Passage East is a small, scenic fishing village, centred around two interlinking open squares. Situated in a pretty valley, with steep, sloping hills, the village looks out into the estuary of two rivers - the Barrow and the Suir. Located 12km / 7.5 miles from Waterford City, Passage East owes its name to its ancient and ongoing role as a ferry port that links to Ballyhack, County Wexford, on the eastern site of the estuary. The village has three main quays: Boathouse Quay Hackett's Quay and Middle Quay.
The original medieval settlement at Passage East centred on a fort designed to defend the waterways approaching Waterford. The town's most historic moment, however, is the prominent role it played during the origin of Ireland's troubled history with Britain. In 1170, as part of the Norman invasion of Ireland, Richard de Clare --- better known as Strongbow --- landed in Passage East, with an expeditionary force of 200 knights and 1,000 armoured men. From here, he went on to capture the city of Waterford. Within a year, King Henry arrived in Waterford -- the first King of England to arrive on Irish soil.
Car and Passenger Ferry
Amateur video of ferry to Passage East, inter-spliced with, um, goats A car ferry operates between Passage East and the village of Ballyhack. The small vessel (holding about 28 cars) saves motorists almost an hour in driving time between County Waterford and County Wexford. The scenic trip takes about 10 minutes, and the ferry runs continuously during peak months. Check the official site for times and fares. Official Site: Passage East Ferry Company
BeachPassage East has a long, sandy beach that stretches around 5km / 3miles south to the village of Woodstown. When the tide is out, visitors can walk the length of the beach, which offers superb views across the estuary towards Duncannon in County Wexford.
Message in a BottleIn 2012, local 10-year old boy Oisín Millea made international news headlines when, washed up on Passage East beach, he found a bottle containing a note. The message, written in French, had been sent by from the Grande Vallee area of Quebec by two Canadian girls, eight years previously, and had travelled 4,000km across the ocean.
FishingPassage East beach is also a popular spot for shore angling. Due to its location at the muddy mouth of the estuary, both saltwater and freshwater specimens are found here, including:
Bait and other supplies can be both in local fishing tackle in Waterford City. Important: a licence is not required for coarse fishing --- basically, fishing with a rod and line --- in Ireland. Anglers must familiarise themselves with the Irish Fishing Regulations in relation to other types of fishing, practices and specific types of fish. Salmon and sea trout fishing are prohibited.
Passage East, by Van Corey