Mallaig is a haven for sailors wanting to explore the stunning coastline of north west Scotland and Mallaig Marina is the ideal base to explore some of the most beautiful and remote scenery in Scotland. To the west of Mallaig are the Cocktail Isles Eigg, Muck, Rum, Canna – all within easy reach – as is the Isle of Skye, with its mystical and atmospheric Cuillin hills. If you are a Munro ‘bagger’, head for the hamlet of Inverie and the Knoydart hills.
North of Mallaig is the Knoydart peninsula, often described as ‘Scotland’s last wilderness’. This area (Loch Nevis) is a haven for wildlife with dolphins and porpoises a common sight and they often follow sailing vessels. Minke whales and basking sharks are also regular visitors to the minch depending on the time of year. Closer to shore, sea and golden eagles can be spotted along with the occasional osprey. Of course, seals are in abundance and otters can often be seen on the shoreline. Knoydart is home to the UK’s largest village not connected to a road or rail network, Inverie which can claim to have the most remote public house in the UK. The Old Forge pub has 10 private moorings and dinghies can be left on the beach by the pub. Local seafood is a speciality.
Once moored, Mallaig is an ideal place to either stop for a night or two or to use as a sailing base. The village offers restaurants to suit all budgets, with locally caught seafood always on the menu. There are two main hotels in Mallaig – the West Highland Hotel and the Marine Hotel, both offering accommodation and restaurants. There is also B&B accommodation both in the village and surrounding area. There are several pubs in Mallaig and it’s not uncommon, especially during the summer months to hear live traditional music locally. For those looking for something historical, there is the Mallaig Heritage Centre which details all of the area’s long and fascinating history, including the port’s long association with the fishing industry; coming of the railwaiy in 1901; and the area’s connection with Bonnie Prince Charlie and the Jacobite uprising.
Mallaig also boasts a swimming pool with fitness suite, spa, sauna and solarium. For those arriving by boat and wishing to explore inland, local taxis can provide a tour of the area or can simply drop you where you want to go and can pick you up again at a designated time and place. Ideal for sailors wishing to explore the hills and glens. Should you want a guided boat trip to Knoydart or the Isles, there are morning, afternoon and full day excursions from Mallaig pier throughout the summer.
Mallaig is also an ideal stop off for sailors needing to replenish supplies. There is a Co-op store and Spar shop, both supplying a full range of fresh provisions along with gift shops, confectioners and a local tourist information centre. There is also a chemist, doctors and medical centre in the village. The local ship chandler Johnston Bros has an extensive range of marine products to suit most requirements.