Isle of Lismore
Escaping to an island has always been an attractive option for some people, whether for enjoying a complete break from the noise and stress of modern living with its cars, roads and shops or for just experiencing the same facilities in a smaller, simpler setting.
On a rare occasion you can be lucky enough to enjoy the best of both worlds. This is certainly the case on the island of Lismore where stands Achuaran House. To reach the island there is a choice of a short car ferry from Oban or, even shorter, a foot passenger ferry from Port Appin about 20 miles further up the west coast. The island itself is crossed by only one small single-track road.
Lismore has one well-stocked shop selling a wide range of goods; there is also a café/restaurant in the small but first-rate Heritage Centre and all visitors are welcome to the ceilidhs and dances held frequently in the local hall. Foodies will be particularly attracted to the Pierhouse Restaurant and Aird’s Hotel, both rated among the leading restaurants in Scotland. Both are situated in Port Appin on the far side of the foot ferry. At a moderate £1.50 per person the ferry provides convenient (and breathalyser-free) transportation after an evening of good food and wine.
The house is well situated about a mile from the Port Appin ferry pier. With a backdrop of woodland Achuaran House has superb views across the sea to the mainland on the other side. Inside, it is roomy and comfortable in the style of a traditional and cosy farmhouse where guests of all ages are free to unwind and enjoy the beautiful surroundings.
The sloping garden (2 acres) at Achuaran lies within a low wall and is laid to grass with woodland to the rear and side while the sea shore is just across the single track road in front of the house. Parents will be happy to know that children can safely play, cycle and explore here (although remember that the sea is nearby). Cycles can be securely stored. As the island is reasonably flat cycling is a good way of getting about and cycles also can be hired here. There is fishing for mackerel off the rocks or you can explore along the raised shore and cliffs.
Lismore is of both historic and geological interest. Inhabited since Neolithic times it was occupied by the Picts some 2000 years ago as evidenced by the well preserved Broch at Tirfuit. An arrowhead of Appin stone dating from 3500BC was found in 1974 and is now in the Heritage Centre. The name of the first Viking prince to build a stronghold here is remembered in Coeffin Castle and the walk over to the castle is full of interest.
The geological interest lies in the fact that Lismore is composed of Dalradian limestone with basalt dykes crossing from south-east to north-west. Consequently, (and to the joy of naturalists) the absence of mountains and peat bogs gives rise to fertile ground, home to many species of flora and fauna not to be found anywhere else.
Heating is by electricity and open fire. Bedlinen, towels (not beach towels), and electricity are included in the rental. Up to two well behaved pets are welcome by arrangement. Smoking is not permitted within the house. A refundable householder's deposit will be required.
Accommodation (sleeps 8):
- Sitting room with open fire, TV/DVD
- Dining room
- Kitchen with electric cooker, microwave, fridge-freezer etc.
- Utility Room with sink
- Laundry room with washing machine and tumble drier
- Shower room with shower, WC and wash basin
- Double bedroom
- Twin bedroom with en suite shower
- Twin bedroom
- Twin bedroom with cot
- Bathroom with bath/shower, WC and wash basin