The Celtic Seas include the English Channel, the Irish Sea, the Celtic Sea and the waters west of the UK and Ireland.
This very windy stretch of water has long been a busy shipping area, with most merchant ships travelling east-west. The north-south routes connect the English, Irish and French coasts. Fishing activity is very intense in the Celtic Seas – with small-scale fishing in the south and deep-sea fishing in the north. Over the past 20 years, aquaculture (fish and sea-food farms) has taken off more strongly and diversified more than in other areas. In coastal areas, there is an active and varied tourist industry.