Saturday, 15 December 2012

THE ROSS OF MULL

The Ross of Mull is a large peninsula extending south west from the centre of the island - the word Ross comes from the gaelic 'ros' meaning peninsula. The eastern end of the peninsula is characterised on the map by its tightly packed contours, while the western end is a mix of lochs, inlets and small islands, one of which, Erraid, featured in Kidnapped by Robert Louis Stevenson, whose main character David Balfour was marooned for a while on the island. The peninsula has a rich variety of wildlife, from otters to adders, corncrakes to red deer and mountain hare. There are wildlife tours by minibus available for visitors to the peninsula who want to have the best chance of spotting its creatures. The peninsula also holds plenty of interest for geologists, with its columns of basalt, ravines and caves, most notably the Carsaig Arches, basaltic formations which have come about by the action of the sea, very similar to the more famous ones on Staffa. The tip of the peninsula is noted for its red granite, which has been extensively used for construction, including such famous London landmarks as the Albert Memorial, Blackfriars Bridge and the Holborn Viaduct. The peninsula has a scattering of tiny settlements, some of which offer accommodation and other facilities for visitors, such as Bunessan, Fionnphort - the departure point for Iona, of which more in the next post - and Carsaig, set in a beautiful bay with excellent walking options. The Ross of Mull Historical Centre is next to Bunessan old mill, and acts as a repository for historical records and data for people around the world who have traced their roots back to this area.

Map of the area.


Carsaig Arches © 2009 Hopgrove James, via Wikimedia Commons

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