Five Ferries: Days 4 & 7: Kintyre
Our adventure included two visits to the Kintyre Peninsula; day 4 saw us cross from Portvadie to Tarbert and onwards to a campspot on the west of the promentory. Day 7 saw us return from Gigha and head south to park up at Southend, which is, unsurprisingly, the south end of the peninsula.
One of the negatives in travelling during covid times is that you must stay in your vehicle during short ferry crossings. We took yet another “turn up and go” ferry from Portavadie to Tarbert; this was our favourite ferry as we could see over the sides!
Having chatted to a local couple at Kames, who told us that Skipness, and especially the Seafood cabin was a must-do when visiting Kintyre, and how right they were! The road over to Skipness is single track with passing places for most of the way but the journey is so well worth it. We found a few potential parkup spots on Search For Sites app and were lucky to get one slighly off the road and immediately next to a rocky beach! I did a litter pick here, there were no large pieces of plastic but I did find quite a few bottle caps, hair slides and the like.
We set up our spotter scope and were rewarded with plenty of oystercatcher action as well as various other seabirds and a pair of swans.
The Seafood Cabin is amazing; even during the week it was busy with almost all tables (outdoors) full; I had the best ever hot smoked salmon GF ciabatta and hubby had a plate of scallops – both delicious and reasonably priced for the quality.
We spend a relaxing and quiet evening at our campspot before heading to Tayinloan the next morning to catch the Gigha ferry.
We returned to Kintyre after leaving Gigha on the 7th day of our trip, but this time our destination was the south of the peninsula, to be in place for our day 8 Ferry from Campbeltown to Ardrossan.
We popped into Campeltown to restock provisions at the Co-op (plenty of gluten free items here as well as some lovely local produce) and then parked down at the harbour while I cooked venison burgers for lunch.
After that, we drove around 20 minutes to reach our park-up at Southend Beach, a small settlement at, you’ve guessed it, the south end of the Kintyre peninsula. Like all our campspots, we found this one on Search for Sites app, this was the busiest location we stayed at and it felt a bit strange after the solitude of Gigha!
The car park we stayed in serves nearby footpaths and a long, gently sloping beach, just great for dog walking! However by late afternoon the weather had deteriorated from the sunny days we were used to and before we knew it our view of Northern Ireland had disappeared and we were hearing the pitter patter of raindrops on our roof!
The wind got up in the evening too and although it was pretty warm we had to close the skylight – remind me never to park up here in the cold months!
Next morning after a hearty breakfast of shakshuka, we went in search of Machrahanish beach, which has been on my bucket list for some time. We hope to access it via the village, however there were no car/camper parking spaces available, so we consulted google maps and found another entry road beyond the Machrahanish Dunes Golf Club. There was a small car park with room enough for 4 cars/campervans, and from here, it was a 10 minute walk to the lovely sands, and once more we were blessed with sunshine.
We returned to Campbeltown and parked up at the harbour; Neil and Ramlah had a snooze and Marina went shopping (shame most of the shops are shut on Sundays).
Read about the rest of our trip by clicking the links below