If you would like to enjoy the views of the most southerly point in south-west Scotland, stop by the Mull of Kintyre! Walking the Kintyre Way will take you to Cambeltown, with a small diversion, you can reach it!
Located on the Kintyre Peninsula, at the Mull of Kintyre you can see views out to the Antrim coast on Northern Ireland. At the Mull of Kintyre there is a historical lighthouse and some terrific wildlife! Also, made famous because of Paul McCartney’s song ‘Mull Of Kintyre,’ the area in Argyll and Bute is a very popular place for tourists to stop off. Just a 30 minute drive from the ending place of the Kintyre Way in Cambeltown, Mull of Kintyre is one of the most scenic point in Scotland. Well worth a trip!
Mull of Kintyre History
Kintyre and the surrounding Islands was always held by the MacDonalds, known as the Lords of the Isles. But in 1647, during the civil war between Scotland and England, the Royalist army, lead by a MacDonald were tailed by the Covenanters and pushed down the Kintyre peninsula. Many of the royalist army managed to escape, however whoever was left were forced to live in Dunaverty Castle. Which is located in Southend, nine miles from the Mull of Kintyre. Only four people survived after the Covenanters cut off the Castle’s water supply. Also, the Covenanters brought the plague to Kintyre, which killed most of the population!
Fishing & Whisky
The small fishing village of Cambeltown was steadily increasing in size. In the 18th century an act was introduced by the Government which encouraged the building of suitable boats to tackle the dominating Dutch herring fleets. All boats had to meet in Cambeltown each year and were inspected by officers. This evidently increased the fishing fleet in Cambeltown and so increasing the size of the town itself.
In the late 1700s the first legal distillery opened. And in the 1800s, 33 more opened! Steamers would pile up daily to travel up the Clyde to Glasgow. Though today only three distilleries are still in the town, they are doing extremely well and are well respected within the whisky industry!
A place with an abundance of history, the route down the Kintyre Peninsula towards Cambeltown on the Kintyre Way is ideal! Would there be any reason not to visit the Mull of Kintyre?
The Kintyre Peninsula stretches all the way from the Mull of Kintyre to the south of Tarbert. The Kintyre Way is an 87-mile journey down from Tarbert to Cambeltown, you might as well stop at the Mull of Kintyre.
Tabert is a popular tourist haven! With access from here to all the ferry crossings to islands including Islay, Arran, Gigha etc. Located on Loch Fyne, the village is backed by hills and lies on a very pretty harbour. This area of Scotland is traditionally known for the amazing seafood, and so in July, Tarbert hosts the annual seafood festival! In the surrounding area of Tarbert, is an area rich in history. Inverarary Castle, on your route to Tarbet by car, is open to the public in the summer months. Also, Tarbet Castle is incredibly easy to access from a foot path.
The most populated place on the peninsula is Cambeltown, which is located at the head of a Loch! Once a thriving area in shipbuilding and the whiskey industry, but today there are only three distilleries left. The most well-known probably being the Springbank distillery! Unlike any other distillery in Scotland all the processes are carried out in-house. Incredibly proud of the area and history of Cambeltown, Springbank uses traditional methods and are involved in every step of the process!
There are many other aspects to this idyllic town. You can also pop over to the Davaar Island, which is accessible from the mainland on low tide. On the unpopulated island there a number of sea caves to explore, one of which includes a crucifixion painting! Continue around the island to visit the lighthouse. If you are walking the Kintyre Way, this is the perfect opportunity to stop by!
Wildlife & Activities – what to expect!
It is no surprise that this area of Scotland offers an abundant amount of wildlife! From otters, golden eagels and sea eagels to puffins and porpoise. The hills, shores and sea around the Mull of Kintyre offer the chance to see them all! From Cambeltown, there is the oppourtunity to have a Mull of Kintyre sea tour. Another benefit of walking the Kintyre Way! And after walking, why not go on a relaxing tour on the still waters surrounding Kintyre! You might catch some dolphins or minke whales!
On your journey down the peninsula, experience many different forms of animals and wildlife. A very rural part of the world, there are many farming villages. From wherever you are, keep your eyes open for oyster catchers, herons or gannets!
Also, there are many golf courses located around this area. Typical of Scotland! The perfect chance to relax after walking the Kintyre Way. There is one located in Tarbert. Also, on the Kintyre Peninsula, you can charter boats, like the sea tour! This gives you the chance to go diving or take part in some fishing.
Did you know?
- The second lighthouse commissioned in Scotland is nearby, the lighthouse is accessible by a single track road. A bus runs from Glasgow to Cambeltown, and from there it is a 30-minute drive to the Mull of Kintrye!
- Paul McCartney’s video for the song with the Wings, ‘Mull of Kintyre,’ was filmed at a farm he bought called High Park Farm in Kintyre.
- Heading on after the trip along the peninsula, why not continue to explore? From Tarbert you are not far from ferry terminals like Kennacraig and Tayinloan, from here you can visit the incredible islands of Islay and Gigha!
If you would like any more information about how you can incorporate the Mull of Kintyre into your Kintyre Way route, or if you have any other questions, contact us!