There are a number of ways to travel to Argyll & The Isles from the south. Take the M74 up to Glasgow and then join the A82 which runs alongside Loch Lomond. Here you can join the A83 towards Kintyre and the Cowal Peninsula or continue further north on the A85 to Oban, the gateway port to many of the area’s beautiful islands. From the north, the main route that leads to the region is the A82 from Inverness to Oban, which takes just over two hours.
To help you with your journey, read about driving in Scotland, find up-to-date traffic information from Traffic Scotland, or plan your route with Transport Direct.
National coach services run from cities and towns across Scotland to many of the larger towns in the area, including Campbeltown, Tarbert, Lochgilphead and Oban, from where you can link to local services.
There are good mainline rail links to the region on the west coast line. Travelling from Glasgow to Oban is an excellent way to begin your visit. Running alongside stunning lochs and mountains, this route is often considered one of the best train routes in the world. From Oban, you will find connecting ferry and road links to other parts of Argyll & The Isles. For all train times to Scotland and fares across the UK network, visit National Rail.
Discovering the West Highlands and Islands by car and passenger ferry is a pleasure in itself. Although some ferries allow tickets to be bought on the day, it is recommended that they are booked in advance to avoid disappointment.
Visitors from Ireland can travel from Larne to Cairnryan with Stenaline or from Larne to Cairnryan and Troon with P&O Ferries, who also offer express ferries to Troon between March and October. From Cairnryan and Troon, in south west of Scotland, you can travel north to Argyll within a matter of hours.
Between May and September the Kintyre Express passenger service operates between Ballycastle (Northern Ireland) and Campbeltown and takes approximately an hour and a half.
CalMac operate services from Arran to Kintyre with a journey time of 30 minutes and you can travel from Gourock to Dunoon in 20 minutes via Western Ferries and Argyll Ferries. Calmac now also run a ferry link for passengers and vehicles between Ardrossan and Campbeltown three times per week.
Visitors can also take the Jura Passenger Ferry, which takes less than an hour, from Tayvallich on the mainland to Craighouse on Jura.
For information about all public transport in Scotland, the best place to check for information and timetables is with Traveline; you can also download their handy mobile app or call them on 0871 200 22 33.