Things to Do: On the Island
The beautiful seclusion of this wild conservation island gives ample opportunities for exciting outdoor adventure. Guided walks, or exploring on your own, the island offers amazing opportunities for hillside rambles and picnics, wandering the shoreline for rock pools and finding crabs, discovering the archaeology or launching your own expeditions by boat. With a web of hidden gullies, abandoned settlements, beaches, waterfalls and coves there’s plenty to sink your teeth into!
Carna is the perfect place to relax, unwind and re-charge. An opportunity to reconnect as a family, enjoy those true unrushed conversations, indulge in reading somewhere even quieter than a library, rediscover cards and board games or just take in the crystal clean air and views over the bay with a glass of wine as the swallows dance around you in summer. With dark starlight skies the evenings can be as adventurous or relaxing as your days, with perhaps the distant roaring of stags to help you nod off. You’re welcome to do as much or as little as you like, it’s your call.
Wildlife Watching and Photography
The wild and secluded nature of Carna makes it a haven for all kinds of wildlife and our work as Carna Conservation Initiative is all about enhancing this further. With free range over the island and around its sheltered and quiet waters in your boat there is ample opportunity to spot the wide variety of species that live and visit us throughout the year. We are in the process of constructing two all-weather wildlife watching hides exclusively for our guests to be able to sit comfortably with commanding views over the island and its surrounding waterways for spotting and photography.
From the hides, your cottage or just out and about you may witness and capture our strong otter population that can be seen most days playing or hunting round our shore. Alternatively, it may be our Common Seals, Dolphins and Porpoises, Arctic Terns, Herons, Red and Roe Deer, Foxes, Pine Martens, beautiful Butterflies and Moths or the soaring Buzzards, Kestrels, Sea and Golden Eagles above to name but a few, that you’ll catch sight of.
With animal paths and trails across the island, there is a variety of different walks on the island to explore. From beach walks in the sheltered bay, moorland around the island to pushing yourself with a walk to the top of Cruachan Chàrna for stunning views over the loch and open Atlantic Ocean. Using your inclusive boat you are free to go further afield with a wide choice of walks on the nearby mainland of Ardnamurchan and Morvern you can do direct from the boat or by a short car drive, perhaps combined with a day trip to other sites on the mainland. Our team can advise you where to go good ones include going up to the extinct volcano, along the ‘Singing Sands’, around the coast past the ruined Castle Tioram or to the recent discovery of a Viking burial boat at Swordle bay.
With zero light pollution a clear night on Carna provides quite a spectacle. To sit outside the houses on a dead quiet night and admire the scale of the cosmos while spotting shooting stars and satellites whizz by is one of our favourite experiences on Carna. Great for putting life into perspective and clearing your head yet a sight many of us hardly get the time or place to see nowadays. You can also catch a glimpse of the ‘Northern Lights’ or Aurora Borealis on certain nights as well!