Paths & Trails
Arran has a extensive network of paths and trails with a wide range to suit all abilities and level of fitness. There are high level mountain walks for the more experienced with some challenging full day adventures including the ‘Three Beinns Horseshoe’ (826m), a classic Scottish hill walk via Beinn Nuis, Beinn Tarsuinn and Beinn a ’Chliabhain and The Caisteal Abhail (859m), well worth the climb for spectacular views of the whole island. If you are less confident but keen to explore, then contact Lucy Wallace at Arran Wild Walks for advice and book onto a guided walk with experienced mountain guides. Alternatively, join the Arran Mountain Festival in May for a weekend of guided mountain walks, outdoor activities and social gatherings.
There are also miles of forestry trails leading to waterfalls and spectacular viewpoints, such as Glenashdale Falls and Eas Mor. The Arran Coastal Way, provides a continuous 100k route of the island. You can also discover ancient sites, including the Standing Stones at Machrie Moor, King’s Caves near Machrie and the Giant’s Graves in Whiting Bay.
The Arran Coastal Way group have greatly improved the route between King’s Cross and Lamlash with impressively long sections of boardwalk. Not all land-owners have shared the vision so there are gaps in the walkway and you have to pick your way along the rocky shore. It can be muddy and slippery in these places so you need to take care and wear walking boots with good ankle support (not your best trainers!). It takes around 1.5 hours with approx. 50% boardwalk / 50% shore. Check the tides before you set out as a very high tide will make it more difficult and you might need to scramble through the woodland. You will see lots of wildlife on the way including herons, oyster catchers and numerous other seabirds and perhaps a seal or otter.
Brodick Castle & Country Park offers a programme of guided walks in the summer months and there are a number of woodland trails, including The Duchess Bathing Pools, The Balmoral Drive and Dan’s Walk, a sculpture trail created by a renowned local artist, Tim Pomeroy.
Run Arran is the local running club and they offer a warm welcome to visitors. Adults can join in with one of their mixed ability weekly sessions in Brodick, Lamlash or Whiting Bay. Send them a message to find out about trails and running events. Great 1-2-1 coaching too!
Try some easy trekking within beautiful mountain scenery or an exhilarating beach ride along Sannox or Blackwaterfoot beach. Contact the stables to make advance reservations (both are very popular in July/August, so book ahead).
Sannox Trekking Centre, North Sannox (just outside Sannox on the road to Lochranza)
Cairnhouse Stables, Blackwaterfoot (over the ‘String’ road, the stables are located on right just before you enter the village centre)
Cycling is very popular on this hilly island with the only flat stretch of road between Brodick and Corrie. But the views are worth the pedal power and a slower pace will let you catch sight of wildlife along the way. There are also miles of natural offroad trails but some are hard to find, so check out Arran Bike Club for routes and advice. A popular route for families is Brodick Castle, so you can pedal around the castle grounds or take the slightly more strenuous forestry track starting just beyond the castle gates and circuit around the Balmoral Drive.
Arran Bike Club also welcomes visitors on their weekly rides. New for 2014, there is a weekly mountain bike session starting on Monday 26 May from 6.30pm. They will be approx. 10 km in length, mainly offroad at a relaxed and fun pace, perfect for anyone with a mountain bike in good working order, a helmet and a little enthusiasm. Gerard from the Arran Bike Club will lead the rides, no-one will get left behind and help and advice will always be on hand. Contact Arran Bike Club to check the meeting points.
Bike hire is available from Arran Bike Hire. Giant trail and hybrid bikes available. Bike hire also available from The Boat House in Brodick (next to the small Co-op).
There are 7 golf courses on Arran with friendly club facilities and an automated driving range in Shiskine.
Corrie & Sannox Golf (no website)