A small port with traditional shops, pubs, restaurants and a market square, Portaferry is located near the southern tip of the Ards Peninsula, at the narrow entrance to Strangford Lough.  

Once a significant port, it was home to a number of maritime related industries such as rope making, ship building and ship salvage. 

Today Portaferry is an attractive seaside town with a population of around 2,750. It is home to Exploris, the Northern Ireland Aquarium, and is rich in architectural heritage and traditional charm. Other local attractions include the National Trust Properties at Mount Stewart and Castleward, the Wildfowl and Wetland Centre at Castle Espie, St Patrick’s heritage at Downpatrick and a variety of local walks and places of natural beauty. We can help you arrange a wide range of educational and recreational activities on and off the Lough.

              © Copyright  Wilson Adams  and licensed for reuse under this  Creative Commons Licence

              © Copyright Wilson Adams and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence


Strangford Lough is internationally recognized for its scenic beauty and biodiversity. It is an EU Special Area of Conservation and one of only three Marine Nature Reserves in the British Isles. Increasingly it is becoming known for its unique wildlife and as a centre for research into the marine environment and tidal energy.