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Argyllís Secret Coast

The seaside village of Tighnabruaich sits on the Cowal Peninsual, Argyll, overlooking the Kyles of Bute. You would be hard pressed to find a more stunning location. It’s a hidden corner of west Scotland, known as Argyll’s Secret Coast because of its undiscovered charm. With hills, glens, white beaches, clear waters and ancient forests, it’s an area of outstanding natural beauty and offers fabulous walking, cycling, fishing and, most famously, sailing.

Tighnabruaich has an art gallery, shops and a good selection of pubs, cafes and hotels serving up delicious locally sourced food, including Loch Fyne’s world-famous seafood. Check out the Royal an Lochan – just a five-minute walk from Allt Beag – and enjoy a dram in the Shinty Bar or some delicious fish in the restaurant. The Burnside Bistro is renowned for its home cooking, while the recently opened Wellpark Hotel offers up tasty local fare in a stunning location. The Kames Hotel, a firm favourite with sailors, often has live music. The village is also home to Kyles Athletic, one of Scotland’s most successful shinty clubs. If you’re here during the shinty season, try and catch one of their games. Another highlight is a summertime trip down the loch on board the Waverley, the world’s last ocean-going paddle steamer.

With protective hills, deep water, silent anchorages, relaxed tides and no crowds, Argyll’s Secret Coast offers world-class sailing. If you have your own boat, there are launching and mooring facilities near the house or guests can charter yachts locally. You can also learn to sail at the family-run Tighnabruaich Sailing School.

The Colintraive Hotel, Tighnabruaich, Royal an Lochan and Kames Hotels all have dedicated visitors’ moorings in the Kyles, as does The Creggans Inn Hotel at Strachur in Upper Loch Fyne. Martin Lawrence, author of the highly regarded Imray Yachtsmans’ Pilots, recorded the Oystercatcher Inn at Otter Ferry as one of Yachting Monthly’s Best Waterside Pubs. There is also the fabulous Portavadie Marina to experience. In addition, this area has seen three prestigious Fife Classic Yacht Regattas in recent years and the Kyles of Bute Sailing Club has a calendar of racing events including the Round the Island race.

Other activities
If you like to keep active, there’s plenty to keep you busy. Tighnabruaich has a tennis court and a stunning nine-hole golf course with breath-taking views from every tee. There are lots of lovely walks and cycle rides close by. Fishing trips and stalking can also be arranged. There’s a lot for those seeking culture too: the area is dotted with ancient sites and ruined castles and there are some great hidden galleries to seek out. There’s also the opportunity for a spot of pampering, with a wide selection of beauty and well-being treatments available at Portavadie Marina’s Beauty Room. Events, festivals, fairs and celebrations take place throughout the year, so keep an eye on Argyll’s Secret Coast events diary.
50 yards from Alt Beag
Portavadie Marina on a crisp winterís day
Tighnabruaich Pier - port of call for Waverley
Argyllís Secret Coast
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