Mull is the third largest of the islands that make up the Inner Hebrides. It has a 300 miles coastline and stunning scenery. Mull is also famed for its diverse wildlife and provides opportunities to spot otters, dolphins, whales, red deer and, if you are lucky golden eagles or sea eagles to name but a few.
Major General Lachlan Macquarrie’s Mausoleum
Situated just west of Salen. Macquarrie was born on Ulva in 1761. He is regarded as the father of Australia and was Governor General of New South Wales from 1809-20. The National Trust for Australia maintains the museum.
In the churchyard of the ruined chapel (found on the road between Salen and Craignure) are two large grave slabs supposed to depict a chief of the Duart Macleans and his wife, who allegedly dabbled in witchcraft and could not, therefore, be buried on holy ground.
The Clearances and Deserted Villages
Between 1846 and 1861 60,000 people left the west of Scotland and the islands. They were either forcibly evicted or left voluntarily looking for a better life. (Not all ruined villages are Clearance villages.) Remains of these villages can be seen around the island. One can be seen just outside Dervaig on the road to Salen. Another can be seen on the walk through the woods at Langamull (on the right hand side of the road before you come to Calgary. There is parking.) Go through one gate and when you get to the second it is sign-posted on your right. It is a walk through the forest but there are good paths.
There is another very interesting one at Inivea. It sits on the hill that runs along the right side of Calgary beach. Follow the path from the car park and you will come close to the old pier and take a barely noticeable path up the hill. Keep on going past the modern shed. When you look down on the remains of the village with its walls of rounded corners, it is quite an impressive sight.
Mull Cheddar/Glengorm Castle
Try some of Mull’s award-winning cheese. From Dervaig take the Tobermory road. As you near Tobermory you will see a sign for the cheese. Take the left turn signposted Glengorm. The farm is signposted on the left along this road.
Or you can drive straight on to Glengorm Castle (which is not open to visitors). It has a pottery and coffee shop and country walks.
Beaton Cairn and Cross
Situated beside the 2nd passing place west of the Free Church of Pennyghael. The Beatons were famous Mull herbalists and doctors to the Macleans.
Seat of the chief of the Macleans, the photogenic castle stands on a cliff guarding the Sound of Mull. Also used in several films (Entrapment, When Eight Bells Toll). The castle is 1½ miles from Craignure on the road to Iona.
Tobermory’s harbour front, with its brightly painted houses, is instantly recognisable and much photographed. For small children it is, of course Balamory. However, the new ‘star’ of Tobermory is often to be seen lazing in the sunshine on any car roof – The Tobermory Cat, a friendly ginger cat with his own line in books.
In Tobermory you will find Tobermory Distillery making the Tobermory Malt Whiskey, a shop and cafe selling handmade chocolates, a bookshop, a silversmith, the Isle of Mull Soap shop to name but a few.
An Tobar is the Art Centre just up behind the main street. It has exhibitions, displays, puts on live events and films and has a cosy café.
Mull Museum will take you through the history and geology of Mull with a fine display of old photographs.
Aros Park has some lovely woodland walks and spectacular waterfalls as well as a great view of Tobermory Bay. Take the road out of Tobermory towards Craignure. You will pass the Mull Pottery and café (on your right), signs for Aros Park are on the left. There is parking. Or you can park at the car park (Ledaig) in Tobermory and take the path up between the new harbour building and the bar.
What they meant and why they are there may be a mystery but there are a few to be found on Mull. The nearest are just outside Dervaig on the Tobermory road. On the brow of the first hill is a car park and viewpoint from which you can easily see Killoran House. From the car park you will see woodland which is fenced but you should notice the gate. The stones are just through this gate.
There is a standing stone out at Quinish that resembles a large stooped and cloaked figure from certain angles. Drive through the village of Dervaig taking the left bend at the top of the road in front of the pink house. Follow this road and before you come to a cattle grid there is parking on the right. Leave your car there and follow the same road up through the gateposts that mark Quinish House. The track goes woodland, and is a fairly good one (except if it has rained heavily). Stout walking shoes are advisable. You can carry right on to amazing views out to sea at Quinish Point.
There are also standing stones on the walk down to the sea at Glengorm.
Leave Killoran and turn left. About three miles along this road is Calgary Bay with its lovely white sand. There is a car park and a walk that goes along the side of the bay.
Calgary Cafe gives access to a specially created walk through a beech wood with displays of sculpture.
The Old Byre Heritage Centre
Going back towards Dervaig from Killoran you pass a sign for Torloisk and The Old Byre. There you will find out about Mull’s history and its varied wildlife. There is also a café. Open Wednesdays to Sundays.