Walk: Tarbat Ness - from Cornwall to shorn wool

Highland | Portmahomack | Full day walk | ★★★

[Approach to Tarbatness Lighthouse]

Tarbat Ness is a peninsula jutting into the North Sea between the Cromarty and Dornoch firths. Off the beaten track describes the area well: it has a bit of an isolated, island feel, especially if you travel here via the Cromarty Ferry. The scenery feels more Cornish than Caledonian in character, with an absence of high hills nearby and a relatively dry climate. The slim headland makes a excellent (although quite rough) circuit feasible, passing the stripy lighthouse and its flocks of sheep before returning along the peninsula's eastern shore, past a restored castle home sitting on the low cliffs close to Rockfield hamlet. Portmahomack, the idyllic fishing village at the start, is pretty enough to merit a quick exploration even without the walk.

[The coast between Portmahomack and Tarbat Ness has good views across Dornoch Firth]

📌 Walk: Tarbat Ness - from Cornwall to shorn wool ★★★
Start / finish at car park on Main Street (B9165) towards the south end of Portmahomack, G.R.: NH 914842 ///fuse.salad.geek

▶ 14 km / 9 mi | ▲ 290 m | ⌚ Full day | Moderate
Features: Portmahomack; Tarbat Ness; Tarbatness Lighthouse; Ballone Castle
Terrain: Mostly coast paths, quite rough in places; minor roads from Rockfield back to start.

Route & map

Car park - Portmahomack - Tarbat Ness & lighthouse via west coast - Ballone Castle via east coast - Rockfield - start


Route credit: Walkhighlands

On our visit

Wildlife: Sheep near Tarbat Ness; crabs and other rockpool life at Portmahomack beach; lots of butterflies.
Weather: Sunshine and scattered clouds, with heavy rain showers over Dornoch Firth only bringing a few droplets to the peninsula. Temperatures in low teens, a little breezy on the outward section. This is potentially a good walk for dolphin spotting.

Also on this walk

>> Portmahomack ★★

[Portmahomack, seen from the beach just to the west)

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