The Scottish Series - An Iconic Scottish Sailing Competition
The Scottish Series is a fantastic weekend of yacht racing based around Tarbert on Loch Fyne, one of Argyll’s most scenic natural harbours. Organised by the Clyde Cruising Club, it’s one of the biggest yachting event in Britain attracting boats from across the UK. Racing takes place over four days amid breath-taking Scottish scenery. It’s a fantastic spectacle to watch from shore. And there’s as much fun to be had on land as at sea.
You’ll find a festival atmosphere in Tarbert, with packed pubs and plenty of socialising. If you’re not a sailor, you can still experience the Scottish Series. Here’s how!
A stunning spectacle
The yachts make for a magnificent sight and there are great vantage points from which to watch the racing. Depending on the day’s racing programme and sailing conditions, the boats will head up or down Loch Fyne. The Shell Beach is probably your best bet for watch the action. This lovely beach - formed entirely from the shells of clams and queenies – is at the end of Pier Road. Or head up to Tarbert Castle to watch the boats going out and coming in at the end of the day. You’ll get a fabulous view looking down to Tarbert Harbour and the yachts below. From here, there are way- marked walks further up the hillside, including the first section of the Kintyre Way. Again, you’ll find some great vantage points.
Another option is to catch the Calmac ferry from Tarbert to Portavadie, on the other side of Loch Fyne. It’s a 30-minute crossing and offers some great views of the boats. The complex has an award-winning marina, restaurants, shop and wonderful Spa & Leisure Experience where you can watch the racing from the outdoor infinity pool.
Shoreside fun: Pubs, Seafood & Live Music
The pubs and restaurants that surround Tarbert’s harbour are full of life during the Scottish Series. You’ll find the bars packed with crews sharing yarns with fellow sailors after a day’s racing. Many of the hotels put on live music and you’ll be treated to a warm welcome and plenty of west coast bonhomie. There’s plenty on during the day too, with live music and kids’ activities.
Tarbert’s fishing fleet lands some of the best seafood in the world, plucked fresh from the surrounding cold Atlantic waters and sea lochs. Make sure you sample some of this super fresh seafood and shellfish in the village’s pubs and restaurants. Starfish Restaurant is an excellent place to tuck into a seafood platter. The Scottish Series weekend is a busy one though, so be sure to book ahead.
The Starfish Restaurant is known for its fantastic local seafood.
Discover the Surrounding Highlights
Tarbert is an excellent base from which to explore Kilmartin Glen and Kintyre. Head north to visit the historic wonders of Kilmartin Glen and drive onwards to Oban. Head south to the Kintyre peninsula. From here, you can catch ferries to the islands of Gigha or Islay and Jura.