Ardtalla Beach - One of Islay's Hidden Gems

There is always a certain risk involved when you tell people about a very beautiful place you've been to. Chances are that you meet these very people you told it to on your next visit or find out that the place you told about is now a busy and crowded place. Because I think this is a very unlikely scenario for Islay I'm more than happy to share a wee secret with you all. I want to share a stunning place which I personally regard as one of Islay's hidden gems. Not because it was the first time I've seen the place in spring but more because you don't expect to find something this beautiful right after another very beautiful place on Islay. It proves that the island has so much to offer!

Today I want to take you to a beach which is in one word stunning. You can find this beach at Ardtalla just beyond Claggain Bay. The soft sand of the beach is almost white, it "sings" just like the Singing Sands beach near Port Ellen and the water has that beautiful mix of blue and green colours, well it did when we were there on a glorious and sunny spring day in May 2010. To access this hidden gem you need to take the road, assuming you are not accessing the beach by canoe, from Port Ellen to Ardbeg and continue driving until you reach Claggain Bay. At the end of Claggain Bay the road takes you up a wee hill where you'll find a small car park. For access to the beach, a walk of 15 minutes, I recommend to use this car park. From there follow the main road on foot to the left, then to the right where there's a gate. As soon as you cross the gate there's a field on your right. Follow it all the way down and the first thing you'll see is the view I have prepared in the panorama image below. Make sure to follow the "continue reading link" below the panorama image, there are more beautiful pictures to see....

Panorama Image of Ardtalla Beach - Click the image for the full panorama

Continue reading....

The beach stretches about half a mile to the north-east and a quarter mile to the south-east and is a joy to discover. When we visited the beach we were alone, which is by the way often the case on Islay's beaches, and we walked all the way to the north-easter part of the beach. The colour of the water, the rocks, the white sand, the birds and other wildlife such as seals and the lush vegetation which starts where the beach ends made it a wee bit of paradise for us. If you're on Islay and you have one of those glorious days I can highly recommend this hidden gem.

Tag: beach ardtalla