Ballygrant Woods and Loch Ballygrant, Loch Allan and Lily Loch (NR4067-NR4268)

A track runs right through from Ballygrant to Port Askaig. Ballygrant Loch Copyright: Museum of Islay LifeThe area is privately owned but walkers are welcome, though dogs should be on leads. There is parking in the villages at either end. From the middle of Ballygrant village, on the A846, take the turning to Mulindry, immediately opposite the shop, and then bear left along the private road keeping the woodland on your left and take either of the two entrances on the left. The track drops down to a small dam giving excellent views of the loch. It then roughly follows the left-hand loch shore. Look out for a signpost on the left to Loch nan Cadhan which is worth a look. The track leaves the loch and runs through mixed woods and fields for about a mile. In the middle of a conifer plantation, another track leads off to the right to Loch Allan. This can be viewed from the boathouse. The main track then passes the delightful Lily Loch, well named and backed by some fine Scots pines. The last half-mile runs through recently felled, but regenerating, woodland before passing the private grounds of Dunlossit House and so to Port Askaig. Opposite Lily Loch, a track leads up to the left and will bring you out of the main road above Port Askaig. There is a footpath alongside the road all the way to Ballygrant.

Typical species: Red-throated Diver, Little Grebe, Grey Heron, Mute Swan, Mallard, Tufted Duck, Red-breasted Merganser, Buzzard, Sparrowhawk, Coot, Common Sandpiper, thrushes, occasional Blackcap and Garden Warbler, Wood Warbler, Coal Tit, Blue Tit, Great Tit, Long-tailed Tit, Treecreeper, finches, Siskin.

See also: Main Birdwatching Localities on Islay