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Kilmartin Glen, Scotland
Fast Facts
Historic Interest
Ancient Ruins
Tourist Attractions
Points of Interest Nearby
Family Travel Tips

Kilmartin Churchyard


Photo by Alfredo De Simone

There is more to Kilmartin Glen than lambs, ewes and rams. This green, glacial valley is an outdoor museum. More than 350 age-old ruins and relics - burial cairns, standing stones, stone circles, and rock art - speckle this sheep-spotted basin. Take a walking tour of Kilmartin Glen. Hike public rights of way. Crisscross farmland. Enjoy nature. Marvel at Neolithic, Bronze Age and Iron Age remains. Start your visit at Kilmartin House. View a slideshow. Learn about old stones. Plan your visit to coincide with the lambing season (March to May) and turn an archaeology adventure into animal escapade. Visit Kilmartin Churchyard and see some of the oldest gravestones in Scotland. End your journey at the museum café; it boasts some of the best food in Argyll.
Getting There
Kilmartin is located in western Scotland and is situated 29 miles (46 km) south of Oban and 8 miles (13 km) north of Lochgilphead. The nearest airports are in Glasgow and Edinburgh, roughly 100 miles (160 km) and 140 miles (225 km) respectively. European low cost airlines service both cities. Scottish Citylink and Scottish Rail connect Oban with Glasgow and Edinburgh. West Coast Motors operates a bus service between Oban and Kilmartin. The bus trip is 70 minutes. The trip by road is somewhat quicker but requires an adjustment to pace in any case. The roads north of Glasgow are predominately single carriageway or two-lane roads.
Getting Around
The village of Kilmartin lies at the center of Kilmartin Glen. The glen is accessible by foot and road. There is no public transport service in the valley of Kilmartin. Nearly all of the monuments and sites are an easy walk from valley roads. Walk Highlands provide details on a popular walking trail. The BBC has put together an audio guide and map for a walking tour of the glen. Maps for the BBC walk are available online, hard copies are available from the shop at Kilmartin House. Both walks are easy. Both are between 2-3 hours in length. Of note, the duration of the walk depends on the length of time spent at each historical site.
When to Travel
The best time of the year to visit western Scotland is from April to June. But don't expect endless days of warm sunshine. The weather in Scotland is fickle. It's as likely to be sunny as it is to be rainy. It's possible to experience more than one season in a single afternoon. The peak tourist season - July, August and Easter - is often crowded.
Things to Keep in Mind
Pack to dress in layers. Bring raingear and boats. Trails are often muddy after a hard rain.
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Travel Trivia
Spanish is the official language of: