There are outstanding locations for snorkeling or diving. Some are even close to the shore and not a boat necessary. Share special places you know and describe what to expect.
Ir's a year-round destination for diving. The main season starts in April and lasts until October/November with its peak in summer.
Best with water temperatures around 28 degrees and even more from June to September. October and November are a little bit cooler, therefore, less busy. Strong winds can occur during autumn, and it can be chilly.
The biggest chance for spotting big fishes from September to November when they migrate from the south to the north with colder ocean currents.
Spring, Summer and Autumn
The small Lundy Island - just 5 km / 3 miles long - is very popular for daytrippers during spring and summer. The island is famous for birding, especially the cute puffins. Find more details below. Regarding the weather May to September are the most pleasant months although rain, drizzle, and mist occur throughout the year. It's pretty often unpredictable with very challenging weather conditions. June is the peak for the flowering season. The ferry MS Oldenburg departs from Bideford and Ilfracombe depending on the tide times and takes less than two hours. It's the same for the return ferry trip. Occasionally you arrive at the other port, but a shuttle will bring you back to the car.
The season on the island starts end of March and ends end of October if travelling by ferry. The island is accessible by helicopter from November to April if you stay in one of the 23 cottages of Lundy. A small number of puffins can be seen in the breeding season. The best months to spot puffins are April to July/early August. However, sightings outside of this period are possible but rare.
The ferry ride takes less than 2 hours. This makes the island even more popular. People already queue an hour before departure to get a seat. However, you won't find massive crowds on Lundy Island. But still, it's advisable to book the ferry ticket in advance, especially during the weekend and summer holidays. Same for the 23 cottages and the campground. If possible come mid-week when visiting in July or August.
Ferry (MS Oldenburg) and Accommodations
- For 'ferry' booking, you can either give them a call or write them an email: Ferry Booking. Find the timetable here: Ferry Timetable (departing either from Bideford or Ilfracombe)
- For booking one of the 23 available cottages on the island: Cottage Booking (select 'Lundy' as the region)
- Whether you're staying for a day trip or longer on the island, it's a must to spend some time in either Bideford or Ilfracombe. Why? The ferry departs directly from both beautiful towns. Book your stay via booking.com as they offer the best rates and top-notch service: Bideford Hotels or Ilfracombe Hotels (Tip: Bookmark both links in case you're not booking right now. It will save you time and money)
Diving at Lundy
It's also a top diving destination in the UK; located in the Bristol Channel. The sea around Lundy is the first Marine Nature Reserve in England. Best time for diving and snorkeling during summer due to warmer sea temps. The diving season starts end of April and lasts until the end of September with good visibility. There are more than hundred shipwrecks around Lundy which makes it even more exciting. Due to strong tidal currents, it’s only for experienced divers recommended. A bonus curious grey seals may follow you. Dive Sites
Lundy is one of the largest seabird breeding colonies in South West England.
- Usually, puffins arrive between mid to end of March on Lundy Island for breeding. Puffins are leaving the island in August at the latest. As Lundy Island is rat free now (2019), you can expect a higher number of these gorgeous birds. There is a colony at Jenny's Cove, and even during rat eradication, the pufflings and all other chicks were save there. However, usually you can obserbe them in distance only. Bring a binocular and/or a zoom camera.
- Seabird breeding colony (guillemot, razorbill, max shearwater, shag, and different gulls) can be spotted from the end of March until September.
- Migratory birds make a stop on the island from March to June and August to November.
Lundy Island Puffin Calendar
May to October, with a great start in May when a mass of cuttle fish enter the estuary to spawn
Valle Verzasca is a beautiful valley and impressive throughout the year. If you like to come here for swimming, diving or snorkeling the season starts in May until October. The mountain river is pretty cold and a wetsuit is necessary to stay in the river for a while. The water temp is more bearable in August/ September. Best light from 10 a.m. until 2 p.m. If you arrive afterward the rock garden is less impressive without any sunshine into the river.
Peak season and utterly crowded in July and August. Our preferred month is September, fewer crowds and less cold. Avoid the crowds at weekends.
Check the weather forecast first; sometimes flood waves can happen. Weather Forecast
Best time during the dry season from November to April, but this time is also the peak season. Shoulder season May and June is worth a try and less crowded. Showers may occur, more often in the night or at the morning.