The Lough Erne Canoe Trail is one of the most popular canoe trails in Northern Ireland because it is suitable for such a wide
range of abilities. As with all canoe trails in Northern Ireland, access to the water is free and no licence is required.
The maze of bays, narrow channels of slow moving water and innumerable islands and peninsulas in Upper Lough Erne
offer a superb venue for families or those embarking on their first canoe trip.
Lower Lough Erne, north of Rossigh, is known by locals as the ‘broad lough’ and can become very rough in strong winds, so
this is an area best left to experts.
The Erne System flows from south to north, that is, from Upper Lough Erne to Lower Lough Erne. The flow is insignificant on the lough sections where wind direction is a much more important consideration and therefore this should not impact on your decision of which direction to travel.
There is a small flow along the River Erne section through Enniskillen. It is possible to paddle ‘upstream’ most of the year, however flow can become significant during periods of high rainfall so it is wise to check conditions in advance. The Arney River flows west to east from Lough MacNean Lower to Upper Lough Erne and is faster flowing Grade 1 water.
The islands and quiet shores of Lough Erne are ideal for wild camping, making it perfect for those seeking a true wilderness experience. Wildlife highlights include kingfishers, otters and grey herons whilst numerous historic lough-side features such as the iconic Devenish Tower, Crom Estate and Enniskillen Castle are well worth a visit.
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