Mingary Castle, former stronghold of the MacIans of Ardnamurchan, has been recently restored and is a now a luxurious hotel. It has four unique suites sleeping a total of 10 and offers castle guests a 10 course tasting menu in the grand dining room. Well placed to explore The Ardnamurchan Peninsula and also for the ferry from Kilchoan to Tobermory on The Isle of Mull.
A rewarding walk to the magnificant beach at Port nam Murrach at the end of the Rhu peninsula near Arisaig, Morar with fabulous views on route of clear blue seas, dotted with small islands. A great place for a seashore safari, bird watching, botanising or just relaxing in this stunning location.
Look and listen out for pipits, skylarks, twites, lapwings and plovers on the heath, and waders, sea ducks, cormorants and shags, ringed plovers and otters along the coast. If you are lucky you may also see white-tailed eagle flying or fishing along the coastline.
1. Park in the layby by the old pier building at the end of the road to Rhu, near Arisaig. Follow the gravelled track into the Arisaig Estate which skirts around the coast with good views of the coastline. The route passes through heath Calluna- Erica assemblages with Bog myrtle (Myrica gale), and rough pasture, with many rocky outcrops. Take time to admire the patchwork of lichens on the outcrops, stone walls, and scattered boulders.
The track continues by the side of a house eventually ending at Rhu House.
2. Turn left at Rhu House walking along the boundary fence by the side of a wooden shed. Head through the metal gate and continue along the same fence line following the path, with a stone wall immediately to your right.
3. Go through a second metal gate and continue along the grassy/stony path towards the coast through the heath. The path can be a little wet and muddy in places. These damper paces support a range of bryophytes and ferns.
There are fabulous views as you approach the coast, silvery sand, dotted with rocky outcrops and boulders, turquoise blue seas and species rich coastal machair flora, a riot of colour in late Spring and Summer. The beach is covered with a variety of shells, particularly dense along the strand line, along with other washed-up items. There are also numerous small rock pools with small shrimp like crustacean, anemones, dog whelks, top shells and mussels. There is also an abundance of barnacles on the rocky outcrops, exposed at low tides.
Take time to explore the other beaches around the point, with range from sandy to shingle to boulder strewn. Look out for otters feeding among the fucoids and kelp forests.
This is a great spot for relaxing, rock-pooling, beachcombing, botanising or just enjoying a picnic or coffee break.
4. Return by the same route.
starting grid ref:
- there and back