Largs is a popular holiday resort with a history stretching back to the Vikings. In fact Largs can lay claim to being the scene of the last Viking invasion to take place in Britain. The Battle of Largs in 1263 paved the way for the Treaty of Perth three years later, by which Norway ceded its claims to the Western Isles. The resort makes the most of its Viking past in the form of a festival which takes place in late summer each year. "Villages" are set up on the seafront populated by re-enactment groups who demonstrate to visitors the Viking way of life. The climax of the festivities is the burning of a longship and the re-enactment of the 1263 battle. Those who can't make it to the festival but want to find out about the Viking way of life should head to Vikingar, which incorporates a Viking museum as well as swimming and other facilities.
Aside from Viking shenanigans, Largs has the usual trappings of a seaside resort. The Barrfields Pavilion, opened in 1930, has recently been revamped into a vibrant arts centre. Nardini's Ice Cream Parlour dominates the promenade and is a Largs institution. Just to the south of the town is LargsSailing Club. Skelmorlie Aisle, in the care of Historic Scotland, is the remains of Largs Old Kirk, which is notable for the an elaborately carved stone tomb and a painted ceiling. Just to the south of Largs is Kelburn Castle, a keep with 17th century additions in the style of a French chateau. The castle is now looked after by Historic Scotland and incorporates a country centre and estate. Boat trips are available in the summer months courtesy of the paddle steamer Waverley. Also, the island of Great Cumbrae is reachable by ferry from Largs. Largs is the birthplace of the actor John Sessions.
For events in Largs, see here.
Map of the area.
©2004 Eddie Dowds, via Wikimedia Commons