Bealach na Bà - Applecross
The Bealach na Ba ("Pass of the cattle") is not a single attraction, it doesn't have a visitor centre, and there are no visitor facilities as such.
But the Bealach is an unforgettable drive up and along one of the most dramatic roads on mainland UK, rivalling many a Swiss mountain pass and with terrific views across much of Wester Ross, the whole of Skye, and the Islands of Rum and the Outer Hebrides. You will NOT forget this drive as long as you live!
The view from the Top.....towards Skye.
Starting the drive at Lochcarron, head along towards Kishorn - perhaps even stop for a snack at the Kishorn Seafood bar - then continue on towards Shieldaig. But about 3 miles on from Kishorn, you will see a sign directing you towards Applecross over the "Bealach". If you have a caravan in tow, or are driving a large motorhome, you might want to think twice at this point! Look at the sign below: This means what it says. Advice from several professional drivers that know the road, and from the local breakdown services is that if your motorhome is more than a standard VW T5 conversion (ie about 16 – 18 ft in length), please do not go over the pass. It only takes ONE person who is not used to driving a large vehicle to block the road completely to the detriment of other users, those that use the road for work, and importantly – emergency vehicles. The road was blocked several times last year because of this. This is not scaremongering, this is FACT.
Towards the Bealach and Applecross, the road is single track ALL the way, and goes steadily uphill through a dramatic mix of mountain scenery to the summit at 2053ft (625.7 metres). What's it like to drive up? Take a look at the video below, courtesy of Steve Carter. (You might not go up the Bealach at precisely the same rate as Steve!).
The Bealach, as seen down the bonnet of a Caterham R500....
Having enjoyed the drive up, and assuming the weather is clear, there is a parking area on the left at the top with superb views across to Skye and the Outer Hebrides - Skye, Rum, Raasay, Rona, Harris, and Lewis stretch out before you.
If that's not enough, it is possible to walk a few hundred metres back from the parking area, and then left up a track that leads up to a transmitter station. The view gets better and better as you go.......
In fact, what about all the other attractions nearby the Bealach ?