“Basking Shark, Sea Otters and Porpoises seen during summer! Rowed out to porpoises but couldn’t get closer than 30yds.“
Loch Fyne abounds in wildlife. Seagulls, cormorants, gannets, eider ducks and swans are frequent passers-by.
In the long summer evenings we are sometimes visited by a seal or two, curious to see what is going on. Recently, a pair of otters have fished off the shore.
Of course, you can be as active or as passive as you want. Sometimes just sitting and enjoying the view, watching the wildlife or perhaps reading a book is enough. Or maybe a trip to the local pub for some of the locally brewed and delicious Loch Fyne ales
Eating out in the local area is a joy, as there are so many excellent places to choose. Within 5 miles is the internationally-renowned Loch Fyne Oyster Bar & Shop.
“From a small, roadside stall on the banks of Loch Fyne, a group of businesses have developed based on the principles of good food, sustainably sourced and simply presented, by people who care.”
Nearby, in Cairndow, is the quaint “Stagecoach Inn” which serves good meals and is a favourite of the locals.
Further on, in Inveraray are a number of excellent restaurants, of which the George Hotel is highly recommended for its good food and atmosphere. Opposite the George is the Loch Fyne Whisky Shop where a small souvenir can be had.
In the opposite direction, and on the way to Dunoon is
“The Creggans Inn” which has an international reputation and serves excellent food, particularly in the bar. Set on a small promontory, overlooking the Loch it has suberb views, a very tasty menu and an extremely welcoming atmosphere. Our son, James, and his bride got married there. It was absolutely excellent ~ fabulous food, marvellous service and romantic setting!
Beyond The Creggans is the small yet select Inver Cottage Restaurant which has been much appreciated. Other excellent restaurants are found on the shores of Loch Eck; try the Whistlefield Inn or the Coylet Inn a few miles beyond. For those with a more lavish lifestyle (and a long pocket), the Cameron House Hotel on Loch Lomond serves cuisine of the highest standard and is ideal for that special treat!
Many of our guests come to the cottage for more strenuous activities:
The whole area is surrounded by beautiful hills and mountains that are ideal for the hill-walker. The highest local mountains are Beinn Ime (3318 ft), The Fiddler (2660 ft), and, directly behind the cottage, Cruach nan Capull (1854 ft). For those who prefer something flatter there are several walks locally of which the old shore road (now just a track that passes in front of the cottage) is the most beautiful.
In good weather a particularly rewarding hike is up Dun na Cuaich, with exceptional views from the top. (Go to the castle car park in Inveraray and follow the signs – about 45mins, but steep!)
Swimming is, of course, possible from the beach in front of the cottage. Dunoon (20 miles) has a large swimming pool with slides. Alternatively, there is a small pool at the Drymsynie Hotel in Lochgoilhead (8 miles) and in the Loch Fyne Hotel in Inveraray.
Pony trekking is available at the Corrow Trekking centre at Lochgoilhead and also at the “Argyll Adventure“ outside Inveraray.
We have a small boat and regularly use it to go shopping at Inveraray – or just spend the day on the water, admiring the views or visiting local beauty spots. At high tide boats can be launched from the beach, or from the slipway just along the main road. Although Loch Fyne is a sea loch it is remote from the open sea, and is normally fairly calm.
Our mooring is located just off the cottage though this is only available by negotiation.
Boats may be hired from a number of locations (see below):
Quebec Marine Services
Just south of Inveraray, at the caravan park, Quebec offer boat hire at very competitive rates available, both skippered or to take out on your own, also Dive Air refills available, Telephone: Wullie 07774 823001
Coylet Inn (closed for refurbishment) 01369-840426
DMS Marine (at the jetty at the head of the loch).
April onwards. 01301 703432
Divers have swum in Loch Fyne for many years and the conditions and wildlife are excellent. Though the water is cold at depth, the vis is normally good with excellent diving sites available up and down the loch. For those who are considering diving in Loch Fyne see: Fyne Diving
Fishing is possible in the sea loch directly outside the cottage; in addition, many fish off the pier at Inveraray. Freshwater fishing permits are available from Ardkinglas Estate Office at Cairndow. (Tel: 01499-600261) or from the Creggans Hotel . In addition, Quebec Marine at the Argyll Caravan Park rent fishing boats. (Contact through 01499 302285 or on 07774823001). If you do fish please be punctilious in removing all your hooks from the sea shore. Birds and other animals (including dogs) eat fishy hooks and the distress caused to the animal is unacceptable. Parents must monitor children who fish.
For the devotee, there are a number of fine golf courses in the area, including the new world class 18 hole golf course “The Carrick” on Loch Lomond” which opened for play in 2007 (40 mins away). Closer to home is the Inveraray course. It has a nine-hole course with a total length of 5,598-yards. The nine holes consist of two par threes, one par five and six par fours. The course is set on the shore of Loch Fyne with splendid views of the course and surrounding countryside, so if you happen to run into a bit of bother during your round, then just take refuge in the surrounding panorama. See details of all courses
Available from the Drimsynie Hotel, Lochgilphead April onwards.
Ring Matt 07771-844786 to pre-arrange.