Head out to the lovely village of Strontian, with its local shops, inn and village green. Wander through the Atlantic oak woodland at Ariundle, a Celtic rainforest and one of Scotland's National Nature Reserves. Join the fairies on a magical walk that skirts along the banks of the River Strontian. Explore the historic Corrantee lead mine, one of a group of mines that was worked between 1725 and 1871. Stop off for a delicious lunch at Cafe Sunart or take afternoon tea at The Ariundle Centre and, maybe, round off your day a wee dram at the Strontian Hotel.

Strontian (Point of the Fairy Knoll) sits on the shores of Loch Sunart and is dominated by the corbett, Beinn Respiole. The village gave its name to the silvery white-yellowish element, Strontium, and the mineral strontianite whose translucent/ white needle shaped crystals were discovered in 1790 in the lead mines around Strontian.

Strontian serves as a hub for walkers with a good selection of walks nearby. If you fancy a gentle stroll, why not explore the Policy Woodland or take the enchanting Phemies walk. Alternatively, head off on a wildlife adventure along the shores of Loch Sunart looking for otters, seals, diving ducks and waders. For a longer walk, take the lovely walk along the banks of the Strontian River and then through woodland and moorland to Scotstown and Ardnastaing.

Take an exhilarating drive to the wee remote village of Polloch in Glenhurich Forest and stroll along the shores of Loch Shiel. For a more energetic adventure, why not explore the area by bike (bike hire is available in the village)? Alternatively, take to the river for a spot of fishing (permit required) or enjoy a kayaking adventure on a sea loch.

A great day out on foot, bike or car.

 

Reasons To Visit: Walk, Wildlife Hotspot

Venture into the wilds of Sunart and head out on the wee yellow road from Strontian, through Scotstown, over the hills, the steep steep hills, and down into Polloch.  The road is steep and bendy, though worth the journey as it takes you into the wild depths of Sunart and Moidart.  There is a lovely Forestry Commission walk from a small car park at Polloch taking you to the shores of Loch Shiel where you can look for eagles, otters and divers as well as stopping for a picnic on a particulary well positioned bench overlooking Loch Shiel (we always do).  You can also cycle along the forest road on the shores of Loch Shiel all the way to Glenfinnan and beyond, or walk to to the Corrantee Lead mines from the shores of Loch Doilet.

 


Reasons To Visit: Walk

A lovely circular walk over moorland, woodland and along the banks of the Strontian River to Scotstown and Ardnastaing.  The walk provides a good opportunity to enjoy the fauna and flora associated with deciduous and coniferous woodland, heath land and riparian habitats.  The ground flora is particular lovely in Spring and Summer, with range of spring woodland  flowers and, later in the year, a resplendence of orchids and the heath flora.

Park in the small parking area on the road past the Ben View Hotel, or start from Strontian Village Centre.  You can also take the walk to The Corantee lead Mines from Ardnastaing following the well defined path over the craggy hills of Sunart to the old mine workings dating from the 1860s. Another interesting and scenic walk for a fine day. 


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 ( Sunart )

Reasons To Visit: Walk

A varied walk with some lovely sections along the banks of the Strontian River, the surrounding hills and through the Community Woodland at Strontian. There are some superb views on route of Loch Sunart, the village of Scotstown and the hills and crags around Strontian and Scotstown.

You can start the walk from either Strontian Village Centre of the car park at Ariundle.  The walk can be extended by venturing into Atlantic oak woodland at Ariundle, or even up to the lead mines in the hills above if you are feeling energetic.  be sure to stop for refreshments at The Ariundle Centre or Cafe Sunart en route...


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 ( Sunart )

Reasons To Visit: Village, Public Toilet facilities, Petrol Station

The village of Strontian lies on the northern shores of Loch Sunart. Its Gaelic name, Sron an T’Sithein, refers to Point of the Fairy Knoll.  The village is centred around a lovely village green with picnic tables and interpretation boards.  Facilities in the village include petrol station, grocery shop, cash machine, post office, cafe, village hall, public conveniences and craft shop.  The local secondary school also supports a public library and an entertainment hub (The Sunart Centre).  There is also a restaurant and tearoom and small craft shop at the nearby Ariundle Centre.  Local hotels include the Strontian Hotel and the Kilcamb Lodge Hotel, both offering loch views. There is also a small slipway by the jetty for the launch of small boats. 

Strontian was established in the 1720s to provide accommodation for local lead mine workers; an industry which led to the discovery of the mineral strontianite in the late 1700s and the element Strontium to which the village gave its name.  Strontium is unique amongst elements being the only one named after a place in the UK.  Strontium and its salts have a variety of uses, but the most dramatic is its use in fireworks where it imparts an intense red colour to light up the night sky.  Strontian can also claim to be one of the first places in Scotland to host a floating church which was moored offshore on Loch Sunart in the mid 1800s. 

Nearby is the wonderful Atlantic oakwoods at Ariundle; there is a lovely circular walk through this Celtic rainforest, a national nature reserve.   There are plenty of other local walks in and around Strontian.  You can also hire a bike to explore further afield.   


Reasons To Visit: Walk, Wildlife Hotspot, Nature Reserve

The Ariundle National Nature Reserve is a lovely place to visit at any time of the year, and there are two lovely walks through the woods and hills.  The Reserve is a fine example of ancient coastal Atlantic oakwood and is recognised for its old oaks supporting a huge diversity and abundance of ferns.

There is a Forestry Commission carpark at the end of the road to Ariundle with interpreation boards and a map of the walk options.

Look out for chequered skipper, pearl-bordered fritillary, small pearl-bordered fritillary and the rare northern emerald dragonfly on the wing in summer. The reserve also supports a range of woodland birds, including redstarts, warblers, tree pipits, tits, as well as breeding populations of crossbills.  Look out for tracks and signs of pine marten, badger, wildcat, pipstrelle bat and otter.