The most outer of the Inner Hebrides. Tiree has become something of a mecca for windsurfing. Every year it plays host to the UK Windsailing Championships. which makes use of about 14 coastal locations around the island. Typically very windy. the climate is favourable (and water considerably warmer) due to its Gulf Stream location. Don’t miss: Hire a wetsuit and a board. and head to one of the more sheltered bays to try out your sea legs.
I Inner Hebrides. Regular sailing from Oban. Nearest train: Oban. For more information www. tireewavec/assic. com
Hardier surfers take advantage of the choppier and colder conditions at Gullane. Without the temperature benefits of the Gulf Stream. it's wetsuits ahoy in East Lothian. The large sandy beach is an excellent location for wind3urling. but unlike other siteS. Gullane lacks changing facilities.
I East Lothian. 78 miles east of Edinburgh on A 198. Nearest train: North Berwick.
Oft berated for being noisy and intrusive. waterspons around Loch Lomond’s inland beaches tend to be more of the motorised variety. Sailing and rowing is less popular and the beach at Luss can become hectic and crowded. Nevertheless. the quaint shingle beach. surrounded by wooded areas. is both blessed and cursed by its proximity to the central belt.
I Loch Lomond, 30 miles north of Glasgow, accessed by A82. Nearest train: Bal/och.
Traigh Na Berle
A quieter. more secluded alternative to Lewis' most popular watersports location. Uig Sands. Traigh Na Berie has a long sandy beach which is similarly pOunded by Atlantic swells. A good venue for camping. the beach is bordered by machair and has a caravan park nearby.
I East of Cnip, Isle of Lewis, Outer Hebrides. Regular ferry sailing from Ullapoo/ to Stornoway
If Luss is the home of powerboat power-struggles. then Findhorn is the perfect antidote. The yachts. dinghies and powerboats can take advantage of the watery expanse of the Moray Firth. while the soft sand and shingle beach boast a variety of wildlife and scenic attractions. Watersports novices should contact Moray Watersports, 01309 690239.
I Moray Firth, 30 miles north-east of lnverness on A96. Nearest train: Findhorn.
E 3557 yon CLEAuLmEss
Seacliff Not only does Seacliff pass on the Marine Conservation Socrety's checklist of clean beaches With flying colours. it's pretty darned scenic With it. Set amid protruding cliffs. the sandy beach has Views of Tantallon Castle to the east and Ben/Vickshire to the west. Unfortunately. the Views come at a price: Seacliff is a private beach and there is a charge for ViSitors. However. it is a good location for watersports. while twitchers can take advantage of the nearby nature reserve. Don’t miss: Take along a picnic hamper to make the most of the stunning scenery.
I The Borders, four miles east of north BerWick on A 798. Nearest train: North BerWick.
Teetering on the very heights of the north coast of Scotland. Torrisdale Bay has been likened to the PaCific Islands for its clear waters and clean sand. Set at the mouth of the River Naver and backed by dramatic cliffs. the beach is a stunning expanse of white sand and is growing in popularity as Scotland's own surfers' paradise.
I Near Bettyhi/l, Sutherland. Accessed Via A836. Nearest train.- Thurso.
Another east coast strand to have been given a clean bill of health. the sheltered. pristine sand of Coldingham is characterised by a picturesque cafe. Quirky beach huts and a maze of rock pools. The sheltered posmon means the bay is popular With bathers and aquadivers. while surfers tend to make more use of Pease Bay. ten miles north along the coast. I The Borders, three miles north of Eyemouth vra A7 707. Nearest train: Berwick-upon- Tweed.
Described as a microcosm of Highland landscape. Gairloch excels in the beach department. The area has two beaches — Big Sand and Redeint North - and. as their names would Suggest. Big Sand covers an expansive stretch of coastline. while Redpoint is characterised by its red-hued sand. Both are a mix of shingle and sand. bordered by Outcrops and dunes. and are typically secluded and untouched.
I High/ands. Accessed by 88027.
This National Trust for Scotland-owned beach is the first west coast beach to have passed the regulations for the Marine Conservation SOCiety's annual guide. The small, sheltered beach lies in the shadow of Culzean Castle. As the area is privately-owned. there is a charge for ViSitors. but worth it for those who want to take advantage of the picture postcard cove and its regularly swept sands.
I Culzean Castle, Maybo/e, Ayrshire, ten miles south of Ayr, accessed vra A7 79. Nearest train: Maybo/e.
19 Jun-3 Jul 2003 TH! LIST 21