Argyll and Kintyre, Scotland

map argyll kintyre

Kintyre   A long peninsula, some 40 miles long, pushing out towards Northern Ireland which is only 15 miles from Southend village at the tip. Campbelltown is where the 7th Earl of Argyll built a castle overlooking the natural harbour in the early 1600s. He developed the economy by encouraging migration from the Scottish Lowlands, and the town became a royal burgh in 1700. And at the base of the peninsula lies Tarbert (the name means a narrow strip of land with water on either side, over which boats can be pulled) , an attractive little fishing port on a land locked bay

Islay With the distinctive Islay whisky in great demand, Islay has more bustle than other islands. Islay has interesting and varied scenery from 1500 foot mountains to a 5 mile sandy beach at Laggan Bay

Loch Lomond  Loch Lomond is Britain's largest lake, and can be followed along the main A82. The road passes through the picturesque village of Luss, gives you fine views over Ben Lomond, the most southerly of Scotland's monros, through Tarbet, a Victorian resort, built round a large hotel. North of Tarbet both the road and the railway follow the loch to Ardlui, set among mountains at the head of the loch

Inveraray The 3rd Duke of Argyll built Inveraray Castle in the 18th century, when he did so he knocked down the original old town, and replaced it with a new planned town. It is an interesting example how a planned new town can really work, with the Georgian architecture and whitewashed buildings fitting in well into the lochside setting

Crianlarich This is a pivotal point on on routes to the west Highlands. All roads seem to go through this town

Oban In 1773 Johnson and Boswell stayed in Oban, and it was a small village. It grew to a small town with the arrival of the railway. It is now a port for people wanting to take a boat to Iona, Staffa (with Fingal's Cave) or the Isle of Mull. There is a granite cathedral designed by Sir Giles Gilbert Scott. Overlooking the town is McCaig's folly, based on the Coliseum in Rome, it was built to relieve unemployment in the area in the 1890's

Mull Tobermoray, the island's capital, was sited in this sheltered bay to encourage fishing. Duart Castle, ancestral home of the clan MacLean, dominates the sound of Mull, and nearby is Torosay Castle . Mull is a beautiful island with moorland, forest and mountains, with magnificent cliff scenery to the south, and Moy castle with its water filled dungeon

Ballachulish Glencoe runs down to the sea here. Glencoe is one of Scotland's wildest glens, noted for the massacre of the Macdonald's by a company of government Campbell soldiers in 1692. The MacDonalds had failed to swear an oath refuting the Jacobite cause by the deadline given by the government. A company of soldiers stayed with them for 12 days, enjoying their hospitality, then at night, during a snowstorm, the troops began murdering the MacDonalds. Some MacDonalds escaped into the mountains, but many of them later died of exposure. A visitor centre in Glencoe gives you details of the history of the area and the massacre

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