There are a few ways and means to get to our beautiful peninsula.
Most commonly, given the rural location, people will drive here. However, there are other more eco-friendly options which are worth considering including a local bus service, a semi-local train service or, for the more energetic, cycling! We also have those who prefer to come by boat or helicopter. Please be aware there is no taxi service in Applecross.
If you are planning to drive here, please read the information below about the roads into Applecross, particularly the Bealach Na Ba.
If you are using a SatNav to get to us, our address is Shore Street, Applecross, IV54 8LR. Our Google maps reference is: http://bit.ly/2xYfMDD
There is also information below about alternative routes for getting here. This will not only maximise your exposure to our amazingly beautiful local scenery it will help you meet the travellers adage of not backtracking!
Please remember to check if there are any road or other traffic disruptions which may affect your journey to us. If there are road closures it can mean a long detour or wait time.
The Scottish Road Works online website is helpful with all current roadworks:
and you may find Traffic Scotland useful BUT it only reports on Trunk Roads (which a lot of our local roads are not):
The following website is also very useful for information on the wider Wester Ross area.
Bealach Na Ba
One of the most spectacular parts of the journey to Applecross is the Bealach Na Ba (or Pass of the Cattle in English). This is a narrow single track road, so just one lane all the way, with passing places. It rises from sea level to 626m in 9.1km. As a high mountainous road it is subject to snow & ice from October to May.
Given the Bealach's quite unique properties, it is not the road for everyone or every type of vehicle. In our experience, it is important drivers are confident to drive on a such a road. Some considerations for those choosing to traverse the Bealach include:
- confidence in driving on a single track road on the left hand side;
- confidence in reversing, possibly for some distance (up and down steep hills);
- using passing places for both allowing vehicles to pass safely and to allow overtaking;
- ability to look ahead whilst driving to see what is coming and make decisions accordingly;
- driving to the weather conditions (which may include snow, ice, mist, fog and use of lights accordingly) and;
- ensuring they can handle their vehicle in any conditions.
Friendly Ask - The sign at the bottom of the Bealach is an driver advisory sign and is vitally important to inform drivers about the road. PLEASE do not deface this with stickers as it obscures the important information. We are experiencing an increasing amount of drivers on the Bealach who are not prepared and in an inappropriate vehicle. This is causing difficulties to them and others.
Important considerations if you are planning to drive over the Bealach:
Driving on the left:
You must still drive on the left hand side on a single track road. Please do not cross the road to get to a passing place. You should use the passing places on your side of the road or wait in the road for the other driver to use the passing place. Exceptions are for emergency or larger vehicles to allow them to pass easily and safely.
- Passing places are used to allow vehicles to pass and to allow overtaking. There are a large number on the Bealach but they are of varying size and some can only accommodate a normal car length. There are also Police notices which inform drivers that they MUST not impede following traffic, so please use passing places to allow passing AND overtaking.
- Passing places are for passing NOT parking in. This is both inconsiderate and potentially dangerous. There is a lovely big car park at the top of the hill to stop and enjoy the views. You can walk down from there to get some amazing photos!
- Please don’t use the side of the road as a passing place. This causes the road to erode and removes the white boundary lines which are vital in the dark and fog in the middle of winter. The use of the edge of the road to permit passing has resulted in 150 + burst tyres last year alone!
There is an 18T weight limit on the road due to a collapse a number of years ago. Please adhere to this.
Vehicles who are not advised:
The signs at the bottom of the Bealach recommend the road is not suitable for large vehicles, caravans or learner drivers. The advisory note may also extend to other types of vehicles e.g double axle vehicles and large motor homes.
Nature of the road:
There are a number of hairpin bends and blind corners on the road and it reaches a gradient of 20% in parts. Please drive appropriately (for you and your vehicles sake!).
These are not allowed on public roads. We would recommend no more than 2-3 cars travelling together (the passing places can be small). Given the large volume of traffic now using this road it is possible to meet a lot of vehicles on your journey (up to 100 is possible!) so it important to leave sufficient room between the cars to allow passing to occur safely at the passing places e.g. If you think about your convoy of 6 cars meeting another convoy of 6 cars with one passing place in a 100m stretch of road.. not to mention the dozen cars behind each convoy who, despite driving appropriately will get caught up in the melee ... it doesn't take long for chaos to ensue! Please be considerate, everybody will enjoy their journey more :)
It is important to remember that this is a public road which is used by local commuters, businesses, visitors using varying forms of transport and, of course, emergency vehicles! The rules are the same regardless of the vehicle you are using e.g. pushbike, motorcycle, van, car, etc. If you wish to have a more relaxing journey you may wish to traverse the Bealach outwith the peak seasonal travel times of 8am to 6pm.
Overall please obey the road rules, be sensible, courteous, look ahead, use caution and remember there may be somebody trying to get to get to an emergency behind you ( e.g. the doctor, retained fire crew, coastguard) so please give way to those behind you. Everybody you will both enjoy the journey a lot more :)
If the Bealach isn't suitable for you. There is an alternative driving route to Applecross via the coast road. This road hugs the Northern end of the peninsula and offers spectacular vistas towards Torridon & the Isle of Skye.
If you are unsure about the road condition or would like some help deciding please check our Facebook page or give us a ring.
The information below provides directions and options for getting here, under normal road conditions, from Inverness, Fort William, Portree (Isle of Skye) and Ullapool. If you are travelling by public transport please refer to the section below.
If considering coming by public transport to Applecross then please read this general information.
There are 2 local bus services which cater for the Applecross area. One of these bus services comes into Applecross and the other services the wider local area.
The bus which comes to Applecross is operated by Lochcarron Garage. It operates a service from Inverness bus station to Applecross, twice a week on a Wednesday and Saturday (this is subject to change so please contact the garage to check). This bus does stop on route but is predominantly for passengers from Applecross or Lochcarron travelling to Inverness and back. It may be able to take passengers who are at other points along the way (e.g. Strathcarron train station or Garve) but this is dependent on availability. Please note passengers must book a seat by 6pm the night before travelling, as Applecross is a request stop. The phone number to enquire is 01520 722 205. This bus service can get busy so it is advisable to book early.
Local area bus
The bus which services the local area is operated by DMK Garage. It runs from the train station at Strathcarron (on the Inverness to Kyle of Lochalsh line) to Lochcarron, Kishorn, Sheildaig Torridon. Passengers need to find their own transport from these destinations to Applecross. The number for the bus service is 01520 722 682.
Please be advised there is no train station in Applecross. The closest station is Strathcarron (on the Inverness to Kyle of Lochalsh line) which is 22 miles from Applecross. The train services are operated by Scotrail and for current information please refer to their website, www.scotrail.co.uk. As public transport to Applecross is limited, to get here from the station we find that cycling is popular! Otherwise the local Applecross bus may be able to assist. Please refer to the local bus information above for details.
If you are planning to arrive by another method please give us a call.
Useful travel websites which may help you plan your journey are: