Islay Walk: The Big Strand

Walk Information
Type: Beach Walk Big Strand
Terrain: Grass, Sand
Distance/Time: 1 - 6 Miles, 1 - 3 hours
Grade: Easy to Leisurely
Wildlife: Birds
Where: View area on map

Buy Map: Islay South Explorer Map

Walk Description

Note: The Big Strand is accessible from Kintra, from a track north of Islay Airport and also from a track over the Laggan Estate. Below are directions for the latter.

Directions: Access to the start of the walk is possible from the low road and it is not signposted so it's a bit hard to find. If you come from Port Ellen on the low road (A846) you have to pass the airport. A few miles further down the road, before a slight bend to the right, you see a wee pine forest in the distance and some buildings on both sides of the road. Right before these buildings is a wee track on your left (see map), it belongs to Laggan Estate. Continue on the track keeping left at first and pass a few gates, make sure to close them again, and keep on driving until you see a wee parking space on your left after half a mile or so. One word of warning, the end of the track can be very wet over 10 metres with a lot of standing water.

Start: From the parking space you can continue on foot and walk over the dunes to the beach, they are a habitat for rabbits and birds. When you enter the beach you are most likely all alone and you can walk as far as you like or just sit and enjoy the beach. When you head north (right) you end up at River Laggan where it flows into the sea. Go left (south) and you can walk all the way to the airport and further south to Machrie and Kintra if you are able to cross the few burns. No matter which way you go, this is a most enjoyable and refreshing walk, very suitable for children.

Read more - Walk report and pictures on Islay Blog

Public Road to The Big Strand

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