Overlooking the Summer Isles with views out across the open sea, Achiltibuie is a beautiful, remote hamlet set on the north west coast of Scotland. The setting is perfect for any relaxing holiday with plenty of walks and an abundance of gorgeous scenery, but if you’re visiting with children, you’ll want to know what else Achiltibuie has to offer for them. You’ll find that there’s so much to keep them interested, they might not even reach for a phone or tablet all holiday!
Take a boat tour of the Summer Isles
During the summer months (May to September), boat tours leave from Achiltibuie, several times a day. The Summer Isles range in size from those which are inhabitable to smaller rocks. As you sail around the islands, peppered with mysterious caves and rocky outcrops, you can get closer to a wonderful array of wildlife. There are many different seabirds and a visit to the islands’ seal colony is a highlight of the trip. You might even meet a dolphin, a porpoise or a whale. There will be plenty to keep every member of the family interested on this fascinating trip around a beautiful natural environment.
Visit the Hydroponicum – the garden of the future
For anyone interested in sustainable gardening, a visit to the Achiltibuie Garden (or Hydroponicum) is a must. In their green house you will see an amazing display of hydroponics, a system of growing plants without using soil. The green house is powered by micro wind turbines and the water is supplied via rainwater collection systems. They also maintain more traditional soil-based beds. You can purchase the sustainably grown salad leaves, herbs, fruit and vegetables at the shop. A great visit for aspiring gardeners, scientists and foodies alike.
Achnahaird beach, which is easily accessible via the road from Achiltibuie, was described by the Daily Mail as “A pearl of a beach on Scotland’s west coast”. It really does have everything you could wish for in a beach. Quite apart from the beautiful setting, overlooked by mountains, it boasts a gorgeous spread of sand and some fascinating rock pools full of sea creatures just crying out to be explored. The beach is surrounded by the Inverpolly Nature Reserve which is home to golden eagles, wild cats and pine martens. Kids will love this beach with its sand to play in and rock pools to investigate.
Walking along the stunning coastline of Achiltibuie is the simplest of pleasures in this beautiful place. You don’t need to go with a destination in mind, but a lovely coastal walk from Achiltibuie will take you to Reiff, where you can find a peninsula between the Loch of Reiff and the sea. The cliffs here are popular with rock climbers and present a spectacular seascape, with the waves breaking dramatically on the rocks. Have fun exploring this varied and beautiful coastline which has so much to discover.
Stac Pollaidh is the perfect destination for a family walk. As it overlooks Achiltibuie, you certainly won’t be able to ignore it and, although it isn’t a particularly high mountain, it has an imposing presence with its pinnacled ridge. It is fairly steep, although not dangerously so, but is a walk of less than 3 miles and the constructed path will take you almost to the summit. It is well worth the climb for the panoramic views from the mountain. It is easy to see why this is the North West Highland’s most visited mountain.
If your family loves being out on the water, this is a great place to explore in a kayak, getting you right into the heart of the landscape and bringing you up close to wildlife. Local company Hamlet Mountaineering will provide guided trips around the Summer Isles for both adults and children.
Visiting Achiltibuie can be a relaxing or exhilarating experience depending on what you choose to do. Relax and take in the scenery on a leisurely walk or find yourself climbing a mountain or kayaking across the coast. Kids will love the chance to explore nature up close and the whole family will find something special about Achiltibuie. To book your next self catering holiday in Scotland, check out our pricing and availability.