Mallaig Parking`+ Small Isles

Cycle-touring, Expeditions, Adventures, Major cycle routes NOT LeJoG (see other special board)
gloomyandy
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Joined: 16 Mar 2012, 10:46pm

Mallaig Parking`+ Small Isles

Postby gloomyandy » 26 Mar 2017, 8:29am

I'm toying with visiting the small isles for a few days and then popping over to S. Uist for a few more days. So I would be using the ferries out of Mallaig. Are there any good places to leave a car for a week or two? I've never really looked on previous visits. I've happily parked at Uig (next to the pier) and Oban (on the coast road near the seafood temple) in the past. Happy to leave the car further inland at say Arisaig and ride out if that seems a better option. I know there are a few campsites out that way (which I may be using for a couple of nights), so I may be able to arrange to leave the car there. Any thoughts?

Oh and if anyone has ever visited the small isles recently do you happen to know if the private boat that runs from Arisaig will take a bike (with panniers)?

Norman H
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Joined: 31 Jul 2011, 4:39pm

Re: Mallaig Parking`+ Small Isles

Postby Norman H » 26 Mar 2017, 9:03am

There's long stay parking here, opposite the harbour. I parked there about 15 years ago. I believe it's restricted to 7 days but I've no idea how strictly that's enforced.

Your Idea of using a campsite may be better. It's a strategy that I've often used.

Tangled Metal
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Re: Mallaig Parking`+ Small Isles

Postby Tangled Metal » 26 Mar 2017, 2:00pm

There's a decent campsite along the coast road past seafood restaurant and dive centre i think. We left our car there for a week. Paid for the privilege but it was reasonable and cheaper than the car dealer in Oban that takes long stay cars. You have to leave car keys in case they need to move it for some reason though.

Leisure centre up the hill a bit allows long stay too.

Personally I'd prefer the campsite. The car dealer is a secure plot but you get limited access to opening times that are shorter than the campsite. Another place is a marine engine garage. That could be part of the car dealership though. If you don't mind collecting the car in office hours and want the secured yard with security / alarms / cameras then the dealership garage might be ok. Search online for details it's how i found out about it

bikepacker
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Re: Mallaig Parking`+ Small Isles

Postby bikepacker » 26 Mar 2017, 3:29pm

I know of someone who left their car at a campsite near Arisaig. Can't remember the name but from the village going the coast road to Mallaig it is the first site on the left down a short dirt track. He was charged £10 for the week a couple of years ago.
There is your way. There is my way. But there is no "the way".

gloomyandy
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Joined: 16 Mar 2012, 10:46pm

Re: Mallaig Parking`+ Small Isles

Postby gloomyandy » 27 Mar 2017, 1:23am

Thanks for the info. Looks like I should be able to find somewhere to leave the car.

Now all I need to do is work out a combination of ferries to get me around the islands. Not that easy with the Small Isles!

gloomyandy
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Joined: 16 Mar 2012, 10:46pm

Re: Mallaig Parking`+ Small Isles

Postby gloomyandy » 12 May 2017, 6:44pm

Quick update. I'm just back from visiting all four Small Isles. I managed to work out a route that gave me a night on each (for anyone tempted, leave on Friday and go Muck, Rum, Canna, Eigg). The current CalMac timetable really does not make this very easy. I spoke to a number of folks that had found it totally confusing. On my return to Mallaig I popped over to South Uist for a few days. I parked my car at Mallaig with no problems.

There is not a lot of road on these islands, but they are well worth a visit. Each one is pretty different to the others (in both geography, history and ownership) and they each have a very different feel. The roads/tracks that do exist are a bit on the rough side, so need care with a loaded bike. Riding my unloaded Croix de Fer with 38C tyres worked well and reminded me a lot of the early days of mountain biking!

Oh and it really helped having some of the best weather I've ever seen in that part of the world!

Thanks for the help.

robing
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Joined: 7 Sep 2014, 9:11am

Re: Mallaig Parking`+ Small Isles

Postby robing » 14 May 2017, 12:18am

You certainly timed your journey well. Have you ever been to Coll and Tiree? I quite fancy going, but the timings are a bit tricky.
You could go there on the way to Barra. I think once upon a time you could get a ferry there from Tobermory, but now only from Oban (or the return journey from Barra).

gloomyandy
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Re: Mallaig Parking`+ Small Isles

Postby gloomyandy » 14 May 2017, 9:36am

Yes I have friends that live on Coll. Both are lovely islands (again very different) and well worth a visit. I think there is a daily ferry from Oban, but the ferry to Barra only calls on one day a week (may be wrong it is a while since I've been). I saw my one and only otter while wild camping on Tiree!

I was very lucky with the weather. Though I had been watching it closely! One of the advantages of no longer being at work is that you can just go if the weather looks good!

bogmyrtle
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Re: Mallaig Parking`+ Small Isles

Postby bogmyrtle » 14 May 2017, 10:26am

The Oban to Castlebay ferry calls at Coll and Tiree only on a Wednesday leaving Oban at 7.15am.
The return Castlebay to Oban ferry on a Wednesday leaves Castlebay at 2.30pm calls at Tiree and Coll .
A bike does more miles to the banana than a Porsche.

robing
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Re: Mallaig Parking`+ Small Isles

Postby robing » 14 May 2017, 2:06pm

gloomyandy wrote:Yes I have friends that live on Coll. Both are lovely islands (again very different) and well worth a visit. I think there is a daily ferry from Oban, but the ferry to Barra only calls on one day a week (may be wrong it is a while since I've been). I saw my one and only otter while wild camping on Tiree!

I was very lucky with the weather. Though I had been watching it closely! One of the advantages of no longer being at work is that you can just go if the weather looks good!


I'm semi-retired - I'm generally free April-October. I was training for my first marathon on May 1st, so wasn't able to take of advantage of the mini Scottish heatwave, otherwise would have been up there like a shot! Now it looks like normal service is resumed re the weather so will probably head off for Spain instead. *sigh*.

Shame the ferry to Coll and Tiree no longer leaves from Tobermory as that would make much more sense.

pau1ine
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Joined: 9 Aug 2008, 8:40pm

Re: Mallaig Parking`+ Small Isles

Postby pau1ine » 24 May 2017, 10:10pm

The other option is to stay in a B&B on the outskirts of the town who will offer you parking for a few extra days while you're on the island(s).

In good weather the islands are a delight, or at least an experience what ever the weather i.e constant rain on Rum for a week .