.
Murvagh Beach. Image: John Garghan