THE JOURNEY TO SANDAIG
Knoydart is located on the UK Mainland level with the Southern point of Skye.
With no road to the peninsular, regular access is by ferry to Inverie village from Mallaig.
Once at Inverie - a 4x4 drive across Knoydart and you're at Sandaig Bay
Or you can hike with luggage for 2-3days!....
There are many routes to Mallaig (incl. road and rail).
Below are our suggestions.
The journey is long - but it's unique and certainly helps you feel remote!
On the Boat
The journey over by boat is one of the highlights of the holiday, as it's the first time you get up close to a very wild bit of Scotland.
As Mallaig disappears in your wake, the islands of Rum, Eigg and Muck come into view behind you, with Skye on your left.
After 10-15 minutes a keen eye can spot Sandaig Bay & Sandaig Cottage coming into view and disappearing on your left as you cruise onto Inverie.
The picturesque Inverie is easily spotted by the row of white cottages which line its shore. The "new" Inverie pier was completed in 2006 and makes coming ashore at low tide very much easier than it used to be!
The Final Leg
Our Landrover will be ready for your collection in Inverie.
The house is a 4 mile single track drive along the coast road and down Sandaig Bay's private track.
Regular Ferries to Inverie
The majestic former MFV the Western Isles runs regular services between Mallaig and Inverie.
The sailing times and frequency depend on the day of the week and time of year - so please check their timetable or call their office in advance to book.
Private boats are available on request for the crossing to Inverie or for special excursions. Please contact the Knoydart Foundation Office for details and recommendations on who is currently providing such a service.
Private Boat hire may be a more economical option for larger parties (>6ppl) or if you are offered to share with others.
Either way it is advised that you book both crossings in advance as space can be limited.
A timeless whiskey, haggis, neeps and tattis in the lounge car followed by a quick sleep and you're in Fort William - seemingly foreshortening the journey.
The sleeper starts in London Euston at about 9.15pm and arrives in Fort William at about 10am.
The connection to Mallaig then leaves at middayish and takes 1hr - leaving time to buy provisions between the trains.
Beyond Glasgow, both trains have spectacular iconic views. The trains are very comfortable and punctual (so don't be late!).
Treating the sleeper as a night's accommodation helps to justify the higher initial price (if you want a bed) compared to alternative route options.
Booking well in advance and early is essential; with prices rising over time until they're all sold.
Note for the keener readers (that's you):
The best views from the Mallaig train are on the Morrisons side (on the left leaving Fort William).
Railcards (incl. "Two Together" cards) are accepted on both train legs saving 1/3 and easily paying for the original railcard.
There is a large Morrisons for provisions just by Fort William station as well as many shops on the high street for last minute of highland specific purchases - so make good use of this time and explore the town.
The ferries depart the jetty 100m from Mallaig train station. The station has a couple of trolleys.
The Caledonian Sleeper returns to Euston around 8 a.m. The overnight culture shock is striking.
Don't be surprised if you feel like turning around.
The journey by car to Mallaig is equally picturesque.
One route is by motorway virtually all the way to Stirling, and then via Callander, Tyndrum, Bridge of Orchy, onto the dramatic Rannoch Moor, Glencoe, Ballachulish, and FortWilliam; all with their attractions.
It is about 11 hours from London and an overnight stop en route is best, if you have the time.
The final leg to Mallaig leg is also beautiful. You can deviate along the old road to Arisaig harbour and see the white sands of Morar and leave your car in Mallaig, without parking fees (but do ask).
Although the journey is long, we have always found it to be an enjoyable experience in it own right.
Flying to Glasgow is another option - particularly if time is especially tight.
Either rent a car from the airport (and leave it parked at Mallaig during your stay) or take a direct train from Glasgow to Mallaig (taking in the best views of the West Highland Line).
You can also fly to inverness, followed by bus to Fort William and train onwards or rental car all the way to Mallaig.