The 2021 Arran Mountain Festival programme will be uploaded soon, with booking lines due to open in early 2021.

Holy Isle Mountain Walk

Please note that there is an additional charge of £12 for the ferry service across to/from Holy Isle.

A great opportunity to get magnificent views across Arran and parts of the west of Scotland from the highest point of Holy Isle and to find out all about Arran's pioneering No Take Zone and it's amazing underwater life. We will provide you with a fascinating insight into the Community of Arran Seabed Trust's (COAST) campaigning and marine conservation work. The walk leaders are Lucy Wallace who runs Arran Wild Walks and Jenny Stark, COAST’s Marine Outreach Officer..

wallace coast_logo

Holy Isle's name is a reference to St Molaise, a monk who made his home here living in a cave. Currently the island is a Buddhist retreat, so the walking route will be clockwise over the high points of the island returning to the ferry by the shore.

 | Overview


Highest Point Gained
314m - Mullach Mòr  

Total Ascent

Walk Duration

Rough ground, some steep sections  

Technical Rating
Easy scrambling, elements of exposure, some rough terrain.

Endurance Rating
Long distance, some steep ascent and descent, moderate amount of stamina needed in bursts, suitable for reasonably fit walkers. Have had recent experience of walking for 5-7 hours? Have you recently walked up (and down) hills without physical too much distress? If your answer is "No", we'd guess you'd be happier doing a walk rated a level lower than the one you’ve just read! As noted previously, we're into FUN so we don't want you to miss out by overdoing it.

£18 (+ ferry fare)  

Sunday 17 May 2020

Meeting Time

Meeting Place
Apart from the Goatfell night walk, all walks/runs start and finish at Arran Adventure, located next to the Playbarn in the grounds of the Auchrannie Spa Resort in Brodick. Transport is provided from there. Click here for a map.

 | Photo Gallery

 | Walk description

The island, although only 3km long, rises to 300m in height. The walk starts from the pier, where someone from the Buddhist retreat will welcome you to the island. From the outset the walk starts heading up hill, firstly through a field and then woodland and bracken before heading up a rough path to Mullach Beag. Along this rough path, take some time to look over the northern part of Lamlash Bay, Scotland’s first No Take Zone. Also look out for wild Soay sheep, goats and Eriskay ponies, some of the last survivors of the native ponies of the Western Isles of Scotland. From Mullach Beag take in the magnificent views along the ridge to Mullach Mòr, the highest point on the island. A very steep descent on a rough path, with cliffs on either side. On the coastal path back to the ferry, look out for the Buddhist paintings.

 | Advised Kit List

Essential hill gear

  • NO jeans – anyone wearing jeans will not be allowed to start the walk, and no refund will be possible
  • Stout hill walking boots
  • Appropriate walking trousers, top layers and fleece – preferably no cotton layers
  • Waterproof (not showerproof) trousers
  • Waterproof (not showerproof) jacket
  • Spare layers
  • Woollen or fleece hat
  • Gloves
  • Packed lunch and drink - please consider the use of re-useable water bottles and food wrapping.
  • Any personal medicines
  • For the Goat Fell night walk: Head torch and spare batteries

Other recommended kit

  • Sun cream and insect repellent
  • Camera
  • Binoculars
  • Spare socks
  • Blister plasters

The 2021 Arran Mountain Festival programme will be uploaded soon, with booking lines due to open in early 2021.