Isle of Arran by ferry
Arran is known as a versatile island in terms of nature and there is also a lot to do. It is therefore a popular island among tourists. That also means that there are many crossings to the Isle of Arran. However, you can only choose from two ferries. These are the ferry from Ardrossan to Arran and the ferry from Claonaig to Lochranza (in winter this sails from Tarbert).
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Map with crossings to the isle of Arran
The map shows 3 ferry routes, but in practice only 2 ferries go to the island. During summer a ferry departs from Claonaig and in the winter the same ferry leaves from Tarbert.
- During peak season, there used to be a Ardrossan-Cambletown and Brodick Campbeltown connection. Unfortunately we currently have no information on when this crossing will resume.
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Ferry to Brodick
Most people traveling to the Isle of Arran will take the ferry from Ardrossan to Brodick. Ardrossan is around 45 minutes drive from Glasgow and can be reached in just over two hours from the English-Scottish border.
The crossing has a pleasant duration. With an hour it is not too long but not too short either. Of course you want to be able to enjoy the view and a snack and a drink on board.
We do recommend booking this crossing in time. It is a popular route that can get fully booked on the busier days in the summer. So if you want to sail at a favorable time, book your ticket well in advance.
Ferry to Lochranza
You will not find a large ferry terminal on this route. There is only a small ferry here that you can drive/walk on and off. This ferry sails from Claonaig in summer and from Tarbert in winter.
To get to Tarbert or Claonaig you have to make a big detour from a Scottish mainland or take a ferry. This ferry is therefore mainly used by people who are already recreating or living in the area. It is also a nice ferry for the island hoppers.
The Claonaig/Tarbert – Lochranza ferry is operated as a ‘turn up and go' service. That means you don't have to buy a ticket in advance or make a reservation.
About the Isle of Arran
The isle of Arran is located in the Firth of Clyde area and it is the sixth largest island in Scotland.
Arran is also seen as a place where all facets of Scotland come together on a relatively small island. You will find mountains, castles, beaches, golf courses, breweries and cheese makers.
Island hopping thanks to Calmac's ferry network
CalMac Ferries Ltd, also known as Caledonian MacBrayne, is a ferry operator owned by the Scottish Government. It is the largest ferry operator to the main islands on the west coast of Scotland.Caledonian MacBrayne, Wikipedia.org. The ferries connect The Hebrides and the Isle of Arran with Scotland.
The area is very suitable for Island hopping. In this way you get to know the unique atmosphere and nature of different islands. Check our handy ferry map of the Hebrides to get a good view of the possibilities.