KINTYRE - SCOTLAND’S ONLY “MAINLAND ISLAND”
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Activities

Argyll is known as one of Europe’s greatest walking areas, and Kintyre has some of Argyll’s best walks to offer, from gentle strolls accessible by car, to some rather more rigourous stretches in outstanding scenery. The “Kintyre Way”, opened 2006, is a long distance walking route of 140km (87 miles) approximately, starting in Tarbert and finishing at Southend.

There are excellent forest walks, several for example around the Carradale district, with perfect picnic spots, looking across the uplands of the spine of Kintyre and across the Kilbrannan Sound towards Arran and beyond; these are also popular for Cyclists, who will appreciate the waymarked “SUSTRANS” cycle route and facilities from Campbeltown to Claonaig, while a trip to Gigha is best enjoyed with a bicycle to reach all of the quiet corners of “God”s Island. From dramatic Beinn Ghuilean, overlooking Campbeltown Loch, and easily accesible from the town, you can look across the Clyde towards Arran and Ayrshire, or out into the Atlantic to Islay and Jura.

Other walks include numerous coastal paths and beaches, such as the Gauldrons at Machrihanish, from where one can walk past the peak of Cnoy Moy and beautiful bays such as the “Inans”, via the Wildlife Reserve of Largiebaan all the way to the Mull of Kintyre. Accessible at Low Tide, after checking tide times with the Visitor Information Centre, is Davaar Island, with its unusual cave painting of the crucifixion. It is a memorable and disturbing vision.

Kintyre is well blessed with exceptional beaches, fine clean sand in numerous locations, but the long stretches at Westport, Southend and Tayinloan are perhaps the most popular for Watersports; Surfing and Windsurfing is especially popular at Westport, one of Scotland’s best beaches for these activities, scene of competitions, yet beautifully unspoilt. There are both pontoons and moorings around Kintyre, and large numbers of yachts will be seen throughout the season enjoying Europe’s finest sailing waters, but especially during the Tarbert Series in May.

There is a lively Music and Cultural scene, with several festivals during the year in various locations, which win international acclaim, both for their musical content, and their warm, friendly atmosphere. The Visitor Information Centres will always be pleased to advise on dates and venues for all of these activities. Machrihanish Golf Club, Kintyre

Golfers will especially enjoy Kintyre for its fine choice of courses, five unique and diverse ones to choose from, but all very reasonably priced, and delightfully uncrowded. Machrihanish Golf Club, a classic links course, was described as far back as 1886, in a book by Alfred Barnard, as “...a golfing ground, said to be the best and most extensive in Scotland”.

Today’s golfers will not be disappointed, and both 18 and 9-hole courses are offered. Dunaverty Golf Club, another 18-hole course, is slightly shorter, but makes a very pleasant alternative, perhaps sligthly less challenging than its bigger neighbour. 9-hole courses at Tarbert, Carradale and on Gigha offer further variety, where keen golfer or beginner will enjoy their game.