Springside B&B Tarbert Argyll

View of Tarbert harbour


Almost one of Scotland's best kept secrets, Tarbert is situated at the top of the Kintyre peninsula and quite often missed by people who travel north from Inveraray.
Those who discover it will be well rewarded as the area is a super place to stay to explore the sheer scenic beauty and rich historic heritage of this part of the country.

There are many events in the town and local area throughout the year including yacht races in May, the Seafood Festival in July and the Music Festival in September.

Up on the hill you can spot the ruins of Tarbert Castle (pictured right) dating from the 15th century. The original castle has links with King Robert the Bruce.

We have books and leaflets in the house to help you plan your stay here and more information is also available from Tarbert tourist office.

Tarbert Castle

What to see and do

Local Events for 2018
(dates subject to confirmation)
Kintyre Songwriters Festival 4 - 6 May
Loch Fyne Food Fair 12 - 13 May
Campbeltown Malts Festival 23 - 25 May
Scottish Sailing Series, Tarbert 25 - 28 May
Mull of Kintyre Half Marathon and 10K 26 - 27 May
FyneFest (music and food), Cairndow 1 - 3 June
MidFest music festival, Campbeltown 15 - 16 June
Tarbert Seafood Festival 7 - 8 July
Inveraray Highland Games 17 July
Tarbert Traditional Boat Festival 20 - 22 mid July
Tarbert Fair 26 - 28 July
West Highland Yachting Week, Craobh 27 July - 3 August
Campbeltown & Kintyre Agricultural Show tbc 3 August
Mid Argyll Show at Kilmory, Lochgilphead 11 August
TT 16mm Film Festival mid August tbc
Mull of Kintyre Music Festival, Campbeltown 8 - 12 August
Tarbert Music Festival 14 - 16 September
CowalFest - Walking and Outdoors Festival 6 - 12 October
Tarbert Book Festival 26 - 28 October
Christmas Fair early December

There are many opportunities for sailing, walking, cycling, fishing and golf, and for bird watchers the region is especially attractive.

Just 20 miles from Springside is Kilmartin Glen - one of the richest archaeological areas in the country. Many prehistoric and medieval monuments can be found including burial cairns, stone circles, cup-and-ring engravings and carved gravestones. Visit the excellent centre at Kilmartin House Museum for more information.

There are also plenty of castles around here including the ruins of Carnasserie Castle. Built in 1565 and now owned by the National Trust for Scotland (admission free).

Kilmartin gravestones Carnasserie Castle Inveraray Jail

Crarae Gardens

You can also take a trip to Inveraray with its Castle and award-winning Jail Museum and Court house which is less than 40 miles from Tarbert.
Along the way, Crarae Gardens (National Trust of Scotland) sit beside Loch Fyne.

Tarbert sits at the 'neck' of the Kintyre Peninsula which has 80 miles of sandy beaches, 5 golf courses, some of the best sailing waters in Britain, over 200 species of birds and an enormous variety of wild flowers. Rich in history and unspoilt scenery, the area was frequented by kings such as Robert the Bruce and saints such as Columba. The wealth of places to visit here includes:

Inveraray Castle
coast of Kintyre
  • Saddell Abbey - burial place of Somerled, progenitor of the clan Donald and dynasty of the Lord of the Isles.
  • Skipness Castle - once the stronghold of the clan Campbell.
  • St. Columba's Footprints - carved into the rock at Southend to commemorate where he landed from Ireland in 563 AD
  • Historic churchyards and carved crosses and slabs.
  • Standing stones, cairns, forts and duns.
  • Disused farming townships.
  • The Mull of Kintyre - made famous by the Paul McCartney song.

Ferry Trips

Cowal & Bute
The short crossing from Tarbert to Portavadie lands you on the scenic Cowal Peninsula where you can drive over to Tighnabruaich and Dunoon or take the little ferry over to the Isle of Bute where the Victorian gothic splendour of Mount Stuart is well worth a visit.

Mount Stuart

Known as 'Scotland in miniature', the island is a wonderful place to visit and the easiest way to get there is via the ferry from Claonaig which is just 10 miles from Springside. In just 30 minutes you land in Lochranza with its ruined castle and whisky distillery. From there you can easily tour the island, driving around the coast road to see the Machrie Moor standing stones, Brodick Castle and Gardens and much more!

Lochranza castle

Just 20 minutes across the water from Tayinloan (less than 20 miles from Springside), Gigha is famed for its flowers and is often called 'God's Island'. Despite its small size, it has a surprising number of historic sites to visit. Achamore Gardens were established in 1944 by Sir James Horlick and there are now 50 acres of beautiful woodland gardens including exotic plants and trees, walled garden and greenhouses.

Achamore Gardens

The ferry departs from Kennacraig which is just 5 miles from Springside. Many people go to spend a week or more on Islay to unwind and get away from it all. The island is popular with various species of birds and is also well known for being home to no less than 7 whisky distilleries! As well as the lovely beaches and historic ruins, don't miss the unusual Round Church.
If you only have a short time to spend in the region, you can catch the early morning ferry to Port Ellen, then get the local bus service across the island to Port Askaig in time for the return ferry back to Kennacraig. In July and August, the ferry company organises its own 'Grand Tour of Islay' with a guided coach trip. Alternatively, you can just go for an afternoon or evening cruise there and back, admiring the views over to Ireland in clear weather.

After taking the ferry to Port Askaig, it is just a short crossing over the Sound of Islay. This wild island with its rugged coastline is dominated by mountains called the Paps of Jura and is home to more deer than people!

On Wednesdays you can take a day trip to Colonsay on the ferry from Kennacraig via Islay. Keep a look out for seals, porpoise and other wildlife. A local bus tour of the island is available during the summer. This will show you some of the historic sites and spectacular sandy beaches.

For an even longer cruise, you can go all the way to Oban and back in a day (Wednesdays only) passing Islay, Jura, Colonsay, the Garvellachs, Mull and Kerrera. Known as the 'Gateway to the Isles', the busy port of Oban is a popular springboard for exploring Mull and Iona or heading further north to Fort William and the Highlands. By road, it is just an hour's drive from Tarbert.

Dunoon ferry Kyles of Bute Tighnabruaich, Cowal

Accommodation Location Map How to Book Homepage

For further information or to make a booking / reservation
please contact us direct:

Alison and Donald Marshall
Springside B&B
Pier Road, Tarbert, Argyll PA29 6UE, Scotland
Tel: +44 (0)1880 820 413
Email: marshall.springside@virgin.net

Scottish Thistle

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