Sailing Holidays in the Firth of Clyde
Home to some of the deepest coastal waters in Britain, the Firth of Clyde offers magnificent sailing combined with out-of-this world panoramas.
Sailing in the Firth of Clyde
Often overlooked in favour of the more renown Hebrides, the Firth of Clyde is the route-way to Scottish sailing and offers a wide variety of sailing areas. From lengthy narrow lochs to open-waters and sheltered passages, there is plenty to occupy the adventure traveller.
The area is made up of over 40 islands and ‘skerries’ and as only 4 of these are inhabited, a sailing holiday in the Firth of Clyde provides a fantastic opportunity to experience the remote, untamed side of Scotland. Each island is completely different to the next, some proffer ancient towering castles and craggy outcrops whilst others see gentle heather-clad hills tumble down onto power soft sandy beaches. With so much to uncover the Firth of Clyde is best explored under sail. Join Maybe as she departs from Greenock, sailing holiday itineraries here generally take in the beautiful Kyles of Bute, a narrow sea channel separating the northern end of the Isle of Bute from the Cowal peninsula in Argyll. An Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, it is home to a variety of seabird, feral goats, glorious views and is said to be one of the prettiest sailing passages in Britain.
The Isle of Arran
The Isle of Arran which is often referred to as ‘Scotland in miniature’ thanks to it’s clearly visible highland and lowland landscape. One of the larger and better known islands in the Firth of Clyde, renown for its fabulous whisky distilleries which are all set in picturesque bays backed by rolling, lush green hills, fringed with golden shingle shores and dotted with pretty cottages. Explore ashore to discover the rich history here from the standing stones on Machie moor to the imposing Lochranza tower house teetering on the waters edge.
The historical sites are not limited to the Isle of Arran. Visit the Isle of Bute to travel through time from medieval ruins through to impressive Victorian architecture and botanical gardens. A mere 15×2.5 miles in size, the Isle of Bute packs much into its small size, from a Gothic mansion and Victorian Fernery to gorgeous hills, rugged moorland and tranquil sandy shores.
Aside from island-life, sailing in the Firth of Clyde also allows sailors to venture to breathtaking lochs including the Holy Loch, a beautiful sea loch which serves as the gateway to the well-known Loch Lomond as well as the Trossachs National Park. Steeped in a history that dates back to the 6th Century, this peaceful loch is lined with idyllic beaches and home to numerous forest trails, each boasting glorious views across the water. Those feeling adventurous can climb the 1262ft Kilmun Hill which guarantees unrivalled views across to the Clyde Muirshiel Regional Park, Scotland’s largest regional park. Those seeking a less strenuous day can meander the Benmore Botanical Gardens and marvel at the Giant Sequoia trees, some of which exceed 148ft!
The southern Hebrides
A sailing holiday in the Firth of Clyde also enables access to the southern Hebrides and if tides, winds and weather are in our favour, vessels may head to Jura and Islay. The infamous Gulf of Correyvreckan divides the two islands and is home to the world’s third-largest whirlpool, Scarba which can be safely viewed from the cliffs on Jura. Both islands are incredibly beautiful, with Jura’s tranquillity home to a wild deer population of 5,000 which considerably outnumbers its 200 inhabitants!