Monday, 8 October 2007

Isle of Arran

Apparantly, most folks just pass through the Isle of Arran, by arriving at Brodick then driving to Lochranza, for the ferry to Kintyre, without stopping. Big mistake. We wished we had longer on the Island, but two days was all we had, and we made the most of it.

Seal Shore Campsite is a very laid back site tucked away in the south corner of the island. The site owners sell absolutely delicious freshly caught lobster and crab (which you have to dress yourself) at very reasonable prices – and are well worth tackling with any tools handy – in our case a hammer and an axe! Why we were carrying an axe will be revealed when we get to Muasdale Touring Park.

There are two areas to the site – pre-booked and non-booked, the pre-booked area being nearer the sea, with hook-ups, and is mainly for caravans and motorhomes. Tents are pitched to the rear of the site. The weather was kind to us on Arran, with sunshine on both days, but midges could be a problem as evening appproached, despite being on the coast. We quickly learned how to deal with them – see later blog “Midges”.

One small niggle with this site was that motorhomes and tents turned up early evening and pitched up on the narrow strip right at the front of the site between the beach and the campsite, thus blocking the view for everyone else. So having picked a pitch for its great sea view, you found yourself overlooking the side of a campervan or acres of canvas. This could be solved by only allowing small, low tents along that area but ………………………..

A 20 minute walk or 5 minute bike ride from the site is a brilliant village shop and Post Office – Kildonan Store,– a veritable Tardis with a huge range of food and drink goodies. We even got an elusive bottle of sparkling red Ozzie wine, which we couldn't find in Tesco or Oddbins.

On the way to the ferry port of Lochranza, the departure point for the Kintyre Peninsula, we called in at several tourist places including the delightful Museum of Arran life, Arran Brewery and Arran Aromatics and had no problems parking the ‘van at any of these places. Arran in September was very quiet, and had we been on the island longer we would have had no quarms about taking the ’van out for the day.

The ferry port at Lochranza, destination Claonaig (on the Kintyre peninsula) is tiny, literally a small grid-like car park with a ramp down to the sea, and the ferry is not bookable. You just turn up and wait. We were first in the queue, and had plenty of time for a cup of tea and crab mousse on hot toast, (much to the envy of the motorcyclist in the queue behind us!).

This ferry was much smaller than the previous one, and was open air (to allow for larger, taller vehicles to be loaded). As we departed Arran for the short crossing, we left the sunshine behind, and approached the Kintyre Peninsula shrouded in mist. Our destination – Muasdale Touring Park, Muasdale, Kintyre.

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2 Comments:

Anonymous Roland said...

Hello,

I've really been enjoying your series of island-hopping posts - it's the kind of thing my wife and I enjoy too and brings back memories of our last tour round the Lake District.

I've linked to your posts from my blog - hope you don't mind.

Regards, Roland

8 October 2007 at 11:41  
Blogger AvailablePitch.com said...

Hello Roland, thanks for the comments, glad you are enjoying the posts - there's plenty more to come! Please feel free to add a link here back to your own blog if you like. Catherine

10 October 2007 at 22:45  

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