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Travelling from Glasgow to Arran: Exploring Scotland in Miniature

9 Jan 2024

Like any major city, there is plenty to do in Glasgow. Scotland's largest metropolis in both population and area is abuzz with activities, sights and experiences. But sometimes the hustle and bustle of city life can get a bit too much and we hanker for a quieter, slower pace of life, even if it’s just for the weekend. When the urge to escape Glasgow hits, there is no finer destination than a visit to the Isle of Arran. 

From the mainland, you’ll find our stunning island to the west across the Firth of Clyde. Often called ‘Scotland in miniature’ for its mountainous north and verdant south, Arran boasts varied landscapes from hills to forests, beaches to glens, a rich history and a welcoming community. But how do you get there? Well, there's no need to worry about booking a flight – Arran doesn't have an airport. Instead, the only way to get there is by ferry.

The journey over the water begins at the port of Ardrossan, located about 30 miles southwest of Glasgow and easily accessible by rail or road. From Ardrossan, CalMac operates regular ferry services to Brodick, the main village on Arran and you can pick up a foot passenger ticket for under £10. The ferry ride itself is a scenic experience, offering panoramic views of the Scottish coastline. Whether you choose to sit back and relax in the comfort of the passenger lounge or brave the elements on deck, the crossing is the start of your island adventure.

Once you arrive in Brodick you'll find yourself in the heart of the island's vibrant community. The town is home to a variety of independent shops, cafes, and restaurants, making it the perfect starting point for exploring the island. If you're feeling adventurous, you can rent a bike or hop on a local bus to discover Arran's hidden gems at your own pace. Alternatively, why not lace up your hiking boots and tackle one of the island's many scenic trails? From gentle strolls along the shoreline to challenging climbs up rugged peaks, there's something for every level of outdoor enthusiast. If you visit in the summer you could even shed your inhibitions (and your clothes) while visiting Cleat’s Shore Naturist Beach.

Of course, no visit to Arran would be complete without sampling some of the island's famous produce chief among them the Single Malt Peated Whisky made in our award-winning Lagg Distillery. Book a tour of the distillery and enjoy a dram or two of our Core Range single malts - the Kilmory and the Corriecravie. After your tour and tasting experience take a seat in our cafe or whisky bar for lunch and enjoy the views of Ailsa Craig and the Lighthouse that sits atop.

Have a dram in the Lagg Distillery whisky bar with views out to Ailsa Craig.

Throughout the remainder of your time on Arran,don't forget to indulge in some delicious local cuisine – whether it's freshly caught seafood or something from the Arran Cheese Shop, there's plenty to tempt your taste buds.

As the day draws to a close, you can unwind and relax in one of Arran's cosy accommodation options, from charming guesthouses and bed-and-breakfasts to luxury hotels and self-catering cottages. You'll soon forget about the stresses of everyday life and find yourself truly immersed in the tranquillity of island living.

So if you’re looking to escape the city, why not embark on a journey to the Isle of Arran? With its breathtaking scenery, rich culture, and warm hospitality, it's the perfect destination for a rejuvenating break away. We look forward to welcoming you soon at the 2023 Distillery of the Year!