Walk 1 – The Coigach Peninsula By Road

This walk is on made-up roads but gives a good introduction to the scenery of the Coigach Peninsula. To drive around is a poor substitute for walking.

Either start from the hotel or leave the car near the Polbain turn-off at the north-west end of the village. Walk down hill towards a shingle beach below Badentarbat and with splendid views across Badentarbat Bay to Tanera Mor, the largest of the Summer Isles. Do not take the side road along the pier but continue up the hill to Polbain with the highest of the peninsula hills, Meall an Fheadain on your right. Ignore the two side roads to the left at the end of the village, one before and one after the crest of the rise, and continue down to Loch a’ Mheallain on the far side of which rises Meall Dearg.

At the far end of the loch the road forks but do not turn left down to Old Dornie. Continue along the left side of Loch Camas an Fheidh with the views opening up of the sea and Loch an Altain Dhuibh, and walk through the village of Altandhu. The road rises again and at the end of the village turns right, the route continuing steeply until away from the sea with the peaks of Quinaig, Suilven, Cul Mor and Stac Pollaidh. The road leads gradually down to Brae of Achnahaird, Achnahaird Beach with its superb sand and rock pools being reached by a side road (well marked) to the left. At the foot of the hill the burn joining Lock Raa to Achnahaird Bay is crossed, and, more or less at once take the right fork back to Achiltibuie. The road stretches ahead, straight and level with Loch Raa and later Loch Vatachan to the right. On the far side of the lochs Fox Hill and later Meall an Fheadain rise, but the most exciting view is ahead with An Teallach (The Forge) appearing far to the south across Loch Broom and to Badentarbat Bay and the last mile back to Achiltibuie has some of the best scenery of the entire walk, Loch Broom stretching south east to Bienn Dearg and its satellites, Bienn nam Ban and Bienn Choblach across the loch, and the Coigach Hills behind the village, Cona Mheall (The Hill of Enchantment) dominating the scene.
DISTANCE: 9.5 Miles