A weekend in Argyll - Things to do
There is certainly no shortage of things to see and do throughout North Argyll and a weekend here is to be highly recommended.
The landscape and atmosphere of North Argyll and indeed Argyll as a whole is dominated by the dramatic landscape and coastline forming many islands and fiord like sea lochs. This results in it being arguably the most picturesque region in Scotland, especially with the benefit of its lush vegetation thanks to the mild gulf stream.
So needless to say, a drive or cycle round the area is highly recommended and the following areas are at the top of the list.
This small hamlet at the north end of the Crinan Canal lies in a spectacularly beautiful spot. One and a half hours drive south west from Port Appin brings you to this hamlet at the end of one of the most beautifully situated canals in the UK. The canal is not that long so could be walked or perhaps cycled very easily. Just to the north of Crinan, and on route, lies the valley of Kilmartin, another beautiful area well known for its very old burial chambers.
The island of Mull lies in the north west corner of Argyll and is one of the largest islands on the west coast of Scotland. It also has a lot to offer such that it should be high on anyone’s list of islands to bag, dare I say it, higher than some other large west coast islands. You will need to get the ferry from Oban but this is only 35 minutes from Port Appin and the crossing is 45 minutes affording beautiful views across to
Duart Castle sitting on its own dramatic peninsula. Duart Castle is well worth a visit once you land on Mull. Further south, on the western tip of Mull lies the separate island of Iona which is a ‘must’ visit for its sandy beaches and perfectly formed little abbey where Christianity first came over to Scotland from Ireland thanks to St Columbus. In the north east of Mull lies the principal town of Tobermory which has a lovely little harbour surrounded by brightly coloured buildings housing some delightful shops offering typically celtic souvenirs. It also boasts a whisky distillery and a very good fish restaurant above the ferry terminal. In addition, there is beautiful scenery everywhere but especially all the way down the west coast.
Inverary is another picturesque town worth a visit. It lies in a superb position on Loch Fyne and in addition to its interesting architecture, boasts Inverary Castle, home to the Duke of Argyll and open to the public in season, Inverary Jail and, just outside the town, the original Loch Fyne Oyster Bar. The drive there takes one and a half hours and is full of great views, particularly as you drive along the side of Loch Awe with the atmospheric Kilchurn Castle lying on its island near one end.
Also, all along the southern shore of Loch Linnhe between Ledaig and Duror a stunning cycle path has been created from a disused railway line. You can take a leisurely cycle along here, occasionally crossing the road, with beautiful views across the loch – well worth hiring a bike for. Port Apoin is perfectly positioned in the middle of this path