Explore the Island of Arran
The Isle of Arran is known as Scotland in Miniature and there are many reasons for this. Arran is surrounded by water, has magnificent mountains, beautiful beaches and a stunning castle. The Isle of Arran also has delightful small villages, great cafes and restaurants. Amazingly there is a wonderful golf course overlooking the sea and two fantastic whisky distilleries. Scotland in miniature is an excellent nickname for the beautiful island because it truly has everything.
Travelling to the Island of Arran
There are two ways to reach the Isle of Arran, either the large vehicle ferry from Ardrossan to the capital of Arran - the village of Brodick. We travelled there in September and took the smaller ferry from the Mull of Kintyre to the tiny hamlet of Lochranza in the north of the island. Dolphins were playing alongside the ferry and gave all the passengers a great show.
Exploring the island by car
Arran is a great place to spend a few days or even a week because there is so much to see and do. We will help you plan your stay and our luxury transport will ease you round those country roads. https://www.visitarran.com/
One of the most famous viewpoints on Arran is the summit of Goatfell mountain at 874m (2,866ft). Walkers tackle the steep stone staircase but it is not for the feint hearted! All your effort is well rewarded because the views over the Clyde estuary, the Mull of Kintyre to Islay and Jura are magnificent. On a clear day you will even see the Isle of Bute to the Cowal Peninsula.
On the outskirts of Brodick sits the stunning Brodick Castle, Garden and Country Park. The current Castle was built in 1844 as the ancient seat of the Dukes of Hamilton. Enjoy a new, interactive visitor experience in the castle and imagine the Victoria family who enjoyed Brodick as their holiday home.
On a sunny day enjoy the peace and tranquillity of the formal gardens on the Silver Garden Trail or further afield on the Plant Hunters' Walk. We visited in 2020 when visitors were less in number and enjoyed the garden which was quieter than usual!
Lamlash and Holy Isle
Explore further along the coast to the sailing bay of Lamlash on the south east coast of the island. Lamlash is a delightful village with craft shops, cafes and yachts bobbing on the water. Take the ferry from Lamlash to visit tranquil Holy Isle, owned by the Samye Ling and run as a Bhuddist Retreat and enjoy the friendly welcome of the islanders.
Arran also has an ancient heritage and Machrie Moor has six stone circles and some of the stones are over five metres high. Arran was visited by Viking invaders, then Celts and English, before the Stewart and MacDonald Clans.
Today the heritage includes food and drink with the Arran Cheese shop well worth a visit. In 1995 a new malt whisky distillery opened at Lochranza and is one of the few remaining independent distillers in Scotland. For those who prefer a craft beer then the Arran microbrewery offers an insight into traditional brewing in the walk through guided tour.
Following a busy day exploring this wonderful corner of the Island of Arran on the west coast of Scotland, enjoy a wee dram of Arran whisky as the sun goes down and plan more adventures for the next day!