Broadford to Armadale

Bike Riding · Scotland
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Difficulty
moderate
Distance
26.1 km
Duration
3:30h
Ascent
190 m
Descent
190 m
From the centre of Broadford return to Armadale on Skye's southern Sleat Peninsula, pass Torabhaig Distillery and Armadale Castle & Gardens with views across the Sound of Sleat to mainland Scotland.
Today's ride is a short one, taking you from Broadford back to Armadale. From the centre of Broadford leave the busy A87 as you turn onto the quieter A851. A steady climb across to Kinloch brings you back onto the south east coast of Skye overlooking the Sleat Sound. Follow the road south, returning to Armadale and the ferry terminal to take you back to Mallaig. Enjoy a leisurely day in the saddle whith time to visit Torabhaig distillery and Armadale Castle & Gardens if you wish. 

Author’s recommendation

If you have the legs and are feeling fit after a few days in the saddle you can take a challenging detour to the off-the-beaten-track village of Elgol, directly from Broadford before following the road south to Armadale, for excellent views of the Cuillin Ridge over Loch Corsuisk.  The detour makes the day an extra 45 km (72 km in total) with and extra 430 m of ascent (620 m in total) meaning this day falls towards the higher end of the moderate to strenuous grade category. 
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Difficulty
moderate
Technique
Stamina
Experience
Landscape
Highest point
89 m
Lowest point
6 m
Best time of year
Jan
Feb
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Jun
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Aug
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Dec

Safety information

The A851 road you will be cycling along today is generally quiet but can have short busier spells with traffic heading for the ferry to Mallaig.

Beware of traffic particular when entering and leaving towns where traffic flow tends to be the highest. Remember to stay on the left hand side of the road. Be mindful of other road users. Obey local road signs and look out for any change in road conditions.

***Before starting your ride it's always worth inspecting your bike for damage. Check for damage to the frame, components and wheels. Ensure that there are no loose cables, tyres are properly inflated and the brakes are working. Bear in mind the brakes may work the opposite way to which you are used to.

If you are hiring a bike it is worthwhile taking a quick test ride when you collect your bike to familiarise yourself with the gears, brakes and to check your bike is setup correctly for you.

Always wear a helmet when cycling and if you have any concerns over the condition of your rental bike please call the office or your bike hire shop using the number provided in your information pack.***

 

Tips, hints and links

Points of Interest

Armadale Castle & Gardens

An 18th century castle ruins surrounded by stunning gardens and woodlands with an on site café.

https://www.armadalecastle.com/

Torabhaig Distillery 

A recently opened whisky distillery (one of only two in Skye) offering tours with a café off to the left of the A851.

https://torabhaig.com

 

Food & Drink

There are a few options along the route today to stop for a quick tea/coffee or a more considerable lunch if you prefer. Aternatively, you can get supplies from several shops and cafés in Broadford before leaving. Make sure to bring snacks along with plenty of water whatever you choose to do. Just off the A851 approx. 14 km into the route you'll reach An Crùbh (usually open 7 days a week from 10am-4:30pm during peak months), a modern cafe in a beautiful space serving tea, coffee, cake and light snacks.  Near the end of the route attached to Armadale Castle & Gardens you'll pass the Gasta resturant & cafe (usually open 7 days a week from 9am-5pm during peak months) at Armadale Castle. 

When you arrive in Armadale you can enjoy tea, coffee and cake at Cafe 1925, or wait until the evening for dinner at the Ardvasar Hotel - make sure to book the latter as there are very limited options in the village. 

Start

Co-Op Supermarket, Broadford (11 m)
Coordinates:
DD
57.241089, -5.906707
DMS
57°14'27.9"N 5°54'24.1"W
UTM
30V 324598 6347966
w3w 
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Destination

Calmac ferry terminal, Armadale

Turn-by-turn directions

0.00 km - In Broadford, with the supermarket on your left-hand side continue STRAIGHT ON the A87 road out of the town for 2 km. 

2.25 km - At the end of the town at the junction TURN RIGHT off of the A87 main road onto the A851 following the signpost for Armadale and Ardvasar. Continue STRAIGHT ON this road as you pass through the settlements of Ilseornsay, Teangue and Kilbeg en route to Armadale.

20.00 km - Continue STRAIGHT ON passing the Torabhaig Distillery on your left-hand side. 

25.10 km - Continue STRAIGHT ON passing the entrance to Armadale Castle & Gardens on your right you can stop here for a visit - there's a cafe, and a few lovely trails in the ruined castle's grounds. 

26.10 km - Once past the filling station and shop in Armadale BEAR LEFT on the road and continue until you reach the pier and Calmac ferry terminal to end today's ride.

Coordinates

DD
57.241089, -5.906707
DMS
57°14'27.9"N 5°54'24.1"W
UTM
30V 324598 6347966
w3w 
///sweeter.quiz.tram
Arrival by train, car, foot or bike

Equipment

Always be prepared to cycle through a change of weather conditions and check the local weather forecast before leaving. Remember to bring a waterproof jacket and a warm layer particularly as conditions in Scotland are never guaranteed! Gloves (fingerless mitts in summer) are popular to provide some extra warmth and handlebar padding when riding, and don't forget a battery pack to provide an emergency charge to any navigation equipment you may be using.
Responsible for this content
Macs Adventure 
Profile picture of Grace Brammer
Author
Grace Brammer
Updated: September 14, 2020

Travel Guide: Bicycle rides in Scotland


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