walkhighlands

Isle of Tiree

Isle of Tiree

Tiree is flat and fertile - hence its Gaelic name of Tir an Eòrna, the land of the barley. This may sound unpromising to walkers - and the island is perhaps best known for its windsurfing - but the truth is that the island is a gem, with plenty of interest for those who prefer to explore on foot.

The obvious chief attractions are the island's idyllic sandy beaches. Much of the land behind them is machair; a dry, fertile grassland formed by sand blowing over peat - a unique habitat for wild flowers (which are spectacular here in early summer) and birdlife - as well as being the most pleasant of terrain underfoot. Undoubtedly the best walks are along the coastline, alternating sandy stretches with the machair and rockier, rougher sections. There are plenty of places of interest too - from the ancient Ringing Stone and the impressive Dun Beag broch at Bhalla, to the complex of signal station buildings at Hynish which was the base for the Skerryvore Lighthouse. In the west also are the island's three small hills - their stature greatly enhanced by the flatness from which they rise.

Please note that much of Tiree is a crofting landscape with many grazing sheep and cattle (as well as being important for ground breeding birds). Dogs should be kept under close control at all times and preferably on a short lead during lambing season.

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Walking can be dangerous and is done entirely at your own risk. Information is provided free of charge; it is each walker's responsibility to check it and navigate using a map and compass.