40 Lochs to Kayak in Argyll & the Isles

Are you ready for an exciting paddling challenge this summer?

Then why not start to experience the 40 Lochs here in Argyll & the Isles, ready to welcome you and your kayak or canoe!

Argyll & the Isles is home to some of Scotland's most stunning and accessible fresh water and sea lochs and we're pretty sure you will love a paddle in them, on your kayak or canoe! Working with local experienced paddlers Geoff and Vonna, we have created a list of 40 lochs across Argyll and the Isles for you to explore and see Scotland's Adventure Coast from a different perspective.

Use the interactive map below or our area-by-area list to plan your 40 Loch adventures. Zoom in to locate the lochs across Argyll & the Isles and click on each to get the name, length and type of loch; sea or freshwater. Start your adventure here!

Two key tips

The 40 Lochs vary in length and ease of access. Some are sheltered and others very exposed – please do your homework so you know what to expect. And as all keen paddlers know, be aware of the local weather forecast and tide times for when you will be paddling. Understand your own level of competence for the conditions you will encounter on each Loch and ensure everyone paddling with you does likewise.

Some inspiration to help you tick off the top 40!

There's no rules at all. Set this as a personal challenge to yourself, or with friends and family.  It's easy to take part and most of all gives you the perfect excuse to come back and try something new and different!

  • You can kayak or canoe any of the listed lochs, in ANY order, and in your own time.
  • There's no time limit at all. Do as many as you like this summer, or take a few years, it's entirely up to you!
  • Each paddle is not a race. In fact, we encourage you to take your time and soak up the scenery.
  • You must participate safely at all times by following water safety guidance and letting someone know where you are and expected return time.
  • You can include lochs you've paddled previously too to contribute to your top 40!

40 Lochs Kayak Challenge DIRECTORY

Here is a list of our 40 lochs by name, and grouped by destination. What will be your first 10 to kayak?

Loch Striven

Dunoon and Cowal
Loch Goil
Loch Eck
Holy Loch
Loch Riddon

Inveraray Knapdale Kilmartin and Crinan
Loch Glashan
Loch Fyne
Loch Caolisport
Loch Sween
Loch Craignish

Islay, Jura and Colonsay
Loch Gruinart Loch Indaal Loch Tarbert, Jura

Kintyre and Gigha
West Loch
Lussa Loch
Campbeltown Loch

Loch Lomond and Clyde Sea Lochs
Loch Long
Gare Loch
Loch Lomond

Mull and Iona
Loch Frisa
Loch na Keal
Loch Ba
Loch Scridain
Loch Buie
Loch na Lathaich
Loch a' Chumhainn
Loch Tuath
Loch Spelve

Oban and Lorn
Loch Avich
Loch Feochan
Loch Awe
Loch Etive
Loch Creran
Loch Linnhe
Loch Tulla
Loch Melfort