A guide to visiting the Applecross Peninsula

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Applecross is a remote peninsula on the north west coast of Scotland has some of the most dramatic scenery in the country. It is a fantastic place to explore, whether on foot, by bike, or by boat.

To help you explore, we have compiled a guide to this beautiful region, including places to stay, restaurants, walks and other activities. Whether you prefer to relax in a country B&B, or kayak across open waters, we are certain you will have a glorious time in Applecross.

Applecross Peninsula. Picture: Creative Commons

Applecross Peninsula. Picture: Creative Commons

GETTING HERE

Applecross is a very remote area. The name Applecross, used for both the village and the peninsula, is at least 1,300 years old, but locals call the village ‘the street’.

There are two possible ways of reaching Applecross, one of which is the scenic coast road from Shielding. This road goes past Loch Torridon, and offers some breath-taking views.

The other road to Applecross is called the Bealach na Ba, or the Pass of the Cattle. This is the highest road in Britain, at 2,053 feet above sea level. From the pass, there are incredible panoramas of the bay, with views of Raasay and Skye.

Applecross is nestled on Scotland's north west coast. Picture: Google

Applecross is nestled on Scotland's north west coast. Picture: Google

PLACES TO STAY

Spindrift Bed and Breakfast

(Applecross, Kalnakill, Strathcarron IV54 8XL, 01520 744407)

This B&B is housed in a new-build, completed in 2009. It is located just off the coast road which passes through the peninsula, and is only eight miles from Applecross village.

Spindrift is a family home, with a self-contained studio apartment. This apartment can be rented short-term for bed and breakfast accommodation, or it can be rented for longer periods as a self-catering flat.

Just below the house, there is a rocky beach, which provides an excellent vantage point for spotting seals and dolphins.

Carn-Raineach

(Seonag Brown, Carn-Raineach, Camusteel, Applecross, Strathcarron, IV54 8LT, 01520 744421)

In the township of Camusteel, you can find this charming bed and breakfast, which offers splendid views of Raasay, Rona and Skye. It is situated only a mile or so from Applecross village.

The B&B has two rooms, one of which is a family room, containing a double and a single bed. The second room is a double, but the bed can be converted into two twin beds if needed. Both rooms have en suite bathrooms.

Collie Mhuiridh Bed and Breakfast

(Collie Mhuiridh, Hartfield, Applecross, Strathcarron, 01520 744490)

Collie Mhuridh is a cosy little B&B just half a mile from the Applecross Inn. The owners offer a hearty breakfasts, as well as a warm welcome to guests and their dogs.

From the windows, you can see the green countryside and magnificent trees. It is also not far from the shore, and you can hear the deer barking during rutting season.

Tigh Ruaraidh

(Tigh Ruaraidh, Lonbain, Applecross, IV54 8XX, 01162 605 726)

If you are looking for self-catering accommodation, this four-bedroom house can provide everything you need. It can house a maximum of six people, making it ideal for small groups of family or friends.

The house was built in 1987 by the current owners, and expanded in 2005 to ensure that guests would always be comfortable. The house has received four stars from Visit Scotland, marking it as a high-end place to stay. It is located seven miles from Applecross village.

Eagle Rock

(Eagle Rock, Milton IV54 8LS, 01520 744497)

This self-catering house was designed by an award-winning architect, incorporating top-quality furniture and fittings. The house sleeps up to ten people, with five bedrooms overlooking the rugged Highland landscape.

The house has four bathrooms with extra-large baths and power showers. The kitchen is very well-equipped with a Nespresso coffee machine and an American-style fridge-freezer.

PLACES TO EAT

Applecross Walled Garden

(Applecross, Strathcarron IV54 8ND, 01520 744440)

The Potting Shed café is part of Applecross’s beautiful Victorian walled garden, which was restored to its former glory by John and Elaine Glover. Here, the Glovers grow all the greens and vegetables they need.

The all day breakfasts are a great treat, and the tasting menu nights are particularly excellent. If elevenses is more your bag, there are plenty of home-baked cakes, scones and brownies for you to tuck into.

Applecross Inn

(Shore St, Applecross, Strathcarron IV54 8LR, 01520 744262)

The Inn has an award-winning, Michelin-star restaurant, run by local boy Robbie MacRae. After being head chef for Marco Pierre, he returned to his home-town to set up this charming pub restaurant.

Local venison and seafood from the Bay are highlights of the menu, which can be accompanied by a malt whisky, or a micro-brewed ale of your choice.

In the winter, there is an open fire to keep you cosy, and in the summer, you can sit in the garden and admire the magnificent sea view.

Applecross Inn-Side-Out

(Shore St, Applecross, Strathcarron IV54 8LR, 01520 744262)

If you want to enjoy the great outdoors while sampling the finest fish and chops in Applecross, this is the place for you. This 1950s-style Airstream trailer serves delicious beer-battered fish and chips, as well as fresh-ground coffee and superb home-made ice cream.

The proprietor is Aron Paramor, who trained at Moro for seven years and spent time at Gelupo in London’s Soho, before setting up this gem of a joint.

Kishorn Seafood Bar

(Strathcarron, IV54 8XA, 01520 733240)

Here, local seafood is prepared simply, ensuring the “fullest natural flavour”. This seafood bar is a local favourite, and celebrated its 20th anniversary in April 2016.

All the shellfish used at this restaurant is locally sourced using sustainable methods – including oysters, mussels, prawns and scallops. The seafood platter is especially good – having won a Best of Wester Ross Award in 2006.

More recently, Kishorn Seafood Bar won a Best Eatery Award in the 2012 Highlands and Islands Food and Drink Awards.

WALKS

Sand to Applecross Bay

This walk is relatively easy, and goes between two sandy bays. On the way, you can admire the islands of Raasay, Skye and Rona from the coast. This 5km walk can be done in either direction, and takes approximately one and a half hours. You can also return to your starting point, making this a three hour walk.

Cuaig Beach

This one hour walk takes you to a secluded sandy beach, but make sure to time your walk so that you arrive during low tide. Be careful on the path, as it can be boggy, and you also need to cross a river on stepping stones. The entire walk is 2km long.

Rassal Ashwood

This walk goes through the most northerly ash woodland in Britain. This particular wood is at least 6000 years old. The walk makes a circuit around the woods, going between grassy clearings. The path is mainly grass, but can be soggy in places. The walk is 2 km, and takes between 30 and 60 minutes.

Applecross House

The grounds of Applecross House are a great place to take a gentle stroll. The route combines riverside, beach and woodland, going along well delineated paths and tracks. The walk takes around one and a half hours, and is about 4 km long.

Milton Circuit

This one hour walk makes a circuit around Applecross village, and allows you to investigate the nearby woods, crofts and loch. There is plenty of wildlife here, and the paths and tracks are well-delineated. There are lovely views of the bay, and plenty of time for a drink at the pub.

OTHER ACTIVITIES

Mountain and Sea Guides

(2 Craite Barn, Applecross, Strathcarron IV54 8LN, 01520 744394)

This centre runs several different outdoor adventures, including a two-day kayaking course. Over any weekend, summer or winter, you can book this course, and groups of three or more can have weekday courses too. This is a great chance to enjoy the open water, and spot some seals and otters on the way.

Venture Mòr

(Applecross, Hartfield House, Strathcarron IV54 8ND, 0845 340 2059)

Venture Mòr offers a whole range of activities, including hill walking, kayaking, yoga, and mountain biking. The guides and instructors are experienced professionals who teach all levels of proficiency.

Torridon Yacht Charter

(The Ob Shed, Ardheslaig, Strathcarron IV54 8XH, 07803 206303)

From the village of Shieldaig on Loch Torridon, you can charter a yacht and explore the Inner and Outer Hebrides, or even further afield. The yacht itself is a 2013 Hanse 385 called Sula, which os 11.4 metres in length, and sleeps 6 guests.

Cycling at Bealach Beag

(Shieldaig, Strathcarron, IV54 8XY)

This cycling route will allow you to fully enjoy the remarkable landscape of the Applecross peninsula. The route travels south east from Shieldaig, through the Glen to Tornapress, and then the road climbs to Beleach-na-Ba. Along the coast, you can see some dramatic coastal views, and then return to Shieldaig and its loch.