7 Bucket list ideas to try in the Argyll & the Isles!

Need bucket list inspiration? Perhaps you want to learn something new, take on a challenge or just spend some more time in the great outdoors. Argyll’s inspiring landscape of hills, glens and coastline make it the perfect setting for a host of outdoor adventures and challenges. There are all sorts of unique experiences to be had across Scotland’s Adventure Coast from close encounters with rare wildlife to feeling like you are on top of the world. Here’s a list of New Year’s resolutions, each one with an Argyll & the Isles twist!

Feel on top of the World

Explore the Arrochar Alps and climb The Cobbler, one of Scotland’s most enticing and iconic peaks. At 884 metres (2,900ft) in height, The Cobbler is only a Corbett, but it still has an impressive summit with incredible views. The true summit can be reached by ‘threading the needle’, which involves crawling through a gap (known as the needle) in the summit rock formation from the north side to the south. You’ll need good scrambling skills and a lot of nerve.

The CobblerStanding on top of the Cobbler, Credit: Kieran Duncan

Spot some sharks

Argyll & the Isles is known worldwide as a basking shark hotspot. During the summer months, these fantastic creatures migrate from their winter feeding grounds to Scotland. Take a trip with Oban-based Basking Shark Scotland where you can spot some basking sharks, and explore the waters with open water swimming, snorkelling and diving around the stunning coasts of Oban.

Basking Shark ScotlandBasking Shark Spotting in Argyll & the Isles, Credit: Basking Shark Scotland

Sea Adventures

Argyll & the Isles is home to beautiful scenery, and fantastic wildlife and is home to the world's third-largest whirlpool, Corryvreckan. Why not take a trip along Argyll's coastline with Sea adventures from Oban & Lorn with Seafari Adventures and Sealife adventures, to see the wonderful wildlife along the north of Argyll, then head on south to Portavadie where Fyne Sea Tours can provide a 2-hour tour around the coastline of Portavadie and Tarbert or why not explore the Isles, Islay Sea Adventures offer the chance to visit Corryvreckan whirlpool and the fantastic opportunity to spot rare sea life along the way.

Seafari Adventures tours out on the water, Credit: Seafari Adventures

Explore the Kintyre 66

The Kintyre 66 (K66) is an exciting new route that will help you discover one of Scotland’s most scenic regions, and what so inspired Sir Paul McCartney all those years ago. With its pristine natural setting, unique coastal character and rich history, you‘ll never run out of things to do in Kintyre and Gigha. Dine on the freshest seafood and savour some of the world’s most famous Scotch whiskies, amazing wildlife and adventures to explore along the way. The Kintyre 66 follows a 66-mile loop around Kintyre on the A83 and B842 public roads, with 6 spurs allowing you to venture even further. Take the Atlantic road south with stunning views to Islay and Jura, and then up the edge of the Kilbrannan Sound overlooking Arran, or why not travel in the other direction, taking time to enjoy all the area has to offer—the choice is yours!

Kintyre 66 Scenery, Credit: Wild about Argyll

Discover Argyll & the Isles Distilleries

Argyll & the Isles is famed for its range of distilleries for whisky and gin, producing some of the most popular single malts whiskies and uniquely infused gins in the world. Most of these historic distilleries offer guided tours ending with a large dram, which is perfect to quench the thirst after the tour. It’s a great way to discover how the history, culture and landscapes of the region have shaped its distinctive whiskies and gins. The gin distilleries of Argyll & the Isles go into great depths about their rich recipes and unique botanicals which are infused in their gins. There are several distilleries and also many breweries across Argyll & the Isles, which should be experienced. So why not try out our Spirit and beer trail, which guides you to some unique locations around Argyll & the Isles. If spirit and beer, ain't for you, we also have several other taste trails from coffee and Cake to Seafood, Check them out here!

Glen Scotia Distillery in Campbeltown, Credit: Wild about Argyll

Delve deeper into Scottish history

Kilmartin Glen in mid-Argyll is one of Scotland’s richest and most important prehistoric landscapes. Within six miles of Kilmartin village, there are over 800 historic monuments, cairns, standing stones, stone circles and rock art dating back over 5000 years that have been recorded within this area. Walk up the rocky outcrop of Dunadd, the capital of the Ancient Kingdom of Dalriada. Legend has it that the first Kings of Scotland were crowned here. 

Kilmartin Village, Credit: Pauline Guillouzic Photography

Walk a long distance

Argyll is home to some awe-inspiring great trails that traverse its landscape. Weave your way along these trails and explore glens, climb hills and discover an intricate coastline with myriad islands. Many of the great trails link up, so you can connect them up for an epic route. Try the Loch Lomond & Cowal Way, Kintyre Way, Three Lochs Way, West Island Way, and John Muir Way. Why not check out Robin McKelvie's Blog on Walking in Argyll & the Isles or our top 7 Winter Walks. Grab your boots and get ready to explore! 

Walking on the Kintyre Way, Credit: Robin McKelvie