Looking across to the Knoydart peninsular from the track up to Armadale
Looking across the Sound of Sleat to the Knoydart peninsular from the track up to Armadale Hill on the Sleat peninsular, Isle of Skye

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Route No. 271 - Friday 17 October 2008
Armadale Castle to Armadale Hill
view point circuit - 5 km
Sleat Peninsular
Isle of Skye, Scotland . . .

Ordnance Survey route map on the Landranger series map base

Map: Ordnance Survey Explorer 412 Skye -Sleat


My wife and I are having a week in a holiday cottage in Portree on the Isle of Skye in Scotland. The big Skye mountains are way beyond my abilities now, but we are finding some short walks with magnificent scenery for very little effort, so I'm adding some notes of our little strolls to my walking diary. The weather for the whole week was very mixed with intense dark squally showers and periods of sunshine and bright blue sky. This mix gave us some wonderful lighting effects with rainbows, bright sunshine on the autumn vegetation with a black cloud backdrop and sunlight streaming through the clouds to light up patches of the sea. It was a very enjoyable week.

Looking across the sound of Sleat from the Clan Donald Centre at Armadale
Looking across the sound of Sleat from the Clan Donald Centre at Armadale

Armadale Castle
Armadale Castle

From the car park we took the path through the grounds in front of the castle which is now a ruin. Just beyond the castle we turned right and then left to follow a path through the woods.

Today we drove down the Sleat peninsular to the Clan Donald Centre at Armadale (map ref. NG639044) There is an entrance charge, but not too expensive within our holiday budget.

Looking towards Mallaig from Armadale Castle
Looking towards Mallaig from Armadale Castle

Woodland path above the A851
Woodland path above the A851

We continued along the woodland path for over 1.5 km to map ref. NG644056. Here we passed through a gate in the deer fence around the estate and turned left to follow a path up the hillside to map ref. NG641053.

running above and parallel to the coast road (A851) along the peninsular. This was a very pleasant path with views across the Sound of Sleat to the mainland.

Woodland path above the A851
Woodland path above the A851

Climbing up towards Armadale Farm
Climbing up towards Armadale Farm

Knoydart. We followed the farm road to Armadale farm at map ref. NG640050.

We passed back through the deer fence and there was a seat with a fine view across the sound to Mallaig and Knoydart.

Lichen on an old hawthorn
Lichen on an old hawthorn

The sunshine and showers gave us frequent bright rainbows
The sunshine and showers gave us frequent bright rainbows
Looking across the Sound of Sleat from Armadale Hill
Looking across the Sound of Sleat from Armadale Hill

Moorland path to Armadale Hill
Moorland path to Armadale Hill

At this point we walked through the gate in the deer fence to follow a track across the moor for about 800m to a wooden pole on the top of Armadale Hill, map ref. NG627049. (A hillock or knoll is "cnoc" in Gaelic).

At the southern edge of the farm we turned right off the farm road to follow a path across a field to join another farm track leading from the farm through the woods to the edge of the open moor at map ref. NG632048.

On top of Armadale Hill
On top of Armadale Hill

Coming back through the woods to the Clan Donald Centre
Coming back through the woods to the Clan Donald Centre
Coming back through the woods to the Clan Donald Centre
Coming back through the woods to the Clan Donald Centre
Coming back through the woods to the Clan Donald Centre
Coming back through the woods to the Clan Donald Centre
Autumn colours in the woods
Autumn colours in the woods
Woodland near Armadale Castle
Woodland near Armadale Castle
From here there is a wonderful view all round. The weather was kind to us and there was a fine bright sunny spell whilst we were at the top of the hill. After admiring the views for some time we retraced our steps to the deer gate back into the woods. From there we followed the path down the hillside into the castle grounds and back to the car park. The whole walk had been just over 5 km and it had taken us almost two and a half hours including our long stops to look at the scenery. We finished off with a coffee at the visitor centre before a sightseeing drive back to Portree.
Looking across the Sound of Sleat to Knoydart from the shore at the Mallaig ferry pier
Looking across the Sound of Sleat to Knoydart from the shore at the Mallaig ferry pier