Old Post Box
Favorite thing: On Arran's string road which runs from near Brodick to the village of Blackwaterfoot there is a lovely old post box. It is made of stone and is quite an unusual shape. It has lots of different symbols carved into its stones.
- Historical Travel
Favorite thing: I was thrilled at the variety of wildlife we saw whilst on Arran.
We often sat and watched birds of prey, buzzards, I think, fairly close to us as they were calling to each other. I have never seen a bird of prey land before and this we saw numerous times in both fields and on rocks. Quite eciting.
Herons were prolific, particularly at Lochranza where we noted a heronry. At Sannox we had a heron a few feet away from us across the river who sat for over four hours, barely moving.
I was SO excited on one of my walks when I spotted a red squirrel on the ground, scurrying to and fro in front of me before disappearing in the undergrowth. On the same walk I spotted red deer.
I suppose for me, the disappointing part in the wildlife sightings was only seeing the odd seal and no other aquatic creatures. Normally on our Scottish holidays seals are frequent visitors.
Fondest memory: Landscapes, nature and wildlife.
- Whale Watching
Iorsa Water at Dougarie.
Favorite thing: Iorsa Water flows into the sea close to Dougarie Lodge, just north of Machrie. It is a deep river with steep sides as it reaches the sea. Fishing is private, permits possibly from the Lodge. We saw lots of fish jumping and we watched a couple of men try fishing from the sea where the river enters it, with no luck.
The old boathouse, across the river, can be reached by stepping stones or through a gate on the road. I read that it serves as a cafe at times but it was pretty shut up during our visit.This boathouse must have a history to it as it seemed peculiar that it had two large double doors at the seaward side, but absolutely no access to the water from them. There is a long walkway to the sea but I just couldn't work out how the boats would be launched.
I attempted a walk from just north of Dougarie Lodge, along the river which leads to Loch Iorsa. The going was initially hard as it involved climbing over huge rocks at the top of a steep path. Eventually this path would lead onto a track from the lodge and end up at the loch.It was too much like hard work for me on a very hot afternoon so I returned to the more leisurely activity of sunbathing and reading!
Fondest memory: Lazing a hot, sunny day away simply watching the seabirds squabble and listening to the sounds of the sea and river.
To the left of the river,as the tide recedes, a pleasant sandy beach is revealed. it was so warm I spent ages paddling back and forth from one end to the other. Under my feet baby flat fish shot out, quite fascinating.
- Hiking and Walking
Favorite thing: We visited Lochranza twice, loving the place.
This one time herring port has a remote, small island feel, more like the Highlands than Ayrshire and really is lovely.
The village sprawls round both sides of Loch Ranza sea loch, with the port located on the western side. On the eastern shore is a road with beautiful houses and gardens that leads to Newton's Point.Lochranza's backdrop is a range of towering mountains, creating a rather hemmed in feel to the village but very picturesque at the same time.
Arran's first legal distillery opened here and makes the Arran single malt.A visitor centre enables you to view the goings on here.
A regular summer visitor to Lochranza is the paddle steamer Waverley.
On our first visit we went to watch the island's alternative ferry service leave for Kintyre on the Argyll mainland and then parked up by the ruined castle for a wander round.The second visit involved a walk around the coast.
The castle sits prominently on a spit of grassy land and makes for marvellous photographs, particularly on a sunny day.The ruins you see today are mainly 16thc.. Robert the Bruce is said to have landed in Lochranza in 1306 from Ireland and the castle has family connections. (Where hasn't that man ended up???)
Fondest memory: I just loved the views from the castle and the reflections of the boats and houses on the loch. I always love seeing sheep on a shore line and Lochranza didn't disappoint me.
- Hiking and Walking
- Sailing and Boating
- Castles and Palaces
Favorite thing: As this was the first place we stayed on Arran, I have very fond memories of it.
Sannox has a little jetty, complete with painted concrete sheep looking out to sea, and an even tinier natural harbour.
There is a hotel with a restaurant, Corrie golf club and Sannox Cricket Club. I followed the shouting and applause one day and found a cricket match on, situated on a plateau below Goat Fell. I know golf clubs are prone to be in spectacular locations (as is the one at Sannox) but what a setting for a game of cricket!!
The walk up Glen Sannox starts here, taking in a cemetery and some old mine workings and ruins before proceeding further and more steeply up towards Goat Fell. This is where I spotted a red squirrel and later, red deer.
Folks who are eating at the restaurant tend to stop awhile and wander along the beach and riverside here.
- Mountain Climbing
Favorite thing: It is quite common as you travel around Arran to see seals basking on the rocks or playing in the waves.
In the little village of Corrie there is even a very cute statue of a basking seal out in the water.
- Family Travel
Isle of Arran
Favorite thing: See the Isle of Arran, it is Scotland in small version, everything is there - mountains, beaches, sheeps, seals, beautiful nature and nice people.
The way you can get there is - buy a train ticket inclusive ferry ticket at Glasgow Central and go by train to Ardrossan Harbour and there you get on the ferry operated by Caledonian MacBrayne Ltd. (0 1475 650 100), after an hour you will be at Brodick the main city of the Isle. If you are going there in winter like me, so be carreful, because the last ferry going back to mainland is going so about 1640 but in summer so about 1920. First ferry going to the Isle is going at 0945 but on sundays only in summer, in winter at 1230. The whole return ticket costs about 20 pounds. When you are there you can stay at Brodick and visit the castle and surroundings or you can buy a day bus ticket and make a bus trip around the whole Island, the bus drivers are very friendly and if it is possible (because the streets are very narrow) they make a stop only for you that you can take a picture.
So, have fun on the Isle of Arran!
For more Pictures visit my travelogue!
Fondest memory: My friends I have been there with and I have made there.
Favorite thing: Arran is home to large herds of wild deer. We were delighted to pass a golf course covered in them. They seemed really tame and totally at ease in their surroundings.
- Family Travel
Family of Swans
Favorite thing: This lovely family of swans swam right up to us. I was surprised to see such a large number of cygnets. They really brightened our day.
- Family Travel
Favorite thing: Arran is a wonderful place for hiking. These are some photos from one of the walks we took. As with all of Scotland beware sudden changes in the weather and bring warm clothing with you.
- Hiking and Walking
Beaches and Coastline
Favorite thing: Arran has some lovely beaches and beautiful coastline. We braved swimming in Whiting Bay once, but I must admit the water was absolutely freezing even after a spell of lovely hot summer weather.
Favorite thing: There are 2 roads that cut across Arran...the String Road and the Ross Road....both are long and steep but well worth the climb to see the views.