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Photo of the Month

1 to 12 days
Enjoy a photographic adventure through Argyll & The Isles. Based on the winning entries of our 'Photo of the Month' Facebook competition, we've created a journey to some of the most spectacularly beautiful (and photogenic!) corners of Argyll & The Isles. And while you're out and about, if you take some stunning snaps why not enter them into the competition? All you need to do is post them on our Facebook page.
 
January 2015
1. January 2015
January’s photo of the month competition had joint winners – Conor Ryan and Graham Steven – with both photos having a common theme, lighthouses.

Lismore Lighthouse
On the ferry trip between Mull and Oban you will pass the lighthouse captured so well by Conor Ryan (pictured left).

It stands on Eilean Musdile, an islet which lies to the south west of the larger island of Lismore and separated by a sound around ¼ of a mile across. Eilean Musdile is only around ten acres in size and its most distinguishing feature is the lighthouse.

Built in 1833 by Robert Stevenson, the Lismore Lighthouse was first lit in October 1933 and became automated in June 1965. Standing at 31 metres tall the lighthouse flashes white every ten seconds and has a range of 17 nautical miles.

Loch Linnhe
Graham Steven captured the view from Loch Linnhe towards Shuna and, in the distance, Sgeir Bhuidhe Lighthouse (pictured in header).

Loch Linnhe is a sea loch in the north west of our region, and to reach the area where Graham was shooting, you should travel around 10 miles north of Benderloch on the A828.

Sgeir Bhuidhe translates as ‘Yellow Skerry’ in English and the lighthouse lies on this small rocky outcrop just off the coast of Port Appin on the A828 between Loch Creran and North Connel, across from Lismore.
February 2015
2. February 2015
The Kintyre Forum was the winner of our February competition with this photo of Campbeltown Loch from Dalintober.

Campbeltown
Famous all over the world for whisky, Campbeltown lies on the south east of the Kintyre peninsula. One of the largest towns in Argyll & the Isles, it's situated on a deep bay which is sheltered by Davaar Island and is an ideal base for exploring the wider area.

As well as the many beaches around the Kintyre coast, Campbeltown plays host to many festivals and events throughout year including the Mull of Kintyre Music Festival, MOK 10K and half marathon and winter festival. It's a year-round destination.

The photo which won the February photo of the month competition was taken in the east of the town in the Dalintober area.

How do I get here?
By car from Glasgow on the A82 and A83 – 110 miles.
By bus on the 926 West Coast Motors service from Buchanan Street.
By air to Machrihanish Airport from Glasgow International Airport (three miles west of the town).
March 2015
3. March 2015
Machrihanish looking towards Jura was March’s winning entry from Ian Rich.

Machrihanish
The village of Machrihanish lies on the south west of the Kintyre peninsula, a short drive from Campbeltown. It faces outwards towards Ireland and the Atlantic and is famous not only for spectacular sunsets, but for golf.

Golf
Now boasting two links courses, the original Machrihanish Golf Club course is widely regarded as having the best opening hole in the world.

The new Machrihanish Dunes course opened in 2009 and has an award-winning design. The Dunes is part of a bigger investment by an American company which includes the Ugadale Hotel in Machrihanish and the Royal Hotel in Campbeltown.

Beach
Machrihanish Beach runs for five miles round to Westport and offers some of the best windsurfing in the country.

A piece of history – Radio Machrihanish
Reginald Aubrey Fessnden made history with the first ever cross-Atlantic voice transmission from Machrihanish. He built a radio transmitting station with a 120m high mast in 1905 which he used to transmit using wireless telegraphy to his other station at Brant Rock in Massachusetts, USA.

Messages were exchanged on 1 January 1906 but a gale destroyed the mast in December 1906 and it was never rebuilt. However, Radio Machrihanish is now a geocaching location and you can visit the site and find the treasure it hides!

How do I get here?
By car on the A82 and A83 using directions for Campbeltown. Approximately three miles before Campbeltown turn right towards the Sound of Kintyre and follow directions for Machrihanish.
By air from Glasgow International Airport to Campbeltown Airport (formerly RAF Machrihanish).
By public transport from Glasgow to Campbeltown on West Coast Motors 926 service and then local connection.
April 2015
4. April 2015
The view from McCaig’s Tower in Oban from Kate Phillips was our April photo of the month competition winner.

Oban is one of the most popular tourism destinations on Argyll and the Isles’ west coast. Famous for its fish and shellfish the town is known as the Seafood Capital of Scotland.

McCaig’s Tower
Our April photo winner was taken from McCaig’s Tower a Colosseum lookalike which dominates the town’s skyline. Made of local granite, the tower was commissioned by local philanthropist John Stuart McCaig and was built between 1897 and his death in 1902. McCaig’s intention was not only to erect a lasting monument to his family, but also to provide work for the local stonemasons during the winter months. His original plans included a museum and art gallery, however his death saw work stop with only the outer walls completed.

McCaig’s Tower is now a public garden, and it is also used as a wedding venue. As you can see from Kate’s photo it has wonderful views over to the islands of Kerrera, Lismore and Mull.

How do I get here?
By car: There are lots of routes into Oban visit the AA or RAC websites to find the best for you.

By Coach: Oban is served by the Citylink 976 service from Glasgow.

By Rail: Come into Oban along the world-famous West Highland line! The service is run by First Scotrail and you can visit their website or download their app for timetable information.

By Air: You can fly into Glasgow and Edinburgh airports which are served by all major UK airlines. You can also fly directly to Oban by private charter flight to Oban Airport at North Connel.

By Sea: Oban is a busy ferry port with regular ferries to and from the islands of Mull, Colonsay, Coll, Tiree, Lismore, Barra and South Uist. For full timetable information visit the Caledonian MacBrayne website.
May 2015
5. May 2015
The second photo featuring a Machrihanish sunset won the May competition, this time captured by Michael Reilly.

Campbeltown airport / Machrihanish airfield
In addition to the March information, Machrihanish is home to Campbeltown Airport, formerly RAF Machrihanish which lies close to the village. The airfield is still available for use by the RAF but it has been taken over by the Machrihanish Airbase Community Company. The airbase hosts several events over the year including the Mach 1 Stages Rally.

Coal mining
Machrihanish also had one of the smallest coalfields in Britain. Mining had taken place since before the 16th century, but it was in the 18th century when a new pit was sunk that the area enjoyed its busiest period This lasted until the closure of the mine in 1929, following a fire in 1925. Much of the coal mined went to the distilleries around Campbeltown.

The coalfield was linked to Campbeltown by a canal from the late 18th century, and then in the 19th century by a narrow guage railway. Mining in the coalfield continued after the opening of a drift mine in 1946 until 1967.
   
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