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One holiday is never enough
Discover the Isle of Arran with The Arran Team
Arran is situated off the west coast of Scotland, known as ‘Scotland in Miniature’. It boasts an abundance of wildlife, including seals, deer and the rare red squirrel, many outdoor pursuits, a large selection of walks for all abilities and plenty of restaurants and bars to choose from. There is something for everyone whether you enjoy an activity filled holiday or simply want to relax, unwind and enjoy the scenery.
Arran is accessed by ferry from two ports, Ardrossan and Claonaig/Tarbert. Ardrossan to Brodick is the main sailing and takes 55 minutes to sail across. If you are travelling by car you need to book your car on the ferry, which should be done well in advance as the ferry does get very busy. Claonaigh/Tarbert to Lochranza brings you it to the north end of the island and takes 30 mins to sail across. You cannot book your car on this ferry you just need to turn up. The sole ferry operator on both routes is Caledonian MacBrayne.
Kildonan and Pirnmill are generally regarded as the ‘best’ beaches on the island, however, we all have different needs and there are plenty to choose from, even if you are living in one of the main villages. Kildonan is unusual due to lying just a short distance off the main road overlooking the small island of Pladda. It has a hotel nearby for lunch, many good walks in the area where there are opportunities to watch large colonies of grey seal. Pirnmill is a very clean, fresh beach with The Lighthouse Restaurant nearby for a rest and some good grub.
In Brodick there is a very accessible beach with views of Goatfell and the surrounding mountains. It can generally be busier due to Brodick being a larger village, however you could walk down ‘Fisherman’s Walk’ to lead you to ‘Home Farm’ and the attractions found there. Alternatively, walk to the second part of the beach (separated by tide, accessible walking partly Fisherman’s Walk) which tends to be quieter.
Kings Cross, very near to Whiting Bay has a quieter, sandy beach for those that want to explore further than the village main beach but stay close by.
Cleat’s Shore is Scotland’s only officially designated naturist beach. It can be found near Lagg, South Island and is signposted on the main coastal road. Torrylinn Beach, via the footpath next to Kilmory Stores, is one of the best sandy beaches on the island.
Blackwaterfoot is a popular beach on the west side, a long sandy stretch with walks nearby to Kings Cave and Machrie. Well known for being rather ‘windy’ but nevertheless, it will leave you fresh faced!
If you are feeling fit and adventurous why not make the most of the great outdoors by going horse riding, there are two great riding centers and whichever one you choose, the scenery will surely be amazing and the ride can be catered to suit your needs.
There are also many great walks, from breathtaking waterfalls to stunning glens it depending on how far you want to go. If you are feeling really fit, climb Goatfell, Arrans Munroe and experience the stunning views over Brodick Bay from the summit.
There are seven golf courses on the Island—many with magnificent views and local hospitality within the tearooms. There is also a driving range for those that would rather practice their swing.
A wide variety of game shooting is available at Dougarie Lodge.
You can go deer stalking and experience the challenge of getting really close to Britain's largest and most alert native mammals using patience and stealth, ground cover and wind, either for that unique photograph or the ultimate rifle-shot.
You can experience some outdoor sports ranging from paragliding with ‘Flying Fever’ to a wide range of activities at Arran Adventure, there is certainly plenty to keep the outdoor sports enthusiast entertained! Sea kayaking, Gorge walking, Mountain biking, Power Kiting, Mountain boarding and various power boat expeditions are just a few examples to get the adrenalin going. Every year the Arran Mountain Festival offers fantastic walks for all abilities, which we are proud to sponsor. You can view full details at www.arranmountainfestival.co.uk
Brodick Castle, Brodick
Gardens and country park open all year round, castle open April to October. Explore the castle looking out for Bogles and other interesting things, and keep an eye out red squirrels and other wildlife. Lots of fun things to do including a children’s self-guided quiz, junior garden trail, regular family events, an adventure playground, nature room, plus guided junior tours of the castle.
The Heritage Museum, Brodick
Open April to October. Discover Arran past as you wonder around the museums buildings, which include a smiddy, a farmhouse, coach house and more. There are children’s toys in the play hut, see Tommy’s big red tractor, take part in the children’s quiz, plus regular special events and exhibitions.
The PlayBarn at The Auchrannie
Open all year round. Check out the three-tier indoor mega softplay, external play and picnic area, teen zone, Internet area, big screen tv, juke box and wi-fi.
Enjoy a short pony rides for 3–5 year olds at North Sannox Pony Trekking Centre (01770 810222). Longer pony treks available at North Sannox and Cairnhouse Riding Centre.
There are many restaurants, hotels, tea rooms and bars around the island, including takeaways. There is something for everyone and you will never be short of finding somewhere to eat.
There are an abundance of shops on Arran, definitely something for everyone.
Local Produce – Why not sample the delights of our popular food products made here on the island? Locally produced items include, cheese, ale, whisky, chocolate and ice cream.
Arts and Crafts – There are art galleries displaying work and paintings by local artists and various shops that sell jewellery and craftwork by local designers and craftsmen.
Clothing – Arran has a number of clothing shops. It is a great place to buy outdoor wear.
Gifts – There are a number of gift shops on Arran allowing you to bring home a piece of Arran as presents or just treat yourself.
Arran is the perfect place for you to unwind and re-energise. There are many opportunities for feeling refreshed and de-stressed. From a fresh, breezy morning walk on the beach to the hill walks that get your body working. Arran has various options for you to achieve your inner calm.
You can relax and enjoy some health treatments, such as Hot Stone Therapy, Facials, Algae wrap, Pre-natal treatment and full body massage are just a few to choose from.
Why not pamper yourself with some beauty treatments. Manicures, pedicures, makeovers, waxing and paraffin wax therapy are just a few choices to beautify yourself at on Arran.
The Auchrannie Spa Resort has a swimming pool, gym, sports in the games hall or just simply enjoy the atmosphere.
The Kinloch Hotel has a swimming pool, gym, snooker and Arran’s only squash court facilities.