An explorer's guide to the islands of Britain

56.798140, -5.860744
Distance: 22 km
Difficulty: 2 (4 on Shona Beag)
Method: Walking
Wow Factor: 9 out of 10

Key Facts

  • Location: Loch Moidart, west coast Scotland.
  • Size: 525 hectares
  • Terrain: Steep, rough and through bracken on Shona Beag; tracks and well-marked paths, some of which can be boggy on Eileen Shona
  • Access: Tidal crossing (or kayak from mainland pier at GR NM 661 712)
  • Height gain: 890 metres
  • Map: OS Explorer 390
  • Starting point: Layby south of Glenuig. Lat/Long 56.802857, -5.8124536; GR NM67339 74410
  • Accommodation/food:

    Several excellent self-catering cottages on the island, see www.eileanshona.com . There are no facilities on the island for public use; there is a community shop and great inn and hotel at Glenuig.

  • Island Summary:

    Eilean Shona sits in the entrance of Loch Moidart to the south of the wild and rugged Moidart peninsula just off the West Coast of Scotland. The isles of Muck, Eigg and Rhum lie to the west, with Skye to the north. Eilean Shona is a private and secluded island dotted with several restored cottages for holidaymakers along with the exclusive main house and gardens and a permanent population of two. Fairy tale forests and enchanting valleys inspired J.M Barrie to write the adventures of Peter Pan. The hilly interior is dominated by heather, small trees and rocks whilst the coast is graced with two beautiful sandy beaches at Shoe Bay and Baramore.

  • Look out for:
    • Glorious beach
    • Skinny dips and secluded swims
    • Enchanted forests and valleys of Baramore
  • Route description:

    Eileen Shona is accessed via a short tidal crossing to Shona Beag, a wild and remote peninsula to the east of the island. The free-range route across Shona Beag then reaches the isthmus that connects it to Eileen Shona. From here, the coastal path is reasonably well marked. It passes the sublime scenery of the North Channel before heading inland and climbing alongside the charming Barmore Burn to a scenic saddle on the flanks of Beinn a’ Bhaillidh before reaching the south coast.

  • Getting there:

    From the turn-off to the Glenuig Inn on the A861/. After 2km the road rises to a memorial cairn, after a further 1 km there is a gated entrance to a stone track and space for one vehicle if parked considerately (Post code PH38 4NG).

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