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Explore the Ayrshire and Arran Coastal Paths - a Cicerone guidebook

Cover of The Ayrshire and Arran Coastal Paths
14 Jun 2011
17.2 x 11.6 x 1.0cm
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The Ayrshire and Arran Coastal Paths

by Keith Fergus
Book published by Cicerone Press

This guidebook describes the long distance walking route between Glenapp and Skelmorlie along the 150 mile Ayrshire coastline in 11 day stages, breaking at Ardrossan when the route circumnavigates the Isle of Arran. Suitable for most reasonably fit walkers, the route visits beautiful sandy beaches and secluded coves, open moorland and rocky trails.

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Size: 17.2 x 11.6 x 1.0cm
Weight: 200g

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The fantastic Ayrshire Coastal Path strikes its course for 94 miles from Glenapp in the south to Skelmorlie in the north. Add this to the Arran Coastal Way, which circumnavigates its way round that magical island for 60 miles, and what you have is truly magnificent long distance coastal walk.

The Ayrshire and Arran Coastal paths travel over some beaches (and beautiful beaches at that) but this route also journeys across a magnificent and diverse landscape that is home to some remarkable scenery. While a substantial portion of the route takes you away from the well-beaten track, it enables walkers to observe the rugged beauty of the coastline and enjoy its peace and quiet.  

The route can be walked in 11 days by an average walker but, despite being well waymarked, a substantial portion crosses some surprisingly remote ground, open moorland and rocky terrain, so reasonable map and navigational skills are a prerequisite. The route is well served by an excellent public transport infrastructure so it can be broken down into lovely one or two-day sections.

The Aryshire Coastal Path and Arran Coastal Way has primarily been written as a continuous route, although each section can be walked as a day route using the areas excellent public transport. Each day has been written to finish where accommodation, meals and provisions are easily attainable.

The routes can be walked at any time of the year, but the months between April and October offer the best conditions to enjoy them. The spring, summer and autumn months also provide the best opportunities to view the wonderful plants and animals en route and allow the walks to proceed in, hopefully, reasonable weather.

  • Seasons
    Spring and summer are the best time to walk the route for longer daylight hours and best opportunities to spot flowers and wildlife.
  • Centres
    Girvan, Ayr, Irvine, Troon, Ardrossan, Brodick, Whiting Bay, Lamlash, Largs, Skelmorlie
  • Difficulty
    no technical rock climbing ability required but some sections require a little scrambling over boulders on beaches; a good level of fitness needed to tackle the route in one go and some navigational skills in poorer weather as some of the route is quite remote.
  • Must See
    great cliffs, beautiful sandy beaches and secluded coves; extraordinary buildings such as Culzean Castle, Turnberry Lighthouse, Lochranza Castle and the Kennedy Mausoleum; historically important geological sites and several places indelibly linked to Robert Burns and Robert the Bruce.
We do not yet have any updates available for this book

We are always grateful to readers for information about any discrepancies between a guidebook and the facts on the ground. If you would like to send some information to us then please use our Feedback form. They will be published here following review by the author(s).


A short history of Ayrshire
A short history of Arran
Arran's geology
Getting there
Getting around
When to go
Food and drink
Keeping in touch
What to take
Waymarks and access
Emergency services
Using this guide
Day 1 Glenapp to Ballantrae
Day 2 Ballantrae to Girvan
Day 3 Girvan to Dunure
Day 4 Dunure to Troon
Day 5 Troon to Ardrossan
Day 6 Brodick to Lochranza
Day 7 Lochranza to Blackwaterfoot
Day 8 Blackwaterfoot to Kildonan
Day 9 Kildonan to Brodick
Day 10 Ardrossan to Largs
Day 11 Largs to Skelmorlie
Appendix A Route summary table
Appendix B Accommodation
Appendix C Public transport options
Appendix D Useful information
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