The island of Jura, population about 175, lies to the west of the north of the Mull of Kintyre and to the north of Islay. It is a large sparsely populated island with only one village, Craighouse. It is famous for its wide open wild spaces and of course whisky, hunting and its three main mountains known as the Paps of Jura. The island is almost cut into two separate islands by Loch Tarbert which cuts its way from the west almost all the way to the east.
Until recently the trip from Jura to the mainland took three hours despite it being only a few miles off the coast. Travellers used to go from Jura to Islay across the Sound of Islay and then get a boat from there to Kinnacraig on the Mull of Kintyre.. This is still the case for vehicles. However there is now a service which takes passengers from Craighouse on Jura to Tayvallich Loch Sween on the Knapdale peninsula, a journey of only one hour. Currently this service only runs in the summer months you can check the timetables by clicking here.
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The ferry to Islay runs from Feolin on the Sound of Islay to Port Askaig. Feolin is not a village nor even has houses and is about a twenty minute journey by car to the the only village which is Craighouse.
The distillery on the island is a great place to visit and produces the world famous Isle of Jura whisky, a malt to remember. The distillery is the main complex in the village of Craighouse. There is also a hotel and a shop plus a few houses a pier and fantastic views everywhere. The bay here is very popular with passing yachts who stop off to visit the distillery and the restaurant and pub at the Jura hotel.
or those visiting the island for hill walking, then the Paps of Jura not only provide a great walk but also unrivalled views of this part of Scotland. The highest of the Paps is Beinn Shiantaidh which is 2,477 feet tall not one of Scotland's 284 Munros (mountains over 3,000 feet) nor one of the country's 220 Corbetts (over 2500 feet) however despite that this mountain and its two cousins, Beinn an Oir (2571 feet) and Beinn a'Chaolais (2407 feet) provide an excellent climb particularly as you will be starting from sea level.
It would not be right to mention Jura and not mention George Orwell. This famous writer stayed on Jura at the north of the Island when he wrote 1984. He stayed at a cottage called Barnhill which overlooks another famous icon. The Corryvrekan whirlpool. The second largest tidal phenomenon in the northern hemisphere.
Jura also has a reputation for hunting and fishing. Considering the size and wilderness areas of this island it is not surprising. There are huge herds of deer and many, many lochs for fly fishing.